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New National Survey: Credit CARD Act A Success, But Plastic Safety Net Persists

A new national survey by the nonprofit research and advocacy group Demos finds that new credit card rules have succeeded as intended, but that many financially strapped Americans continue to rely on credit cards to buy food, prescriptions and other basic necessities. This is fresh evidence that confirms earlier CRL research, which showed that a majority of low- and middle-income families depend on credit cards to pay for basic living expenses or to deal with unexpected financial emergencies like a doctor’s visit. Scroll down to see CRL’s lastest research that shows new credit card rules have made pricing more transparent and curbed many of the industry’s worst practices—those that used tricks and traps to ensnare cardholders in high-cost interest rates and penalty fees—and that predatory credit card pricing was bad for consumers and for credit card companies.

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  • Numbers Game: The True Cost of Credit Card Mail Offers
    Published: Oct 25 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    Credit card offers have grown increasingly complex over time. Using a straightforward measure of complexity—the total number of numeric figures that appear on a credit card direct mail offer—this...

  • Analysis of Federal Reserve Research on Behavioral Scoring
    Published: Aug 11 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    Analysis of Federal Reserve Research on Behavioral Scoring: On “Report to the Congress on Reductions of Consumer Credit Limits Based on Certain Information as to Experience or Transactions of the...

  • Comment: Potential Violations of the Credit CARD Act
    Published: Jul 7 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    CRL and consumer coalition express concerns about credit card issuer potential violations of the the Credit CARD Act of 2009. Problems related to penalty rate disclosures, variable rates, payment...

  • A Just Fee or Just a Fee?
    Published: Jun 8 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    CRL research report finds that even after the new credit card law and credit card reform, credit card late fees still penalize cardholders while increasing profits for credit card banks and credit...

  • Capitalizing on New Credit Card Consumer Protections
    Published: May 6 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    This brief explains the benefits of credit card reform by showing that cardholders paying more than the credit card minimum payment since the passage of the new credit card law, the Credit CARD Act...

  • Comments on Proposed Reg Z Rules Re Implementation of Credit Card Act Provisions
    Published: Apr 14 2010      Issue: Credit Cards

    CRL and other consumer groups comments to the Federal Reserve on proposed credit card rules related to the implementation of the Credit CARD Act and penalty rates and fee increases.

  • Dodging Reform: As Some Credit Card Abuses Are Outlawed, New Ones Proliferate
    Published: Dec 10 2009      Issue: Credit Cards

    New CRL credit card research identifies hidden and deceptive credit card issuer tricks and traps continue, even after the passage of the Credit CARD Act of 2009 and pending Federal reserve rules....

  • Consumer Financial Protection Agency Could Have Stopped Abuses that Plague Americans Today
    Published: Oct 23 2009      Issue: Auto Financing, Car Title Loans, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Credit Cards, Mortgage Lending, Overdraft Loans, Payday Loans

    CRL shares stories of everyday people affected by financial abuse and emphasizes the need for the Consumer Financial Protection Agency to ensure that they and others are protected from such abuses...

  • Consumer Financial Protection Agency Could Have Stopped Abuses that Plague Americans Today
    Published: Oct 23 2009      Issue: Auto Financing, Car Title Loans, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Credit Cards, Mortgage Lending, Overdraft Loans, Payday Loans

    CRL shares stories of everyday people affected by financial abuse and emphasizes the need for the Consumer Financial Protection Agency to ensure that they and others are protected from such abuses...

  • CRL supports a strong, non-preemptive Consumer Financial Protection Agency
    Published: Oct 19 2009      Issue: Auto Financing, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Credit Cards, Mortgage Lending, Overdraft Loans

    CRL letter to Members of House Financial Services Committee outlining support and opposition to various CFPA amendments on states' rights, credit-related insurance, and carve outs for credit unions...

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