Nationwide, and probably on your street as well, credit card issuers are making life tough for consumers by raising rates and adding fees on otherwise good customers.
The recently passed Credit CARD Act of 2009 is meant to protect non-risky customers from arbitrary rate hikes, among other things.
Now, Senator Chris Dodd of Connecticut is asking Federal Regulators to review recent actions taken by credit companies and possibly force them to undo these punishing moves. Since the law doesn’t go into effect until 2010, he wants Bernanke and company to start regulating retroactively to the beginning of 2009. Specifically, he wants:
credit card companies to review every six months any account where the interest rate has been raised since January 1, 2009. It also directs the companies to reduce the rate if the customer has become less of a credit risk or the circumstances that warranted the increase are no longer present.
It’s basically taking the spirit of the law recently passed and helping out non-risky customers now instead of later. Of course, in light of what we recently learned about how credit issuers decide what makes a person risky, I’m sure there are still plenty of loopholes available.
Sen Dodd seeks review of credit card rate hikes, Karey Wutkowski, Reuters, July 9, 2009