credit card fees

Prepaid Cards: 5 Good Reasons to Put Them in Your Wallet

Lately, many banks and celebrities have been encouraging us to switch from credit or debit cards to prepaid cards. And even though these tools have their downsides, we can think of five situations when prepaid cards are the right plastic for the purpose.

New Credit Card 'Checkout Fee' Arrives This Weekend

This Sunday marks the first day that consumers could start paying an extra fee just for using their credit card to make purchases. But don't panic: It's unlikely to kick in right away, especially at the biggest retailers.

Prepaid Cards: Banks and Celebrities Love Them ... But Should You?

When financial industry reforms in Washington nixed some of banks' favorite ways to drain extra profits out of your credit and debit cards, they turned to a slightly different piece of plastic: the prepaid credit card. And celebrities are looking to profit from them too.

Americans Keep Fleeing Banks, Flock to Credit Unions Instead

Credit unions have a long way to go before they threaten the financial dominance of commercial banks. But Americans are moving billions of dollars of their business in that direction every year, and there's good reason for that trend to continue -- and for you to jump on the bandwagon.

10 Common Money Problems That Need Fixing Now

The election may have put economic issues like the fiscal cliff in the spotlight, but there are still plenty of consumer-level financial pain points that need fixing. Here are 10 of the most common consumer money problems.

3 Reasons Why Credit Card Surcharges Are an Empty Threat

Long-suffering businesses have won a big concession from Visa and MasterCard: the right to add surcharges to credit card purchases. But despite the panicky rhetoric that followed the deal, there's reason to believe not many retailers will take advantage.

How Soon Will You Start Paying More to Use Plastic?

Until now, merchants weren't allowed to charge those buying with credit cards a higher price, although they could offer discounts for cash. But last week, an antitrust settlement opened the door for surcharges -- and could impact the way you shop.

Merchants May Win the Right to Charge Credit Card Users More

Merchants have long sought the right to charge customers more for paying with a credit card, which would help them defray the cost of accepting plastic. That's currently banned by Visa and MasterCard, but deal in the works could change that.

Consumer Agency Softens Credit Card Fee Limit

The Obama administration's consumer financial watchdog agency is backing off a plan to limit big upfront fees on credit cards. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau acknowledged Thursday that its proposal would increase costs for cardholders and allow banks to charge more in fees.

Brokerage Credit Cards: Can One Boost Your Portfolio?

It's easy to understand the allure of brokerage credit cards. They're cash-back cards that route the the kickbacks into a brokerage account for capital appreciation. Free money creating more free money: What could possibly go wrong?

The 5 Bank Stocks Facing the Biggest Legal Risks

Aftershocks from the financial crisis are still hitting U.S. banks: They're getting sued over everything from bonds stuffed with fraudulent home loans to improper foreclosures to credit card fees. Here are the five banks with the most to lose from those lawsuits.

Should You Take That Retailer's Credit Card Deal?

Chances are you've been pitched a retail card more than once. Usually it goes something like this: "Will you be saving 10% using your [name of store] card today?" The hope is you'll find the prospect of a discount alluring enough to sign up. But should you?

Worst Credit Cards of 2011: The Plastic Hall Of Shame

We Americans can't live without our credit cards -- but there are a few varieties of plastic that should be kept out of consumers' wallets. Here's CardRatings list of the five Worst Credit Cards of 2011 (plus one that you might want to reconsider).

Don't Spend This Settlement Check All in One Place

Sometimes it pays to wait; sometimes it doesn't. Just ask the roughly 10 million cardholders who were part of the Foreign Currency Conversion Fee Antitrust class action lawsuit settlement. After a decade of legal wrangling, the settlement funds are finally being disbursed -- but a suit this large can dilute even $336 million.

Less Need Now to Read Your Credit Card's Fine Print

It appears that complaints from consumers and regulators about the lack of credit card transparency at banks have not fallen on deaf ears. According to CardHub.com's 2011 Credit Card Application Study, the 10 biggest issuers of plastic have significantly improved transparency this year.

Credit CARD Act: One Year Later, How's It Going?

During the battle over Credit CARD Act, much talk focused on what the legislation would -- and wouldn't -- do. A year after the law rolled out, what's the word now? Here's an on-the-ground look at how card issuers and consumers are adapting to the new landscape.

How to Tell If It's Time to Switch Banks

The consumer advocates at the Center for Responsible Lending have released a checklist of tough questions people should ask their banks to make sure their needs are being met -- and and to ensure they aren't paying unnecessary fees.

Amex Sued by Feds for Anticompetitive Merchant Rules

The Justice Department filed an antitrust lawsuit against American Express Monday, alleging that the financial institution has been engaging in anticompetitive practices. Justice also said it reached a proposed settlement with Visa and MasterCard over similar charges.

As Some Banking Fees Fall, Others Will Rise

As new laws clamp down on some credit card and account fees, banks are likely to find other ways to offset the lost income. Among the possibilities: Hefty increases in annual credit card fees or an end to free checking.