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The most recent issue of Money Magazine had an interesting article about protecting yourself from new “credit card traps.” In it, they highlighted a number of changes that banks have introduced to improve their bottom line in the face of recent credit card legislation.
Three of the big fees changes that they highlighted were:
- Fees because you’re not spending enough. Some Citibank cardholders are apparently being hit by annual fee of $30-$90 if they spend less than $2400 per year on their card.
- Fees because you’re not swiping enough. Some FigthThird cardholders are being hit with a $19 fee if they don’t use their card for a year.
- Fees… Just because. Bank of America has introduced annual fees of $29-$99 on a variety of new and existing cards.
There have been a number of other charges, as well, including new or increased fees on balance transfer credit cards, fees for participating in credit card reward programs, and so on. In other words… Fees, fees, fees!
The lesson here is to keep a close eye on your credit cards, and be sure to read any mailing from your card issuer. What you don’t know can hurt you (or at least your pocketbook).