Protect Yourself Against Reduced Credit Limits

Written by admin - 117 Comments

According to the Wall Street Journal, you need to keep a close eye on your credit limits in the coming weeks/months. Given all of the recent economic turmoil, and especially given yesterday’s failure of the economic bailout bill, there is concern that credit card issuers might start rolling back some or all of your available credit. So, for example, if you have a $5,000 limit and a $3,000 balance, they might erase that extra $2,000 in available credit.

Obviously, this affects your ability to spend as freely as you normally would. It can also create problems in the face of an emergency, especially if you don’t have a sufficient emergency fund. Also problematic: potential overlimit fees when if you inadvertently exceed your new, lower limit.

Here are some tips for protecting yourself…

  • Reduce your credit card debt to create a bit of extra space
  • Watch the mail for notifications of any change in your card terms
  • Check your credit report for errors that might worry your card issuer
  • Sign up for online alerts that warn you when you approach your limit
  • Shop around for more attractive credit card offers

You might also want to proactively login to your account and double-check your limit just to be sure you haven’t missed a recent notification.

Source: WSJ.com

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Comments (scroll down to add your own):

  1. AmEx without warning or reason just cut my credit limit in half – I have been doing business with them since 1992

    Comment by Buckwheat — Oct 11th 2008 @ 2:44 am
  2. AMEX also cut my credit limit, I have been with them for 5 years! No notice, supposedly a letter is on the way, even though an email would have been better.

    Comment by lotions22 — Oct 21st 2008 @ 1:09 am
  3. AMEX just did that to me too and I’ve been trying to get a hold of them all day but I’ve just been put on hold for a really really ridiculously long time. But i did get an e-mail. I just want to make sure they don’t charge me with an overdraft fee or anything.

    Comment by esther — Oct 22nd 2008 @ 5:08 pm
  4. Since July, AMEX has cut my limit from over $8000 to $1300 – all the while I’ve been paying down my cards to increase available credit to increase my credit score. How can I get my score up if the card companies keep doing this?

    Comment by Bronwyn Mindlin — Oct 30th 2008 @ 2:47 pm
  5. They reduced mine from 1500 to 900 without warning. I went to get gas and my card was not accepted. I was stuck. I called them and said I would cancel my card and notify anyone else with American Express cards to do the same. They are a terrible company

    Comment by Tom — Nov 1st 2008 @ 1:46 pm
  6. Actually Amex this past week, cut roughly 70% of all cardholders with credit lines. Most were cut 95% of their previous lines. One of my 5 cards got wacked from 10K to $1,000. Many had higher lines and even were dropped to $500 to $1,500. Even the “No-Pre Set cards, gold, platinum” tehcnially now have a limit, if you were to call and ask they would tell you what would be the highest level a charge would go through at.

    More importantly they did this to reduce risk but targeted high end spenders even with FICO’s near 800, and with good payment history etc, like I.

    These reductions were not done for the typical reasons why a card would drop a members credit line like misses, late non payments, over credit line limts etc.

    One of the many real reasons used here is, cards were flagged for spends at Costco, BJ’s, Target, Wal-Mart, and Best Buy. If there were charges from these members at any of these stores, the geniuses at AMEX legal and probably Finance thought these were considered low income shopping establishments. (all i know is i can’t get out of a BJ’s or Costco for less then $400, and if my wife shops with me forget it, $500-600 easily)Not sure on the logic they used, but this was one of two large issues. The second was if they compared zip codes to demographic areas that have been hurt by the housing market. Using these 2 factors they assumed money is tight and members cannot afford to repay charges. So to mitigate risk they dropped as I stated nearly 70% of the cardholders nationally, and each line was dropped around 90% of the prior limit.

    If you were not signed up for Email notofication(alersts etc), then a letter would arrive in the mail. The basic BS is what is listed on the letter, not what I explained above. Due to the sudden change there are many people who found themselves bouncing promo checks they had received in the mail, over limit fees, or cards being rejected to make a purchase.

    Also when you call in, you are automatically routed after you enter your info into the IVR system to a “new group” they created to deal with this. Adverse Actions group, not normal care. They say you cannot try to increase your line for 90 days. They are essentially just fielding calls, and not clogging up customer care. Don’t bother calling, as they cannot do anything, and feel as bad about taking the call as you do making it.
    (probably a new call center just opened and they don’t even work for AMEX)

    This will have a ripple with Costco directly since you can only use AMEX at Costco. Would not be surprised if they open up finally to VISA, MC, DISC, etc.

    This action will now result in a damaged FICO score for many, and the possibility that other cards might see this change ion debt to available credit with AMEX and choose that maybe they know something and will follow suit and also drop their card members limit.

    This can spread and have a very negative affect during this crisis, and hurt consumer confidence, along with the inability to actually borrow from banks now that the FED and gov’t has stepped in. Since FICO’s might get dinged 50-100 points depending on what affects AMEX causes a consumer, it could impact the ability to actually get a loan from a lender of any kind.

    Also many small business card holders will now not be able to leverage credit to buy product resulting in yet another factor to slow the economy.

    Frankly, there should and probably will be two major impacts:
    1. Class action lawsuit filed with a top firm with I would bet hundreds of thousands of card holders that were and will be affected by this.
    2. Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion come up with some type of code or way to flag accounts of consumers that are being affected by this and to not include this (business driven change because AMEX has no deposit businesslike Citi, Chase, Wachovia, etc), and is going through major financial issues, such as layoffs, and resignations)

    This also will have a global and certainly domestic impact, and I am surprised between Costco, small business owners and the possibly millions of cardholders that have been affected by this the gov’t or other agency has not stepped in and done something yet.

    The most logical reason is many people are hesitant to discuss these sensitive topics, because most people regard money as off limits to talk about and are uncomfortable about it. That is the Psychy that probably has led many people to this decline. Had they only asked for help sooner.

    Comment by Dave — Nov 1st 2008 @ 3:39 pm
  7. I absolutely hate AMEX and will never get another card with them again. I had a Gold card and a Blue card with them up until a few months ago. I had not used my Gold card in about eight months and I typically only used it to buy tickets to events or one-time big purchases. Last August, I spent about $1,000, which had never been a problem before (I had been a Gold card customer for over 10 years), and the calls started immediately requesting that I pay off the card. They called me every day for three weeks until I finally just made the payment online to get them off my back. And all of this happened even BEFORE I RECEIVED THE STATEMENT/BILL. I cancelled that card right afterwards because they were so abusive to me on the phone and I never wanted to do business with them again.

    The Blue card had a pretty low balance (about $2000) and over the past year they lowered my available credit first from $10,000 to $5,000 and then to $4,000 and $3,000… and I haven’t checked today to see what the credit limit is, but I am sure it’s right around the current balance. I should mention that I have never had a late payment with them BUT my husband’s business account has suffered, so I am sure I am being penalized because of my association with him.

    They are a horrible, horrible company and my one big lesson in all of this is to never use credit again. I am going to a cash-only basis forever more. I never want to be at the mercy of these vultures again.

    Comment by Susan — Nov 1st 2008 @ 9:37 pm
  8. I have Bank of America and my credit limit keeps going up. They recently raised my limit. Overall, the limit increases by about 10-20% every 6-12 months.

    Comment by Mike — Nov 3rd 2008 @ 8:46 pm
  9. My husband just received a letter today that stated his credit limit on his Wal-Mart Discover card was reduced from $3000 to $1190.

    Comment by Everafter — Nov 19th 2008 @ 8:00 pm
  10. I am beyond annoyed with AMEX. I was at Costco a couple of weeks ago with my husband purchasing products for our business. When it came time to check out, we were both embarrassed to find out that my AMEX business card had been declined. We used to have a $43,000 credit limit and AMEX decided it would be a good idea to decrease it close to what we owe. Now we are maxed out on the card and of course my score will now decrease due to AMEX actions. They also decreased my credit limit on my personal account down to what I currently owe them, which is another card that is now maxed out! I can’t believe AMEX would treat their best customers like this! We have never been late on any payment. We have actually paid more than the minimum and this is how we get treated? I am definitely closing these accounts and will NEVER EVER do business with AMEX again!!!

    Comment by Laura — Nov 20th 2008 @ 5:31 pm
  11. I have balances on 2 of my Amex accounts and they have cut the limits to $500 above the current balances.
    Everytime I pay a big amount to pay down the balances the credit limit comes down too.

    My question is if I close the cards, and I have an excellent payment history(never been late for 23 years )

    Mt query is if I close it will they send me to collections?

    I just want to pay down the debt in time and don’t need to use that card ever! After all, what good is a 500 dollar limit above balance? It’s useless. I just want to close it out and keep paying for the next 6-12 months.

    Comment by bunny — Nov 22nd 2008 @ 8:55 am
  12. While am on a business trip in Africa. Amex reduced my line of credit by $25000 to less than the balance on my account; rendering my card useless and causing me embarrassment and costing me money. Amex sent me an email that you had reduced my credit line. I am appalled at the way Amex treated a loyal customer like me. In 2007 I spend over $100000 on their card yearly. My average monthly balance in 2007 was over $8000. Thus, setting my credit line to $4000 would certainly disable my card. It would seem that they may have checked these simple facts before they made my card unusable while I am on an international business trip. In addition, I had wait for many minutes for a supervisor to increase my credit line (temporarily) so I could continue to use my card. The reasons Amex gave for reducing my credit line are not consistent with my credit report. Amex representatives tell me that I have to provide data to refute their reasons for reducing my credit line. Our data sources are the same. The credit report I have from Experian says I am a good credit risk and more importantly, has not changed in the last six months. I can only conclude that Amex choice to reduce my credit line by $25000 was either an error or intentional based on some other criteria. The fact that it takes 40 minutes on hold to speak with Amex credit line help desk indicates that they may have done the same thing to many or their customers. Either way Amex have maltreated and disappointed one of your better customers. I plan to get my credit elsewhere unless they decide to restore my credit line and reimburse me for the trouble and expense they have caused me.

    Comment by Scott — Nov 26th 2008 @ 12:53 am
  13. Amex screwed me over too. So did B of A. Also HSBC. I’ve been paying off debt to raise my Fico and they don’t like that so they decrease the limits – in effect holding you hostage to them as you will not qualify for a card with anyone else as your Fico score suddenly drops like a stone. I’ve lost about $25,000 in open credit after paying down around $6000 in 3 months. My Fico went up 23 points – they lowered my limits (no notice) and my Fico then dropped 68 points! I’ve been with Amex for over 35 years – never missed a payment – EVER – with anyone at anytime. HSBC, after lowing my limit on one card raised my interest rate to 30% on my other card with them – due to my “debt to limit ratio” Even a loan shark on the street plays fairer than these guys. Some arrticles say that these companies are doing this “because they can”. Time for the politicians to regulate this BS – it is OUT OF CONTROL. These same companies operate in Canada and my friends up their have NOT been subject to this nonsense – because of the consumer & credit protections OUTLAW this type of conduct. Amex used top have a good reputation for being reasonable – NO MORE. My advice – go with CAPITAL ONE! Not only are they NOT doing this to thier clients, they have actually RAISED the limits on my new accounts without request AND consitantly offer balance transfers at a lifetime rate of 1.99%. The very minute that I learned of Amex lowering my limit I applied at Cap One and now I pay practically no interest and my FICO has stayed level for the past 6 months (better than dropping for sure). Even tho I don’t use the crooks cards (one limit went from $6000 to $305 after 12 years with them) DO NOT CLOSE THE ACCOUNT. if you do it will harm your FICO score again because they also factor in the lenghth of open lines ie even tho they can drop your FICO by 60 points by reducing a limit from 6000 to 305, if you get mad and close it, your FICO could drop another 30 points depending on the lenght of time you have had the reduced limit account open. Call your Senator and let them know that all the money in the world will not save the financial “system” if everyone get screwed with lower FICO scores because of these creditors. Either they revamp credit account holders protections or they legislate the FICO system to stop this manipulation!

    Comment by Bubbs — Nov 26th 2008 @ 4:46 am
  14. I just tried using my Am Ex Blue card today for some early holiday purchases – about $300. My credit limit is/was $24,000 and I pay off my account every month. My card was declined. I thought someone had stolen my card number. I now find out that my limit was lowered to exactly what I had on charge for this month – $8000. I phoned and was transferred to the Adverse Action Group (1-800-842-5303) who were of no help. They said the decrease was due to my credit report. I then spent an hour accessing my credit report from Experian (1-888-397-3742) only to find out the one bad report I have is from a Sprint cell phone bill in 2003. I was late paying due to disputing charges. I finally paid in full and closed the account.

    So what do I do for the holidays! Use cash!!

    Comment by Ed — Nov 26th 2008 @ 6:19 pm
  15. I have Bank Of America American Express Rewards.. My line was 11k with 2k transferred balance and all of a sudden they reduced it to 5k. Pretty amazing

    Comment by B — Nov 26th 2008 @ 7:39 pm
  16. I have a Bank of Hawaii American Express credit card billed through FIA Card Services. In October they doubled my interest rate from 7.99 to 15.99. I got no help from FIA – the rep acknowledged that there’s been no late pays, no below minimum pays, no change in credit score, nothing. He told me that I wasn’t using the card much and was clearly in “pay-down mode” so they “decided to make it official.” Whatever the frick that’s supposed to mean.

    He said they had put a Change of Terms notice in my August bill – I never saw it – and my choice was to continue using the card and pay the higher rate or give up the card and continue paying it down on the old rate.

    It’s a small balance – under $3k so I considered just paying it off altogether – but then thought, Why should I? If they won’t play by the rules, why should I feel obligated to? So I sent a letter to Bank of Hawaii where I’ve been a customer for 26 years announcing MY change in terms: they could return the interest rate and usage conditions to what they were or I would never send them another cent.

    They leaned on FIA who have now met my terms, credited my account for the excess interest they charged and have removed any limits on my use of the card.

    Comment by CathyG — Nov 27th 2008 @ 12:56 am
  17. By the way, I really don’t worry about FICO. I figure that with all the delinquencies, defaults, foreclosures, bankruptcies, credit limit lowering, unemployment hitting income and you name it, FICO won’t be worth the paper it’s printed on in another year.

    Comment by CathyG — Nov 27th 2008 @ 1:09 am
  18. I always pay on time and I pay over the minimum. My score is 774.
    Last week American Express cut my credit in half, down to what I owe. This act on, the part of American Express, will damage my credit by showing that my credit is extended. Won’t this create a domino effect, that will have a serious effect on my credit? I say yes it will.
    I have contacted my representatives on this. This is a serious problem. I urge everyone to write and call them. Amex has pull tricks in the past.
    In years past Amex tried to get extra fees by claiming they received my bill late. I dumped them for this. I went back to them for the skymiles and 3% on transfers. This credit card limit cut shows they are still up to there tricks.

    Comment by MS — Dec 2nd 2008 @ 5:02 am
  19. I agree with Cathy G. I have no bank to negotiate with though. I called Amex to nego. They refused. If credit card companies ruin a persons credit by cutting there limit why not just stop paying all your credit cards. After all what difference does it make? Like Cathy said the FICO will be useless.

    Comment by MS — Dec 2nd 2008 @ 5:13 am
  20. AMEX waited for us to make a payment then they cut the credit limit almost in half. We can’t even buy groceries now.

    Comment by Anna — Dec 4th 2008 @ 5:44 pm
  21. I just received the letter regarding my interest rate increase along with a notice from Blue stating that my credit limit is going from 10K to $4400. This is totally reidiculous and unacceptable. In the statement they claim, among other things, that the decision was based the fact that my debt is too high with AMEX. That’s total BS because I just made a $4000 payment in May bringing my balance to $0.00, which is where it has been until the last month or so because of Christmas shopping. They also refer to my credit score from Experian, which again is bogus because my most recent Experian score is 721. I am soo sick and tired of these coporate sleezebags sticking it to us that are just trying to get by. I will be contacting AMEX tomorrow and if i do not get any satisfactory answers, I will be contacting an attorney. If someone has already initiated a class action lawsuit, PLEASE contact me.

    Comment by Kendall — Dec 21st 2008 @ 10:13 pm
  22. The FICO score is a bunch of crap!!! AMEX lowered my limit and I’m paying it off and closing it!! I don’t care if it hurts my credit score. All the credit card companies that lowered my limits will be closed, I may have a shitty FICO score for awhile, oh well, but at least I’ll start getting rid of those damn cards!!!!

    Comment by Felecia — Jan 22nd 2009 @ 10:14 pm
  23. Without notice by Bank of America
    25,000 limit reduced to 2,700
    After paying every bill in full in advance of the due date for five years in a row.
    NEVER a single late payment.
    NEVER a balance.
    $361,000 worth of business, paid on time, every time.
    And now this.
    I’d say B of A is in trouble, not me.

    Comment by Steve Mullen — Jan 26th 2009 @ 3:45 am
  24. I did a balance transfer 2 yrs ago with Chase. $20,000 at 3.99 % for the life of the loan. I pay $250.00 a mo. now. The last bill Chase increased my payment from 2% to 5%.They want $680.00 a mo. I told them they broke there agreement. They said they would leave my payment at $250.00 if I agree to increase my interest to 7.99%. I have no choice. Under deres, I agreed.

    These people are criminals that hide behind laws they promote and pay our government for.

    It is no wonder people have stopped buying anything we can trust NO ONE, business or our government.

    Comment by MS — Feb 1st 2009 @ 11:14 am
  25. With respect to American Express line of credit reductions, I suggest that you contact the Consumer Affairs Division of the Office of Thrift Supervision. Tell them your story and request that they initiate an investigation. You can contact this division of OTS here:

    Department of the Treasury
    Office of Thrift Supervision
    Consumer Affairs Division
    1700 G Street N.W.
    Washington, D.C. 20052

    Comment by Fed_Up_Customer — Feb 7th 2009 @ 9:28 pm
  26. I long suspected something was up with Amex after they cut my limit from $3600 to $500 and I’m glad I stumbled on this site. I had a Blue of $3600 which I hardly use because of the low limit. I decided to use it at Best Buy recently and my card was declined. I called Amex right away and they told me my limit had been reduce that very hour. Was this a coincidence that at the very moment of my transaction my limit was reduced?

    I have no stomach for this BS so I asked the rep to transfer me to someone who can close my account and I closed it right away. I’m not a big fun of Amex anyway; I can only use it at Costco, Sam’s and a few other places. I would cancel my open limit corporate account with Amex too if my employer would let me use a different bank. Will never do business with them again.

    By the way if you ever have to close you credit card account, make sure you tell them to note that the account was closed at “customer’s request” Otherwise if they report it to Credit Reporting Bureau as simply closed, it may seem like they closed it on you and will affect your credit score negatively.

    I’m waiting for the CLASS ACTION!

    Comment by Amex_Sucks — Feb 11th 2009 @ 11:15 pm
  27. I forgot to add to my post above that I logged on to check my Amex account (since I hadn’t used it in a while) before attempting my purchase. I verified that I had zero balance and $3600 available. I then went to Best Buuy.com to make my purchase of $1000 only to get the card declined. I suspect the credit limit was reduced by some machine using heuristics and not reviewed by a real person. I too believe that the Best Buy purchase triggered the credit limit reduction for reasons only known to Amex. Did I say I was making this purchase online around 3:00AM? Anyway, I finished the purchase with my Visa card. Bye-bye Amex.

    Comment by Amex_Sucks — Feb 11th 2009 @ 11:47 pm
  28. Same story……..

    Beware…………..

    I had my two business cards reduced as I was paying and now just today 2 hours ago…..I got A CALL FROM THOSE bI****S AT AMERICAN EXPRESS AND THEY CANCELED MY TWO BUSINESS CARDS, THAT I PAY ON TIME AND CARD HAD A BALANCE OF ZERO AND THE OTHER HAD LIKE 500. I PAY THEM OFF EVERY MONTH…….SO YOU GET RIDE OF THE PEOPLE THAT PAY ON TIME…IS THAT WHAT IS IT YOU SCUM BAGS….

    THIS CAN’T HAPPEN IN CANADA B/C THEY ENACTED LAWS AGAINST THESE COMPANIES FROM DOING THIS…BUT IN THE GOOD OLD US OF GREED NO PROBLEM….SCREW PEOPLE AS MUCH AS YOU WOULD LIKE

    WHAT CAN WE DO…NOW MY CREDIT IS GOING TO GO FROM 770-800 TO WHO KNOWS WHAT…LUCKILY I HAVE ANOTHER BUSINESS CARD BUT I WAS ABOUT TO BUY A HOME……NOW I AM SCREWED……THERE HAS TO BE SOMETHING PEOPLE CAN DO B/C BY THEM SCREWING OUR CREDIT LIMIT, THERE IS A RIPPLE AFFECT..

    Comment by L Burroughs — Feb 16th 2009 @ 4:01 pm
  29. I used my Gold for extensive monthly business travel. It gets paid off in FULL every single month. AMEX cut my limit from $15000 to $5000 with NO WARNING! I just paid my Jan bill and canceled the AMEX – I will never use AMEX again. BTW – my FICO was 740-780. AMEX lost a great customer with a big mouth who will be downing on them every chance I get!

    Comment by Amex Stinks — Feb 18th 2009 @ 3:24 pm
  30. Well,
    I have been with Direct Merchants Bank for over 9 yearss and my credit limit was 3900 with a 5.99%. I just made a payment of 900 and 1300. Today I looked at my account and my limit has been decreased to 300. THATS RIGHT 300. THe answer I was given was, this was a business decision and has nothing to do with me. I have never missed a payment, been late or anything. I am SOOOO MAD and pissed off. I have never received any type of notice and I just made my payment 3 days ago. I asked them why I was not notifyed. I was told that I do not have to be notified. Something really needs to be done about this mess.

    Comment by DR — Feb 20th 2009 @ 8:42 pm
  31. I TRIED TO USE MY CARD A TARGET TODAY, AND TO MY SHOCK AND EMBARASSMENT IT WAS DECLINED. DIRECT MERCHANT DECREASED MY CREDIT LIMIT FROM 8600 TO 3300 ? NO NOTICE WRITTEN OR OTHERWISE ! ! WHEN I CALLED THE MESSAGE SAID I WAS OVERLIMIT OF ALL THINGS!! THEN I FIND OUT THEY DECREASED MY LIMIT AND THE NOTICE WILL BE MAILED OUT ON 2/27/09, THIS IS THE THE 24TH!! I HAVE NEVER MISSED A PAYMENT, WAS ONE DAY LATE WHEN THEY BILLED ME EARLIER THAN WAS THE USUSAL DATE, HMMMM, WONDER WHAT THAT WAS ABOUT. I HAVE BEEN A GOOD CUSTOMER. THEYTREAT ME LIKE THIS. NOT NICE. THEN YOU WONDER WHY PEOPLE DONT PAY THEIR BILLS. VERY BAD BUSINESS ON THEIR PART. WHAT IF I HAD AN EMERGENCY AND HAD BEEN MILES FROM HOME THINKING I HAD 5000 CREDIT TO SPEND? AS IF THEY WOULD HAVE CARED. THERE HAD BETTER NOT BE AN OVERLIMIT CHARGE ON MY CARD; THEY HAVE PROBABLY ALREADY DAMAGED MY CREDIT SCORE EONOUGH BY THE LIMIT DECREASE. I AM A REGISTERED NURSE, WORKING AT TWO HOSPITALS, NOT IN DANGER OF LOSING MY INCOME. I DONT REALLY NEED THIS CARD I HAVE OTHERS WITH LOWER INTEREST RATES, DON’T KNOW WHY I USED THIS ONE ANYWAY. HOW CAN THEY GET BY WITH DOING THIS TO PEOPLE??

    Comment by C. DOUGLAS — Feb 24th 2009 @ 7:50 pm
  32. I emailed Direct Merchants Bank on the 20th about my credit limit decrease… and on the web page for sign in access it says you will be answered within 24 hours. Anytime before I have always been given a timely response. However; they have yet answered my questions through email on why my limit was dropped. I also have another credit card, and I will go to using that one if I need to.. but the point here is… how can this be a business decision, when you have people that pay on time, are never late, and you treat them like this? I will never use this card again, and I will give them as much crap if they ever increase my credit limit back as I did about decreasing it in the first place!

    Comment by DR — Feb 26th 2009 @ 12:15 am
  33. I emailed them too, same story, no reply. imagine that..:(

    Comment by C. DOUGLAS — Feb 26th 2009 @ 10:35 pm
  34. I realize that a few folks posting here believe that these actions might make FICO scores somewhat useless in another year… but if I were the suspicious type, I’d be betting that a reduction in average FICO scores for Americans on a massive scale – the scale that can be created by reducing credit limits suddenly on many millions of card holders – is something that the Credit Industry is betting will become its *salvation* in a few more years, aside from simply ‘reducing their exposure to risk’ today.

    Think about it – when the economy begins to recover, and Americans begin to spend more freely, all of us – with our slightly dinged FICO scores – will be qualifying for home loans and card rates at HIGHER interest rates than before. Why? Because the FICO scores “merit those higher rates”, the credit companies will say. Nice trick, isn’t it, considering that banks and credit card companies essentially helped create millions of those damaged FICO scores.

    The long term plan then is to reduce risk today, and make more money off of us later by being able to charge us more, on average, than what our true financial picture would allow.

    By the way, all of you good folks out there who’ve been paying off your cards each month? You’re no friend of the credit industry, because they don’t get to make any money off of you. Out you go, the lot of you.

    What a wonderful bunch, these financial industry folks. ;)

    Comment by spike — Feb 27th 2009 @ 12:19 am
  35. Is it possible to organize a class-action against the Credit Card Companies?

    Amex & Advanta raised my interest on two cards to over 24% and lowered my limit to the balance which I didn’t know and had to pay a fee for going over the balance as well as a late fee since my payment is set up to automatically be withdrawn from my bank account.

    I’ve always had great credit. I’d think shopping at Costc should come off as wise. I get shopping at SAKs is better???

    Comment by Susan — Mar 2nd 2009 @ 4:07 pm
  36. BOA cut my credit limit from 21k to 3.1k…for an account that I use for work expenses,( I pay it off totally every month and sometimes I need well over 10K for business expenses) this dumped my FICA and than AMEX canceled my card with them because the FICA dropped…
    I have to be able to charge business expenses as my employer will not provide me with a credit card. This could cost me my job. BOA has screwed up with the Merrill deal and are trying to make all the customers pay for it.

    Comment by Paul — Mar 5th 2009 @ 12:46 am
  37. Amex cut my limit and raised my rate to 24.9%APR. A few days ago they sent me a letter congratulating me that my interest rate, for future purchases is now 10%. Jerks.

    Comment by Susan — Mar 5th 2009 @ 11:56 am
  38. Direct Merchants screwed me, too. I barely used the card- had no balance for the past three months, NEVER late and always paid the balance when there was one. My reward? They reduced my credit limit from $7000 to $300! I have a card with Juniper with a nearly identical story. Both cards with no balance, no lates- now my credit score is likely to take a dive.

    Know what? SCREW THEM! I don’t need to rely on CREDIT for emergencies any way. Every account I have is going to be paid off and CLOSED!

    Comment by Ken — Mar 7th 2009 @ 7:40 pm
  39. I have a couple of HSBC credit card accounts which had a 5,000 limit on each and I owed a little over 1,000 on each of them. I paid every month on time and with no notice, they lowered both of my credit limits to within a few dollars of my outstanding balance. I have tried to be careful regarding keeping my debt ration below 25% of my credit limit so as not to negatively effect my credit score. The other day, I received two letters approx. 6 weeks after they drastically lowered my available credit letting me know that they appreciate my business and want to be proactive in communicating any changes that may affect my accounts and that they had recently completed a loss mitigation review on their Direct Merchants Bank Mastercard Accounts and as a result of the class of accounts into which my accounts fell the credit limits on my accounts have been reduced. And the letters close with how they look forward to serving your credit card needs. And if I have any questions to please contact them. Well, my first question is “How’s my FICO Score?” now that you…not I..have done this to me.
    To compound matters..they raised my interest rates without warning from 7.99% to over 15%. Wow..that is one big jump.
    I am truly angered by the lack of regulation and as a tax payer and working middle class citizen of the United States I feel trapped and a victim if the banking industry. My hard earned tax dollars are being used to bail out the banking industry…the very people that are selfishly using my tax dollars against me. They are using our bailout money to fund the opportunity to charge us more and destroy our credit worthiness with respects to our FICO Scores. The ironic part, is that I don’t go out and spend needlessly and every whim and infact have reserved my credit charging to items that I might need from time to time. Now, as hard as times are to save money for these other expenditures, the credit in which I worked so hard to maintain is no longer at my disposal when I might need it. Result: the economy suffers..because I’m not spending…and when I don’t spend…the stores don’t make money…and when the stores don’t make money…then people don’t have jobs…All because of the banking industries at the top of the chain.
    I ask myself…why are we bailing the banking industry out? Time and time again …billions of dollars fed into a dark hole…my hard earned dollars…for what?…where is the money going? Where’s the accountability?
    I purpose a National System to protect the consumer’s FICO Score and how it is reported with respects to the debt ratio on credit card usage. I believe if a credit card company chooses to decrease credit abruptly due to their money shortages..or whatever..through no fault of the consumer…that the banks are obligating to explain why to the bureaus for documentation and as result the bureaus would need to evaluate how our scores would then be determined based on this information. There has got to be a way to protect the consumer from the negative effects that are dwindling down to the very people that kept them alive.

    I have read numerous entries on the internet and I am sure there are thousands more similiar to what I have personally experienced and am experiencing. We need to get together somehow whether it be internet or a trip to Washington that what is going on out there is not right..there is a clear problem and something needs to be done about this immediately and not a year from now. Let’s start with the credit bureaus!!

    If you have any ideas as to how we can start…where we can put our voices so they will be heard by the right people…please respond. Maybe CNN ? and if you any of you have other means to get this message out…please take what I have written with my permission. I believe if we fight back in the thousands if not millions..all in one place…maybe then we will be heard. The Credit Card Bill of Rights is not now and too far into the future and really does not begin to touch on the sudden credit reduction..involuntary FICO Score damage.

    Comment by Beth — Mar 8th 2009 @ 12:04 pm
  40. I am feeling a LOT more relieved after reading your comments. I’ve had a card with BofA since 1997…the limit WAS 27,000 and I’ve always paid on time, and just made a huge payment. I owe 7,500 and they reduced my limit to 8,000. I called and explained that I’m a single mom, an excellent customer and my credit score is in the 700’s. The guy literally said to me, “you look like you’re living off your credit cards”. He refused to let me speak to a supervisor and when I said, “well this hurts my credit! You know what, just CLOSE IT!” His sassy reply was, “Well that will hurt your credit too”.

    LIVID and scared about how this is going to truly affect me. Anyone know, DOES it drop my credit score now…making me look like my card is MAXED?

    Comment by Julie — Mar 11th 2009 @ 5:57 pm
  41. Yes I agree about getting a class action going. I cannot believe that those of us who DO pay and who DO care are getting treated like criminals. It is ridiculous.

    Comment by Julie — Mar 11th 2009 @ 6:14 pm
  42. The banks ARE KILLING US. They are causing the credit problem by cutting our limits down.

    The more the cut the more everything goes down.

    I can’t trust buying anything on a card for fear they will change our agreement to a higher rate.

    They cry to congress for more money, pay their staff bonus’s with the money and cut our limits.

    It’s just crazy.

    Comment by MS — Mar 11th 2009 @ 6:19 pm
  43. I posted on Nov 1st, I am the 6th posting. To add fuel to the fire with all the issues we are dealing with and seeing in the news, Suze Orman Saturday night had a caller on the line who was under water on their home, and could not refi. They called and called, and since he was current they would not work with him. Short story is she actually recommended, do not make a payment for 3 months till they are then willing to work with you. This is the ugliest place people want to go, but frankly they are forcing us to call a bluff. It may be worth looking into alternative action instead of or in additon to a class action, but a way to take control of our own credit by somehow manipulating just as those who are purposly defaulting on mortgages just to get to refi there notes. Why banks are playing this game with the poeple who can and choose to pay is still beyond me. However, unless a class action is brought, or the 3 credit agencies decide to put a notation on accounts that were dropped by creditors which then hurt fico scores, we are screwed. I saw because of just 1 of my many cards got dropped from 10k to 1k my fico has dropped 60 points since Nov. I am in the process of selling and buying a new home and now face a possible higher rate, all because Amex a few months back was hurting, and deciced to cut one of my 3 existing cards. The funniest part is they cut one of the 3, I have. The middle one as far as limits. Not the highest one which still has a 25K limit with barely anything on it. The gold is fine as well. So there moves also did not make a whole lot fo sense either. I wrote my congressman, and called 10, top ten law firms, asking for Snr, partners and left detailed voicemails. Nobody called back. I am willing to be a lead plantiff, but who can we get to take a case?

    Comment by Dave — Mar 11th 2009 @ 6:31 pm
  44. I have though along the same lines of a class action law suit. SOMEONE needs to get this started. My credit card companies have all increased their rates and or decreased my credit limits which resulted in lowering my credit score. I am so discusted that after months of calling them they are not willing to work with that I have decided to stop paying. If they do not work with me then I will file for bankruptcy as I cannot afford the new rates of 24% to 31% that I now have. It is completely unfair that we- the payers of our bills- are being used to pay for the credit card companies and executives mistakes. It is highway robbery, morally reprehensible, and predatory and I for one am not going to participate. I am “opting out” of paying.

    Comment by Marilyn Pinet — Mar 11th 2009 @ 8:35 pm
  45. Just try to sue a business. Good luck.

    There was a time when business’s where keep from doing their dirty crap. A lawyer would take a case on a percentage. That was stopped. Now you have to pay a lawyer, they drain you of your money; all of them win and you, joe six pack lake it in the end.

    Law suites by individual’s have been almost stopped. Do you all find it extremely suspicious that in was recently made much harder to file bankruptcy.

    Comment by MS — Mar 11th 2009 @ 10:04 pm
  46. Correction to the above.

    Joe Six Pack takes it in the end.

    Comment by MS — Mar 11th 2009 @ 10:16 pm
  47. I suggest that everyone contact your representative in Congress. With enough noise, they’ll take action.

    If we don’t tell them and b**tch to each other; they think it’s business as usual.

    I’m in a financial bind so am sort-of stuck with Amex at the moment; those of you who can go to another company – go! They don’t deserve our business. After I pay off my limit, I’ll never get another Amex card.

    Comment by Susan — Mar 11th 2009 @ 10:49 pm
  48. This advice doesn’t make sense to me. Based on what has been happening, it would seem that the way to “protect yourself” is to keep your balance as close to your limit as possible and only make minimum payments. That’s what I will have to do now after discovering that the extra money I just paid on HSBC to clear the amount to use for something else was taken away. I am very short on money and can’t take a chance on having this happen again.

    Comment by Serena — Mar 13th 2009 @ 4:17 am
  49. Visa Did it to me.I had a card with them for about 10 years.Originally it started with a 1500 limit,Then it got upped to 2500 then 3000.Last year I nickle and dimed myself to 2800-2900 balance.Last month I paid it off in full and a week later they dropped my limit from 3000 bucks to just 900.That is less than a freaking pay check.

    Comment by Jonathan Rutledge — Mar 15th 2009 @ 5:38 pm
  50. I am posted earlier and also saw the Suzi Orman show the other night where she told a guy to STOP paying his mortgage until the company paid attention. What do you guys think? I mean, am I screwing them or me? But if Suzi is recommending it….what is the thinking there? Have any of you tried to contact her about the idea of more of us sticking together and doing such a thing with the credit cards? Has anyone heard of people with good credit purposely not paying in order to get attention? On Saturday I called BofA again to try to get back more credit, and they responded…you know that FIA card with a zero balance…we’re going to have to close it. I have a CREDIT of $7.00 and they closed it. They’re covering their butts, but man is it changing the way I live my life.

    Comment by julie — Mar 17th 2009 @ 7:12 am
  51. I got an email from amex over the weekend informing me they are reducing my limits and sending me something in the mail explaining why.
    One was cut from $20,000 down to $4200, just $200 over it’s balance the other cut from $37,000 down to $31,000 or just $700 over the balance.

    Comment by daniel — Mar 31st 2009 @ 9:00 pm
  52. Marilyn, although I do not recommend what you did, if you can afford it, you should set up a bank account and deposit each months credit card payment that you wanted to make in to that account.

    If you can’t afford to make these deposits, then you will lose credibility in court should you ever end up there.

    Comment by Alessandro Machi — Apr 2nd 2009 @ 1:05 am
  53. It is their money and they are allowed to raise or lower your credit limit. What is much more deadly is raising your monthly minimum payment by 250%, which Chase just did to all of its customers that had 5.99% loans until their debt was paid off as long as they paid on time every month.

    Or, if you agree to grovel to them, Chase will allow you to keep your 2% monthly minimum, but your interest rate will go up to 7.99%

    Ironically, for most of their customers that works out to MORE than the 10 dollar a month charge they were going to charge.

    I will be exploring what Chase has done on DailyPuma.com

    Comment by Alessandro Machi — Apr 2nd 2009 @ 1:17 am
  54. BANK OF AMERICA scr_wing good customers also. I have had the same credit card for over 20 years and the available balance was in the 10’s of thousands. I never used over 3-4 thousand and always pay my bill in full.
    THEY CUT MY AVAILABLE CREDIT IN 1/2.
    OH, they did offer to REdetermine if I was credit worthy. Sounds like it is time to find a new company.

    Comment by Nothanks — Apr 13th 2009 @ 7:44 pm
  55. Just so everyone knows, I’m the “Ken” from March 7th, ^up there^. Listen up people. The banking industry isn’t dumb (okay maybe a bunch of them are- but the guys on top know just what they’re doing). They stiffened the bankruptcy laws a few years ago in anticipation of what is happening to the economy now. Now there are hundreds of thousands more people in hopeless debt then there were back then, and they’re having a rough go of getting free.

    So what are the banks doing now? Cutting balance limits, raising rates, closing out inactive accounts= LIMITING EXPOSURE. Exposure to what? The coming HYPERINFLATION. Anybody who is owed money in U.S. dollars should be covering their butts now, collecting what they can BEFORE the inflation hits and not exposing themselves to any more risk via being LONG dollars- JUST LIKE THE BANKS ARE DOING NOW.

    Consider what the banks are doing to us a BLESSING. It’s the warning shot over the bow. You won’t get many more. Buy silver, buy gold, buy extra food and guns and ammo if you don’t have it. Your families are going to need it.

    Comment by Ken — Apr 13th 2009 @ 8:09 pm
  56. B of A just reduced my credit limit from 32K to 16K. I have an 809 FICO and pay my bills in full each month. Nothing bad on my credit EVER for my 40 some years of existence. Dropping this and using my credit union accounts. Hasta B of A!

    Comment by bob — Apr 17th 2009 @ 9:50 pm
  57. I too just received a notice from BofA that they will reduce my credit line from 23K to 15K. I understand that credit is limited right now, but I am worried that this reduction will hurt my credit score, which has always been excellent. I also received another notice from BofA that they will be increasing all the fees on my checking account and requiring a higher minimum balance to avoid these fees. I have been a customer for theirs for over 10 years, but these two actions are leading me to look for another financial institution to use.

    Comment by Heather — Apr 17th 2009 @ 10:20 pm
  58. I just got off the phone with BOA. They reduced my credit limit from $13,000 to $$7,000 because I’ve never had a balance of over $8,000. I never carry a balance on this card and really only use it for Christmas purchases. I charged a couple hundred dollars lately because I was waiting for my new Chase card to replace the expired one and I belive that is when they reduced my credit limit although it may have been earlier. This sucks as it will surely hurt my credit score. I’m cutting up this card and getting another Chase card to maintain my credit rating. I’ve been an excellent customer to BOA, and this is how they show customer appreciation. Congress needs to do something.

    Comment by Marie — Apr 21st 2009 @ 3:39 pm
  59. Marie, I wrote Barney Farts, head of the senate banking committee, months ago. Nothing has been done to stop the banks from killing r credit rating. If you have’nt done so, write him.

    The banks intentionally raised are rating so that we would look good on paper, and buy more using their credit cards. Do you get it? This was a fraud on the public from the beginning!!!!!!!!!!!

    Comment by MS — Apr 21st 2009 @ 9:39 pm
  60. I’m a B of A victim. Credit line decreased from $24k to $11k! I’ve paid my balance every month and have never been late. Nine year member. Thanks B of A! I will be cancellng my card and looking into credit union credit cards for sure.

    Comment by MJS — Apr 22nd 2009 @ 11:36 am
  61. Chase just reduced our home equity line of credit which we took out 5 months ago from 63K to 17K. It took an act of God to get the 63K despite my wife and my credit scores being in the high 700s. All this in light of the fact that they undervalued my home and only would loan 75% to value. So- essentially a secured line of credit. Chase gave no notice or warning. I was just checking our balances on-line and happened to notice they had drastically reduced our line. WTF??? So much for those who managed their lifestyles within their means, paid there bills on time, and actually worked for what they have. What great changes this country is undergoing under the direction of a group of inexperienced ignorant utuopian “well wishers”. God Bless (and help) America!

    Comment by RWN — Apr 26th 2009 @ 1:26 am
  62. Another victim of B of A here. Just today received a letter that they’ve cut my credit limit from $10K down to $5K. At one point it was $22K but they decreased it last year, too.

    The reason? “Sometimes we find we’ve extended more credit to customers then they are likely to want or need.”

    Huh? Well, I guess you’ve made SURE of that now, haven’t you B of A? That’s what I get for paying my small balance with you off every month.

    I wouldn’t mind except I, too, am trying to buy a house. I just — and I mean just — got pre-approved for a loan with a great rate in part based on my 797 FICO score. My score will go down now because I have two other credit cards with balances, and my debt-to-credit ratio just took a whack. And when my score goes down, will my other cards react and increase my rates and/or decrease my credit limits, too?

    Was it shopping for a mortgage loan that triggered my credit line decrease? I wonder.

    Comment by JM — May 3rd 2009 @ 1:51 am
  63. Yes, JM they say they gave you more credit than you need. It was part of their fraud to get people to by more and more. It increased your credit rating and now they are doing damage because they are cutting your credit rating. We are in this financial crisis, this collapse because of the money lenders.

    Just yesterday a senator on the news said ‘the banks are the most powerful force in Washington, therefore we have not been able to pass laws that protect citizens as we would like.’ What does this tell you? It tells me our government has been overthrown by banks and business. We must read the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

    Comment by MS — May 3rd 2009 @ 12:26 pm
  64. “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.”
    ~Thomas Jefferson

    Comment by Ken — May 3rd 2009 @ 12:37 pm
  65. Ken, excellent quote. Isn’t this what has been happening and what is happening. Look at CA, people pushing grocery carts they live out of, bike people living in abandoned house’s and on the streets.

    “……. will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered.” CONQUERED and our own gov. has and is giving away the land that we conquered, to 3rd world people illegal aliens and the like.

    Comment by MS — May 3rd 2009 @ 5:42 pm
  66. Another BofA screw-up: just got a letter that they reduced my 11k to 5.5k line, and after calling customer service and speaking with senior credit analyst – she decided to reduce my OTHER (!) BofA account (former MBNA card, PSU alumni) from 34k to 1k – and the card doesn’t even have a balance! Never being late, never over limit etc. – She told me my professor salary does not cover so-called “unsecured debt” – even when you don’t carry it. Does not make any business sense – unless they are really screwing with us, and this is after all this bail-out! BofA just gotten too big!

    I think their actions do call for a class action suit. How do we get this started ? If somebody knows who to contact – please, post.

    Comment by Helen — May 5th 2009 @ 9:05 pm
  67. I hate to always be the one to quote snopes. But that quote is unfortunately false :)

    http://www.snopes.com/quotes/jefferson/banks.asp

    Comment by RM — May 6th 2009 @ 7:32 am
  68. May 3, 2009
    Word count: 384

    Credit card companies usually show the Annual Percentage Rate (APR) that is being applied to your outstanding balance. But that is not the Effective Annual Rate (EAR), the actual interest rate you are being charged. The same goes for your mortgage interest rate.

    Below are the APRs and the EARs for credit cards whose rates are compounded daily, and for mortgages whose rates are compounded monthly.

    EAR IF COMPOUNDING
    APR DAILY MONTHLY
    5% 5.13% 5.12%
    6% 6.18% 6.17%
    7% 7.25% 7.23%
    8% 8.33% 8.30%
    9% 9.42% 9.38%
    10% 10.52% 10.47%
    12% 12.75% 12.68%
    15% 16.18% 16.08%
    20% 22.13%
    25% 28.39%
    30% 34.97%
    35% 41.88%

    Credit card APRs may be as high as 35%. But an APR of 35% is an EAR almost 42%. And those 6%, 8%, and 10% monthly payment mortgages are really 6.17%, 8.30%, and 10.47%, respectively. The higher percentage may not seem like much until you consider the difference in large mortgage payments.

    You can do your own calculations by using the following formula:

    EAR = [(1 + APR/n)n] -1 where n = 365 for credit cards and n = 12 for mortgages.

    For example: The calculation for a credit card rate of 15%:
    EAR = [(1+.15/365)365] – 1 = .1618 or 16.18%

    Step by step: Convert 15% to a decimal fraction, .15. Divide it by 365. Add 1. Then raise the sum to the 365th power. Subtract 1 to finally equal .1618, or 16.18%.

    Some advice:
    Don’t be tantalized into using credit cards to pay for your purchases – unless you can and will pay off the full credit-card balance at the end of every month.

    Stay out of the front door of your favorite clothing shops, electronics stores, and even department and discount stores. The moment you step across the threshold these stores aim “spending magnets” at you making it almost impossible to leave without spending some money, probably on something you can easily do without.

    Know the difference between wants and needs. You probably have several items in your home that you could do without. Just look around. Wouldn’t you love to return them and get your money back? Sorry, too late! When you absolutely need something wear side blinders like those on horses. Clop through the front door, pay cash for the needed items, then back out immediately.

    Peter Rosko, Ph.D.
    Morse Alumni Distinguished
    Teaching Professor of Finance, Emeritus
    University of Minnesota

    Comment by Peter Rosko — May 10th 2009 @ 1:16 am
  69. I had a credit card with Chase for years, I noticed last month, that my interest had DOUBLED.
    I called Chase, they were nothing less than rude when I asked about this-even transferring me to a voicemail, I found another credit card from Citi that very hour-they were offering 0% APR until the end of the month then 9% after that so I balance transferred and cut up my CHASE card.
    Obama’s stinkin credit card changes dont occur until NEXT year, until then, we are all sitting ducks for the Credit Card companies. We need change NOW not next year.
    I was listening to a radio program that interviewed a guy who was raised to 60% APR (he didnt say who the credit card company was-though he should have)

    Comment by merijoe — May 10th 2009 @ 8:02 am
  70. I just received notice from Bank of America that my gold master card credit line has been reduced by half. I have never been late in paying my statement and have never paid any interest on balances. Neverlheless….
    It appears that, since I have never been anywhere near the old limit in any one month in the 12 year history of using this card, I really don’t need as much credit as I originally applied for and received. It did serve me well on one occasion in purchasing a used vehicle right off the lot and gave me 30 days to find the funds from various money market funds and make the payment on time. That possibility is now gone but, at the same time, the example mentioned above is not likely to happen again.

    So what do I do? Complain? Do I really care? Should I complain along with throusands of others just on general principals and thus protect the rights of those who really need high credit lines?

    Please readers; give me some input and I will be glad to help out with letters, etc. I am retired and have some time on my hand to help out

    Comment by Bruce — May 17th 2009 @ 6:09 pm
  71. I had a Caille Lavie account, which I canceled 3-4 months ago because they received a payment from me a day after the due date and was hit with a $39.00 late fee. A month later, I sent in two separate checks. Only to be told those payments were posted towards the current month. They do not post payment towards your Caille Lavie account in advance. This left me with another late fee of $39.00. I am upset now, because I am trying to pay off a $200.00 balance. I receive a letter from SCA after I sent in another payment of $40.00 only for them to tell me…I will continue to be hit will late fees until the balance is paid in full. I communicated to SCA customer service rep. I am only able to pay $35.00 every other week and SCA account service department told me that I would still be charge a $39.00 late fee. The balance on the account is $128.00. Please never apply for a Caille Lavie account. They are misleading credit card company. You cannot make a payment in the store; if you pay by phone, there is a $12- $14 they charge for processing payment by phone and if your payment makes it to their location 1 day late, you will be charge $39.00 late fee. So, who is misleading consumers? I have learned all of these over the past 3 – 4 months. One would have thought Credit Card Company learned from Dell lawsuit. CONSUMERS PLEASE BEWARE!

    Comment by patty — May 19th 2009 @ 11:15 am
  72. I have had an AMEX card since 2004. I have never – not once in over 60 months – not paid my balance in full. Last month my card was cancelled. When I called, the AMEX people were extremely rude. The only reason they gave me was that I charged a hospital bill for outpatient surgery ( under my credit limit), which I paid off in full when I was billed. The rep said that it looked like I could not afford the bill. When I reminded her that I paid the bill in full, she said that didn’t matter. Why have a card if you can’t use it?

    Ginger – june 9

    Comment by Ginger Blair — Jun 9th 2009 @ 11:04 am
  73. I called Bank of America regarding my PIN. I was transfered to someone who kept asking me questions and more questions about my current job and finances. All of the sudden the man informs me that my credit limit has been reduced. About 1500 less of what my credit limit used to be. At that precise moment I asked the man to close my account. For years I was a happy customer of Bank of America … not anymore. Never late and always paying 3 weeks before the due date. Even paying three times the minimum.
    I had opened a checking account with a different bank. I do not want to know anything absolutely anything about that bank in my whole life.

    Comment by Luis — Jun 11th 2009 @ 12:01 am
  74. Just to keep this thread going well into June, I too have been struck by B of A and SunTrust Visa. In 24 hours, I got my available credit reduced by $19,000!!! In 24 freaking hours! This is going to affect my FICO score and it’s very sad. The most frustrating part, IT WAS OUT OF MY CONTROL! Paid on time, every time.

    If anything can be done, I’m in, let me know. Cash is king. That is what I’m doing from now on.

    Comment by Matt — Jun 21st 2009 @ 3:49 pm
  75. These credit card companies are playing hardball and being absolutely ruthless to boot. Last week I received a letter with two checks from Chase encouraging me to use their checks at a 2.99% rate for a 24 month period to transfer balances on my 12,000 limit. I was thinking about doing so and then today I received a letter saying my credit limit had been reduced to half to $6000.00 They are shooting themselves in the foot, because more and more people are going to have to file for bankruptcy due to them raising interest and raising minimum payments. I don’t mind my credit limit being reduced but I do mind since my balance is over 25%. So my FICO score is hurting . My goal is to pay off all of my cards and never use credit again. This may take some time, but I can’t let them make all of this interest money off of me over the last 20 years and suddenly pull the rug under my fee. Fuc****S

    Comment by Tracy — Jul 8th 2009 @ 6:53 pm
  76. Same thing here!! I heard a story fr two business partners of mine, that AMEX closed their accounts that had $0 balance on them. I was thinking they maybe missed a payment or 2 or had other bad credit.

    I was at the veterinarian office to have xrays on my dog, I have a $7,200 balance with a $20,500 credit limit. I went to use my Wachovia Credit Card (Which is now Bank of America…go figure) and the lady said “It was Declined”! I was so shocked and knew there had to have been a mistake with her credit card terminal, so I had her run it again.

    I have NEVER missed 1 payment, or made a late payment in my 15 year payment history, EVER!!! I called the 800 number on the back of my card to see what the issue was. I was transferred (3) times after verifying my security info with them. Once I got to the last rep, she started asking me questions about my job, what type of job, how long I’ve been there, how much I make annually. When she got to the 2nd question, I realized I TOO BECAME another victim of what the banks are doing to people!!

    Not only that, I have Equifax “Score Watch/Monitoring”. My credit took a HUGE ding cuz one of the major factors that impacts your fico score is your “Debt to Credit Ratio”. I had over $62,500 avail credit limit on various cards, now it shows I have TOO MUCH OF A BALANCE with little available. That’s because those banks are now penalizing the good credit people to protect themselves!!

    YES, there should be a class action lawsuit filed and a law put into place RIGHT NOW, that the FICO score and credit bureaus cannot use this to their benefit and hurt our scores!!!!

    This is beyond our control and just happened without our knowing. Unreal!!

    Comment by Mary Ann — Jul 10th 2009 @ 8:30 pm
  77. I’ve just had the same experience with BoA. After having been an excellent customer for the past 6 years they cut my $13,000 line of credit down to within just $70.00 of my balance with no warning. Their justification on my calling was that I “had outstanding balances with other creditors.” Of course I do… I have a car loan that I have paid faithfully for the last three years. My ex husband, also a responsible customer, had one BoA card canceled and another cut down radically when he inquired about a balance increase with which to make a large purchase.

    When I expressed concern that my painstakingly maintained near-800 credit score would now be ruined as this card would appear to be maxed-out, their representative incorrectly told me that my FICO score is only determined by my payment history, and my credit would not be impacted. I am livid not only that they did this to me, but that I was effectively lied to by a bank employee.

    My solution has been (to my great embarrassment, as I am an independent adult that makes a decent living) to take out a loan from the “Bank of Dad” with a fixed incorporated interest rate and term. I’m using this to immediately pay off the card so that they cannot use my sudden maxed-out status that they created as justification to raise my interest rates. They will not get a dime more interest from me.

    I’ve learned the hard way that good customers who are financially responsible in this country are nothing more than pawns, and will not likely be willing to use credit ever again. As soon as feasible I will be moving my business to a more reliable bank.

    Comment by Erica — Jul 12th 2009 @ 2:07 pm
  78. I paid off Chase completely a year ago, they gave me balance transfer offer lifetime for 4.9%, which i used, and I continue to get offers from them (but they won’t reduce my 27.99% rate oddly, and they know I won’t purchase anything on the card until that rate is reduced.)

    I pay always more than the minimum. In May, they gave me a payment holiday(?!!?) which I inquired about- they said i was good with my payments for a long time so that is a reward for that, but then immediately the next week, they driopped my line from 6800 to 5400, almost maxing me out in the process! They said I wasn’t aggressive enough in paying them down. The manager on the other end of the line sounded like he either didn’t give my account review the due diligence he claimed or was just making up excuses to vainly counter my very valid disputes on every reason given in their letter.

    I think that this needs to be taken directly to the banks in PERSON. Say you have a Chase bank or Chase Financial services office in your city. GO THERE, request to meet with an account manager, and lay a very hard line that you won’t take this anymore and demand they call account central. If they decide to call security instead, leave…. NOISILY. Or, start picketing problematic banks in your area and ORGANIZE. Letters and blog responses are one thing that get forgotten tomorrow, but visual impact is far more scarring to a banks image.

    Politicians- actually GO to their offices, or seek to approach them publicly with your stories and bank letter copies.

    Comment by Rich — Jul 13th 2009 @ 11:08 am
  79. Beth-I”m right with you, I’d make the trip to Washington and contacting my senator, because this needs to stop! Pardon the expression but we are getting screwed and AIG and all of these banks are getting bailouts that are being used for bonuses that were paying for. Where I’m from bonuses are paid when the company is in the black for a job well done, not a company that the tax payers are supporting!!! I’m outraged and angered by this! I work hard pay my bills on time each month only to have the knife stuck in my back. It’s time for our bailout.

    Comment by Victoria — Jul 15th 2009 @ 4:05 pm
  80. American Express lowered my credit limit from $20,000 to $6,700 with no reasonable explanation. I never been late on a payment, always paid more than required and this is how they screwed me.My credit score is 850 so how can they do that?
    From reading other comments, I feel bad for the people that went on vacation and had to be embarrassed when they found out that their credit card has been declined. That’s bulls…t.
    Blue from American Express sucks.No one takes this card besides Costco .They treat you like crap on the phone when you are trying to find out how all of a sudden they lowered your limit to make you max out the card and ruin your credit.
    Let me know what can be done

    Comment by Ania — Jul 17th 2009 @ 9:58 pm
  81. Boy am I glad to have stumbled upon this site. Each and every one of my credit cards has either slashed the limit to just above what I owe, or, if I haven’t used the card have simply cancelled it without warning. Three times over the last week, and on vacation, my cards were declined. Talk about embarassing.

    I thought it was just me, not that I’m glad that this has happened to all of you, but I feel better now.

    I don’t care about my FICO score anymore. These cards are getting closed. Credit cards are not our friends. They lure you in and then screw you. This is the wake up call I needed. Good luck to everyone.

    Comment by Tim — Jul 23rd 2009 @ 12:44 pm
  82. CHECK THIS OUT EVERYONE! I have FICO Score Watch thru Equifax. Under the section, “Understanding Your Score”, it shows you what is helping and hurting your credit score. “YOU’VE MADE HEAVY USE OF YOUR AVAILABLE REVOLVING CREDIT. Your FICO score evaluates your total revolving credit [?] balances in relation to your total credit limits on those accounts. In your case, this ratio of balances to credit limits is too high.

    Keep this in mind: This credit usage ratio is one of the most important factors to your FICO score, so you should work on paying down your balances. Your FICO score looks at the ratio of revolving debt, but not in which accounts the debt resides. Therefore, consolidating or moving your debt from one account to another will usually not help your FICO score since the same total amount is owed.”…

    So, this IS FOR SURE killing everyone’s credit score!!!!

    I have (3) credit cards with a total balance of $19k and HAD an available credit limit of $60k! (I have never had my total balance on my credit cards over $24k, ever, so this always reflected good) So, it all looks great right? Looking at this scenario, I’m using only 32% of my available credit.

    WELL, Bank of America goes and cuts my credit card from $20,500 to $7,500 with NO warning. I have a $7,300 balance on that card, so this now gives that particular card a 97% debt to available credit ratio..NOT GOOD NOW!!

    I just got an email yesterday that HSBC-The GM Card, reduced my credit limit from $13k to $9,750!! This just reduced my overall available credit ONCE AGAIN!!

    ** WHEN IS ALL THIS MADNESS GOING TO END?!!! WE NEED SOME1 TO STEP IN AND STOP THIS! WHERE ARE THE REGULATIONS AND LAW??? WHO IS REALLY HERE TO HELP THE AMERICAN PUBLIC? We have no freedom of speech and defense to protect our own credit scores, our credit cards being jacked, etc…

    HELP!!!!!!

    Comment by Mary — Jul 24th 2009 @ 2:41 pm
  83. Congress doesn’t work for you or I Mary. They work for the banks. I’m not speaking rhetorically. This is the fact and cause of everything you see happening.

    There’s no help for us as long as the American public keeps lying down. The clamp-down on credit is the symptom of much bigger problems in the economy.

    When people are hungry and rioting in the streets the tide might be turned, and I’m afraid there’s going to be a lot more ugliness than that between here and there- having our credit scores trashed will eventually be the least of our problems.

    If you’re looking for help, best to look Above.

    Comment by Ken — Jul 24th 2009 @ 8:33 pm
  84. Ken,

    More people need to speak the truth as you have. I agree completely. Until we do something drastic they will continue to run us over. It seems our reps do just exactly what we don’t want them to do. This is a prescription for a revolution. The only reason nothing has happen is because they have done there damage slowly. If they had done all their dirty deeds in one 10 year period there would have been war in this country. The public has been brainwashed into being passive sheep, and we are being butchered. The game is for government and TV to convince us that government is working for us. TV is owned by the corporations.

    Our government has been over thrown by the corporations. Our government has allowed, and encourage, corporations to move jobs overseas to China. At the same time allowed 50 million plus, illegals to invaded our country driving up costs, ie. hospital/medical, schools, police, prisons. gasoline, utilities…. And now the government and corporations have given homes loans and credit to the illegals as well as all other subprimers. These are the reasons for the collapse in our economy. The damage that has occurred warrants mass march’s by citizens, and more, for the damage they have caused. T. Roosevelt confronted business head on for the dirty deeds the “Robber Barons” were pulling, and he did so be cause he was concerned there would be a revolution in America. In the 1930’s FDR attacked the problems of the 1930’s because he too was concerned about a revolution. Like Thomas Jefferson said,”It’s good to have a revolution every once and a while.” We need a new Roosevelt or something.

    Comment by MS — Jul 25th 2009 @ 9:41 pm
  85. I just received a letter yersterday from Chase informing me that they are closing one of my accounts. This was originally Washing Mutual, but as we all know Chase bought Washington Mutual. They also lowered my limit from 5200 to 3600 on my other Chase account. I think my mistake was paying an IRS bill with it. I was trying to avoid paying penalty and interest and installment agreement fee(which is very high in most cases). Just what I get for paying my taxes as I am supposed to.

    Comment by Shirley — Aug 1st 2009 @ 5:11 pm
  86. I too have had my credit limits reduced: AMEX from 100000 to 17k, Bo f A from 75k to 25k and Chase from 80100to 35K. No balances carried, bills paid every month and NEVER any lates.

    I’m not big on conspiracies, but all of the banks want to charge us more on things we WILL buy. This is one way to lower our scores and charge us more money.

    Since I pay my bills in full and use their rewards, I’ll play and long as I can – but I never will trust them. Allays have a backup card available.

    Your best way to protect yourselves? Don’t carry any balances so the rates don’t effect you at all.

    Comment by Gary Prince — Aug 2nd 2009 @ 8:16 am
  87. I received a letter today from Chase (formerly Washington Mutual) informing me that my credit line is being decreased from $10,000 to $7,500. The reason(s) given were:

    Too Few Accounts paid as agreed (huh?)
    Total Available credit on satisfactory bankcards is too low (not true)
    Average length of time since accounts opening is too short (I’ve had this account for several years)

    I am totally baffled by this. I have had this card for several years and have ALWAYS paid on time and HAD plenty of available credit. Also, my May monthly statement had “0″ as the minimum payment. I called Chase at the time to ask if there was a mistake and they told me I had been selected to “skip a payment” if I desired. I told them that I was going to make the payment anyway and asked what the amount should be and was told to pay whatever amount I wanted.

    After receiving the letter today, I called Chase and pointed out to them that the reasons listed for decreasing my credit line were not at all valid. They told me to call Experian and stated they got the information from Experian. I then asked if Experian had just contacted them out of the blue and was told that Chase contacted Experian for an annual update.

    Seriously, the credit card companies are just trying to screw us – and it is succeeding. I’m not as worried about the decrease amount as I am about screwing up my credit which I worked so hard to establish.

    Comment by Lisa Raines — Aug 5th 2009 @ 10:21 pm
  88. I have had my credit limits dropped by Penny’s, Wamu (now Chase), Sam’s Club, Target and Account Central. I had never been late on a payment and always paid way over the minimum due. I assumed it was happening because I am doing a loan modification and am behind in my house notes. But after reading these comments I guess I’m not alone.

    Comment by Debra Kallenbach — Aug 12th 2009 @ 3:48 pm
  89. CHASE reduced my credit cards from a total of $15K down to $1500. I have 3 cards from Chase. Two have a 0 balance and the third has less than $150 on it. They said the decrease was due to an “overutilization” of the cards.

    Aren’t they breaking a legal contract????

    Comment by Diana — Aug 12th 2009 @ 6:58 pm
  90. Wait till you hear this one! I applied for a Charles Schwab credit card (we have over $200K on deposit with them) and ended up having three of our BANK OF AMERICA credit cards reduced/cancelled instead! That’s because the company who makes the credit decisions for Schwab also handles BofA accounts (FIA Card Services, 1100 N. King St., Wilmington, DE 19884). The woman who evaluated our Schwab credit card request had no access to see our Schwab balances and said that not only are they declining our credit card request, but since they also handle Bank of America’s cards, they decided to reduce our credit limits on two BofA cards to the current balances and close an unused card that had a $39K credit limit. That is sure to make our credit score plummet! We have never had a late payment,ever. The moral is (besides a big ditto to all of the above comments about BofA), is watch out who you apply with as they may be able to close your other credit cards!

    Comment by Darren — Aug 15th 2009 @ 2:28 am
  91. This happened to me today. I went to make a purchase on my credit card and it was declined. I knew I was no where near my $9000 limit because I had just made a $3000 payment (thank goodness). When I checked online my credit limit had been slashed to $4000 and I was just $22 away from being over limit. I have had an account with Chase Bank for years and years; never been late, never been over limit!!! So I checked my other account. and sure enough they dropped The credit limit just above my ourstanding balance. Fatherless idiots!!!!!I AM SO MAD I COULD SPIT IN THIER GREEDY LITTLE EYES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Where is the government on things like this, since it loves to mandate what John Q can do and can’t do, I am appalled.

    Comment by Lynda Friesen — Aug 21st 2009 @ 4:57 pm
  92. I have a 800 FICO and am thinking about applying for a home loan in a few weeks. I had a $23.3k limit on a AAA credit card (was MBNA when I got it, now BofA unfortunately). I thought it couldn’t hurt to ask for a credit increase to maybe increase my score just for the fun of it. I usually only charge $150 or so each month and pay in full.

    I got a letter stating that sorry, the wouldn’t do it.. then another letter the same day that says they decreased by limit to $15k (from $23.k). I should have never asked! They’re the ones that silently increased limits in years past, now they rip it back and affect your score!?

    I’ve always hated BofA and continue to do so now.

    Comment by Nick — Aug 23rd 2009 @ 12:09 am
  93. THERE IS NOTHING MORE FRUSTRATING THEN PAYING ON TIME EVERY MONTH, DOING THE RIGHT THING, KEEPING A LOW BALANCE, THEN BANK OF AMERICA TAKES ALL YOUR CREDIT AWAY AND FORCES YOU TO HAVE A MAXED OUT CARD.

    I WENT FROM HAVING A 4,000.00 BUFFER FROM MY LIMIT TO MY BALANCE NOW THAT IS ALL GONE

    Comment by disgusted — Aug 27th 2009 @ 10:29 am
  94. Wells Fargo did it to me i had a 9000 line with them never missed a payment paid like sometimes 2000 a month was never once close to my limit and they droppred me to 3350 what a bunch of crooks i contacted the bbb ftc and i talked to there excutive offices several times and none of them give a crap i hope there is a back class action law suit against wells fargo i have four accounts with them a mortatege and over 50 k in the bank bunch of pansies. i never missed a payment on anything the last six years they can go th HELL.

    DAVID

    Comment by dave — Aug 28th 2009 @ 2:31 pm
  95. CITIBANK DID IT TO ME TOO

    Have been paying my card down from being close to maxed out last Christmas.

    Last week it got slashed from 15700 down to 14000 leaving me with $120 to spend

    Reason: Too many accounts near their limit.

    Called them up and informed them they had effectively made it worse by reducing my account’s limit. . . This is not business it is politics in our banks. Our govt just bailed out Citibank earlier this year. Other’s have said it buy gold or pay the price.

    Comment by Jo — Oct 8th 2009 @ 4:21 am
  96. You are not alone. American Express and other large banks are performing these acts on thousands if not millions of perfect payment consumers, and the scope covers all areas of credit from personal cards to HELOCS. The media, as driven and owned by the banks would have ‘us’ believe that this act is a mandatory lifeboat response having to do with managing risk and loss precipitated by natural disaster credit-card reliance (since our government was out partying during these events and cutting birthday cake) and the mortgage fiasco which in fact was created by the banks themselves when they threw billions of dollars at unqualified consumers around 2001 with knowledge of their poor risk and just to make a buck. The truth is that the main banks, thanks to affiliations with the Federal Reserve, will always ‘win’. For the past 8 years of this crony administration the banks have not only made huge buckets of cash via the standard interest-rate way on cards but in addition, have been gloried by…(Read more of this comment) corporate tax breaks. Now the tide is turning and the current thieves will be driven from office in November via the peoples’ elections. Without the padding of corporate tax cuts many of the ‘medium’ banks are stressed and many are inventing new strategies of a final ‘cash-out’ before the next step is implemented in the New World Order when a global currency will eventually become the standard and the only ‘class’ will be high class with all others consigned to serfdom. How does this affect your standard consumer middle to upper class that historically pays their bills perfectly and is never late? Why they’re being squeezed out of the club, of course. Credit is not liquidity. Make no mistake. So with greed at the forefront, as always, driving the corporate bottom line, and especially with banks, they are sticking it to large group of long standing good faith customers without the slightest regard for damaging their credit. This becomes a temporary double-win for the banks as they incrementally raise interest rates to squeeze the last drop and chase the balance to unconscionably wreck the credit of good faith customers like yourself and drive you from the club. In order to understand why this happening, you should distance yourself from your personal picture and examine the larger picture objectively. The fact of the matter is that this is a planned operation by the main banks in conjunction with the Federal Reserve to gain substantial control over the populace, whittle down all but the highest class and proceed with the next step in the New World Order. What can you do in response? Well, you can quit spending on your cards and rip them up. Also, like the former poster stated, realize that any credit is a luxury and not a right and the credit card companies are within their rights to reduce your lines, even if the result is damage to your credit rating. Purchasing on credit can be addictive and destructive as it garners the illusion that one is wealthier than one truly is. Also, take time to do the math to find out just how much a gadget or gallon of gas will end up costing you if you put it on a charge card at 25% interest and never pay it off. We can be talking $12.00-$20.00 for a gallon of gas simply because only the minimum due was paid which, with the current exorbitant and rising rates, is 80% interest. Also, I know this sounds old-shoe to some, but when you put certain politicians in office, by virtue of commission (voting for them) or omission (not voting at all) and you go to sleep at the same time and delude yourself into thinking nothing will change, you’ll wake up with everything changed and you’ll pay for the party. Also it is important to realize that this effect of the undoing of America has not occurred overnight nor in a bubble but is a result of good people having done nothing over an extended period of time. Good people complaining yet doing nothing, not voting, living off credit, beyond their means and without proper judgment or foresight into the larger picture at hand. Quit living beyond your means if it involves using credit and savor the feeling. You can feed the negativity created by dwelling on their injustice or you can learn new ways of living to free yourself from the clutches of institutionalized banks. Or, you can calculate the damages the banks have in fact caused you by ruining your good credit and might be surprised to find that the amount of those damages just might equal the very amount you owe them. What a coincidence. Wash? Watch Aaron Russo’s movie: Freedom to Fascism. Wake up America. Party’s over

    Comment by new world order — Nov 14th 2009 @ 1:50 pm
  97. Just happened to me. BOA sent me a balance transfer e-mail. I went to their site and asked for a transfer to pay off another card. Their response was to reduce my credit to only $250 over what I owe and refuse a transfer. My credit limit was reduced by $9000 only 7 days after I received a statement showing I still had that credit.

    Comment by JG — Feb 18th 2010 @ 7:40 pm
  98. Just last week Capital One decreased my credit line to a hair above the money I owed. So basically this means I cannot buy anything at all since I’m at the max.

    Joke’s on them: I had just finished paying off the card the day before I got the call about the decrease in credit.

    Same thing happened to my husband and his Discover Card. I am so relieved to hear it is happening to a lot of people. We have excellent credit scores according to all credit reports.

    Comment by PM — Feb 18th 2010 @ 8:40 pm
  99. After years of having credit pretty close to maxed out, a good payment history (I even miss a payment every two years or so so they can charge me 29.99), my wife and I have made it through our advanced degrees, raised a kid to his teens, and have finally got the income to pay down our debt. My plan has us consumer debt-free in two years, even with the car payments!

    I just started paying cards waaay down last month, and some totally off.

    My first target for total elimination, Citi. I paid it to a zero balance. As a reward, they cut my limit from $2800 to $300 after years of good payment history. I paid several others down to about half their balances.

    Then, I learned that BOA lowered a loan I have with them to just over the limit. I didn’t notice because I am not really using credit, just paying it down. Other creditors are following suit – it’s a domino effect caused by an arbitrary decision against a good customer.

    I learned that now Citi thinks I have five cards “maxed out,” thanks to these lowered limits, even though my consumer debt is lower than it has been in two years and is steadily decreasing every month. I pay off, they lower rates, credit takes a hit. Thanks, jerks!

    You know what, this credit market deserves to be cut back. I don’t care about any unintended consequences, I want revenge. I don’t care if Sioux Falls (credit card capital of the world) is swallowed up by the earth. I am tired of hearing of these companies, who were rolling in money, and then ruined the economy, crying about “protecting profits.” Learn to live with less, you bastards! Don’t screw over the people making you money.

    The government tries to reign in these scum and they respond by hitting the consumer. Totally pennywise. Time for a federal usury law, I think.

    I recommend against citibank as a lender.

    Prof. ELIZABETH WARREN, Harvard Law School: “I don’t know any merchant in America who can change the price after you’ve bought the item, except a credit card company.”

    Comment by Wade — Feb 22nd 2010 @ 5:00 pm
  100. Excellent analysis Wade. I would suggest not to take the suffocating effect your credit card balance limits are taking, personally. I’ve think your analysis of what is happening to your credit limits is spot on, and it is somewhat dysfunctional.

    Just be grateful that as you pay down your debt less and less of your income is stolen by the usurious interest rates that you are being charged every month.

    In the end, having 10,000 dollars in savings is far better than owing 10,000 dollars so keep going down that road and don’t look back. Plus, as you pay for things immediately, and pay for things from your own economy, you become the best stimulus package of all.

    Comment by Daily-Protest — Feb 22nd 2010 @ 6:45 pm
  101. Thanks–these are great tips (watch the mail for notices, sign up for emails warning of nearing your limit). I usually ignore any mail from my credit card issuers b/c I do everything online. I don’t even look at the bills b/c I most likely already saw them online first, and the one in the mail isn’t even up to date. Last year, USAA lowered the limit on one of my cards from $14,000 down to $5,000! That’s just over 1/3 of what it used to be. I haven’t used that card in a year or two, so I had no balance. I always paid on time when I did have a balance. Since I don’t use the card anyway, it shouldn’t matter, except that our credit scores are partially based on debt-to-available credit ratio, so this credit decrease has broader implications.

    My credit union informed me of a rate increase if I didn’t contact them and decline. This increase would apply to my existing balance. I declined the increase to lock in my current rate on the balance, and they closed my account from further use. However, this was not before they tried to talk me out of it. I told them I didn’t appreciate that they were raising my rates, considering interest rates are at historic lows, so there is no real justification for increasing my rates, since the rate they get is lower than before, and I have an excellent credit rating. She told me some nonsense about how they didn’t have a choice (??) blah blah blah. How insulting. I cashed out my rewards points and told them to go ahead and close it.

    I recently canceled my Victoria’s Secret card (WFNNB) b/c they also informed me of a rate increase. That’s fine with me, too, since I never carried over any balance month-to-month. I only used it for the rewards points.

    In the end, I am using my credit cards less, and therefore the banks aren’t profiting off me as much as they used to. I can walk away satisfied knowing that I’m not enriching their fat greedy asses the way I used to. The joke’s on them. I only hope everyone else is also at least trying to use their cards less, otherwise the joke’s on you, and you are only rewarding and enriching these fat cats who plunged the world into a great recession (or depression?–real unemployment is much higher than is being reported, since the numbers don’t count those whose entitlements ran out, or are underemployed). Do you really need that Louis Vuitton bag? Plus, with the tacky LV intials all over your bag, you’re nothing but a pathetic fool who paid a lot of money to be a walking billboard. If you can help it, say “no” to credit cards!

    Comment by Michelle — Feb 25th 2010 @ 11:10 pm
  102. Well i’m through with these companies and credit in general.
    They recently lowered my credit limit and caused havoc in automatic payments that were not honored.
    The only leverage i have is that I owe them money. I’m swiss so could not care two cents about good credit, bad credit, no credit.
    To my advantage i also have cash in private banks.
    So you know what…they can keep the debt and write it off…(i’m being polite).
    They hurt my business, treated me like “spit” today over the phone…I will give them nothing, until they undo what they did.
    What is the point of being a good customer since 1994 if we are treated like scum?
    This has to end…the voice of the people is the voice of God!

    Comment by GGiori — Apr 1st 2010 @ 10:59 pm
  103. I just wanted to add my two cents in. Although there seems to be plenty posters already. I had 7 BoA cards with about $5000 total. They started reducing the credit limits where I couldn’t charge anything on them.
    I went from 2500 to 500 credit limit and they closed 3 cards with 0 balances. Today, I found out my AT&T Universal card went from $30000 to $1000 and it had a $109 credit balance on it.

    I’m glade I’m getting rid of all my cards. However the reason to have them (emergency spending), isn’t going to help. I was counting on that card to pay for two weddings and carpet my house. I guess that isn’t going to help now.

    All the payments I was making to the banks are now going into the savings. If I need money, I’ll transfer it over to checking. Screw the banks. And I can laugh at the 20-30 zero intrest applications that come to my mailbox every week.

    Comment by DRussell — Aug 8th 2010 @ 2:04 am
  104. The banks may have done you a favor. Why run up debt at this stage of the game knowing what we now know about how banks treat their customers who are in debt.

    Owing banks money you don’t have with no collateral is not a good idea in this day and age, even with collateral it is not a good idea.

    Click on my name to view my protest blog.

    Comment by Alessandro Machi — Aug 8th 2010 @ 3:44 am
  105. i got a letter from chase about reduced my credit limit from 4500 to 1000 the reason is ” Sufficient credit available with us” wtf is that? that is BS. i never late or missed my payment ever! and i use the card no more than 10% of the credit limit, the highest balance i had was 20% and even that i always knocked it down to 10% before the bill print out ( i did this because i want to get the reward) and i always paid off my credit card every month too. anyone know what should i do with this stupid chase? close it or ..?

    Thanks

    Comment by Forrest — Aug 13th 2010 @ 12:43 am
  106. Wow, I have never heard of that one before. “Sufficient” credit available from us.

    If you had a higher amount that you owed, they could have reported that your revolving credit is too high.

    Amazing. I would suggest that you look at as a lucky sign. If you can make a thousand dollars work for you, start saving your money instead. Imagine actually having a couple of 20,000 CD’s and that you get a check every month for a 80 bucks from each CD.

    What would be so terrible about that?

    Comment by Alessandro Machi — Aug 13th 2010 @ 1:20 am
  107. I have heard of the sufficient credit reason when you are denied for a CLI, but never for a CLD.

    BoA just cut all my lines after years of being a good customer–I even have a mortgage with them. The odd thing is, the reason they decreased the lines was b/c collections and public records were on my credit report when they did an account review. I told the credit analyst that was completely inaccurate. As she was checking things for me I pulled up my files through a monitoring service I use and sure enough there was an error according to my alerts, but I pulled fresh reports and nothing was there. About the time I was done the analyst came back on the line and said there had been a mistake because she didn’t show anything of that nature on my report now, but they wouldn’t be reinstating my previous credit lines anyways. What?

    What’s worse is that I had to talk to FIVE different CSRs before I got someone that was competent enough to even get me to the analyst, then the analyst was super rude and condescending. When the call was done I thanked her for motivating me to refi my mortgage and take advantage of the historically low rates that are out there right now.

    I am done with BoA forever. Everything I have with them is getting moved to a credit union or small bank. I don’t need any business that makes that much money off of me (mortgage interest) treating me poorly. I am sure my local credit union would love to have that monthly interest and speaking from experience they treat their customers with respect instead of talking to them like they detest them or like they’re dead beats when they have never paid a bill late to them or anyone else. (And I don’t think they should talk to a person that way regardless. Give the credit or don’t. You don’t have to be rude and nasty.)

    Comment by SCS — Aug 26th 2010 @ 6:28 pm
  108. got the email today from AMEX. without warning dropped my available credit from $15k to $4k… right above my $3800 balance. (i have been with them 5 years, NEVER late on a payment and my credit score is 750) now it looks like my card is maxed out.

    this is going to really screw up my credit. f- them, they have lost my business for sure.

    is it even legal to arbitrarily screw up someone’s credit?

    Comment by chris — Jan 13th 2011 @ 4:06 pm
  109. Same thing here! Perfect credit, never 1 late payment EVER. I’m very oon top of my bills, pay them a week early than due date. For years and years, they kept “increasing” my available credit. Then, within the last year, every credit card I had, which is only (3), reduced my xredit limit! For example, I had 1, with a $15k avail credit, only $3k on the balance, for a total of $18k. They reduced my “available credit” to $3200, which NOW LOOKS, to other creditors looking @ my credit report, as if I’m the one who’s maxed out…when in reality, I had $15k available 2 me, for my great credit history!! The 3 major credit bureuas must have a new coding, showing something like this,” “chase bank” 2005 increased credit to $18k, 2006 avail credit $18k, 207 avail credit $18k, 2008-2010 avail credit, $18k. Chase bank reduced credit to $3200, on their part.”. This is rediculous!! We have no voices unless we stand up!! Speak out !

    Comment by MaryAnn — Jan 13th 2011 @ 4:18 pm
  110. Here’s what I believe these criminals have done. They cut r credit cards to what we owe. Then they raised the interest rates sky high from 13-19% and more. It is risky for them to do this. This is why they cut our limit to what we owe, so you can’t retaliate by running up the cards then stop paying. The gov allows this USURY, WHICH USE TO BE A CRIME, because they bailed out so many banks. So we not only have to pay for the financial industry in taxes, we have to pay in EXTREMELY HIGH INTEREST RATES known as usury. This is probably why bank stocks have gone up so high even with a bad economy. Whats to keep you from stopping all payments. The statute of limitations is 7 years.

    Those MF’s in New York need a lot of money to live in those multi-million dollar apartments. I believe that they are at the top of the food chain, and it is all passed down to all the other New Yorkers, therefore, in a way we r supporting all of them.

    Comment by m — Jan 15th 2011 @ 7:00 pm
  111. Let us start a class action lawsuit thea gets Mmoney for the Plaintiffs…because the problem is that the Plaintiffs in Class action suits end up with zip and the lawyers get all the money.

    EVERYONE CALL YOUR SENATOR AND CONGRESSMAN

    Chase just totally destroyed my FICO score. I have never been late, had a FICO of 780 and they cut a $40,00o credit line down to $1,000.oo because I was careful and only owe $800.00 on the account. I was totally responsible but the bastards, whom our tax dollars are paying their obscene bonuses are destroying us. They with their corruption and the Wall Street Bastards created this depression, we bailed them out and they are ruining our credit scores and WHERE IS OBAMA???Meeting with the Chamber of commerce this week, sucking up to them so the poor baby can get elected in 2012. So much for “change!”

    They are ALL scum, destroying this country.

    We need to learn from the Egyptians!

    Comment by mil patric — Feb 7th 2011 @ 11:45 pm
  112. Let us start a class action lawsuit that gets Money for the Plaintiffs…because the problem is that the Plaintiffs in Class action suits end up with zip and the lawyers get all the money.

    EVERYONE CALL YOUR SENATOR AND CONGRESSMAN

    Chase just totally destroyed my FICO score. I have never been late, had a FICO of 780 and they cut a $40,00o credit line down to $1,000.00, because I was careful and only owe $800.00 on the account. I was totally responsible, but the bastards, who our tax dollars are paying their obscene bonuses are destroying us. They with their corruption and the Wall Street Bastards created this depression, we bailed them out and they are ruining the people who pay on time and handle credit responsibly… and WHERE IS OBAMA???…Meeting with the Chamber of Commerce this week, sucking up to them so the poor baby can get elected in 2012. So much for “change!”

    They are ALL scum, destroying this country.

    We need to learn from the Egyptians!

    Mil

    Comment by mil patric — Feb 7th 2011 @ 11:47 pm
  113. I just closed my AMEX card today. I’ve been an account holder since 2003. I have three credit cards altogether. My credit limit was originally $2,500 in 2007. It was lowered to $1900 making it unusable in 2008. I have one other card that has never been lowered. And my third card was lowered in 2008 around the same time as AMEX and it hasn’t been lowered since. Since 2008, I paid $700 on my balance and that doesn’t include any new purchases. So they call me today to tell me that they lowered my limit to $1200. All the lady could say is that we’re not a credit reporting agency and Experian is reflecting your credit negatively. However, I have a 700 credit score so I don’t understand how the credit limit could drop like that. Appalled, I told them to close my account. I will pay off what I owe and that is it with AMEX. Eventually, I will work my way down to one card, Wells Fargo, which provides the best service out of Citi and AMEX. I was only keeping AMEX for emergency use, but only allowing a $200 balance on the card renders it useless to me and I’d rather pay cash now. I don’t understand why they did that. They have definitely lost me as a costumer and I don’t recommend anyone using them. I work two jobs just to pay that nearly $700 in old purchases plus $700 in new purchases and that’s how they help me. Fine. Keep their card.

    Comment by Janine — Sep 5th 2011 @ 10:03 pm
  114. Janine, you make it sound like you’re doing them a favor because you “work two jobs just to pay that nearly $700 in old purchases plus $700 in new purchases.” That is why they lowered your limit. You’re not doing them a favor, you made purchases using their money; you paying it back plus the interest rate you agreed to when you used the card, and in a timely manner, goes without saying. They have no obligation to, and it’s not in their best interest to “help” you. You are already overextended. If Experian is “reflecting your credit negatively” it is because you you have too big a percentage of your income already tied up in monthly payments on what you’ve already charged. AMEX’s concern is that pretty soon you’ll have charged more than you could ever pay off, and you’ll declare bankruptcy or default on the account. So now you know why they did that. Best advice? Pay off all your unsecured debt ASAP. Even if that means doing without things like cable TV, or anything other than the most basic cell phone service. Commit to not putting anything else on the credit cards you have, and to paying some portion of the existing debt every month until you’re debt-free.

    Comment by spookiewon — Oct 11th 2011 @ 2:02 pm
  115. I’m not really sure what’s going on with all of you, but I have 7 cards with a total available credit of $40,000.00. I have asked for, and received, credit line increases on 4 of those cards in the last year. In each case I simply clicked the “Request Increase” button on the website and an increase was approved on the spot. Could it be because carry no revolving debt except for the occasional “X months no interest” balance if there’s an opportunity? I currently owe $200 on one card because I bought some jewelry “6 months no interest” but I’ll pay that off before the 6 months are up. I wonder if you are getting your credit reduced because you have too much of your available INCOME tied up in paying your existing debt.

    Comment by spookiewon — Oct 11th 2011 @ 2:27 pm
  116. Paying the balance in full every month is the ideal situation, but unfortunately that’s not possible for those who are already in debt and working to pay it all off. Although you are absolutely right that higher limits can lead to potential temptation. If working to get out of debt, it’s best to stop spending on the credit cards altogether.

    Comment by How to reduce debt in San Antonio — Nov 8th 2013 @ 10:28 pm
  117. If you can’t pay off the debt every month but CAN raise your monthly payment to 5% of the total owed you will keep from going even farther into debt and you will get a much improved principle to interest rate charges ratio, in other words, more buying power for the same amount of total debt.

    Sounds crazy but it’s true. If one’s 2% monthly minimum payment for all of their cards is let say 500 dollars a month, they would have been MUCH BETTER OFF owing 500 dollars a month on 5% monthly minimum payment cards instead because it would mean overall less debt and a superior re-spend versus actual take away in the form of interest rate charges.

    Comment by DEBT NEUTRALITY PETITION — Nov 9th 2013 @ 2:41 pm

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