Consumer Payment Card News

AmEx Credit Card for Argentina

American Express launched a new credit card for Argentina yesterday offering an interest rate about 25% lower than competitors. The American Express Credit Card charges an interest rate of 38.7% in pesos or 19.6% in dollars. The average card interest rate for Argentina are 53.8% in pesos and 24.4% in dollars. Cardholders may pay in dollars or pesos. There is no annual fee for the first year however the fee is $95 per year for basic cardholders and $60 per year for each additional cardholder afterwards. The Argentina card follows previous roll-outs of a new AmEx credit cards in Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Australia.


American Express Argentina today announced the launch of a new credit card, backed by the Company’s quality customer service and the possibility of financing purchases at an extremely competitive interest rate.

American Express already offers consumers in Argentina its traditional Charge Card, Gold Card and Corporate Card which are payment instruments where outstanding balances must be paid in full at the end of each month.

“We are proud to be launching this card in Argentina, our first credit card in the Latin American Region,” remarked Roberto Cavalcanti, President Latin America and Caribbean; “as our markets come alive with new products, we steadily achieve our goal of aggressively growing our business worldwide.”

“With the new American Express Credit Card, our Company increases and consolidates its share in this market niche, offering users a new payment tool with unique benefits that differentiate it from other products,” said Oscar Girola, President and General Manager of American Express Argentina S.A. “Among its benefits, the most outstanding are the quality customer service that backs it and a very competitive interest rate.”

In addition, Ruben Gross, Director of Financial Products underlined: “The new Card has been designed to cover the needs of consumers who value the kind of service offered by American Express and who prefer a revolving credit card as a payment alternative. With the introduction of the new Credit Card, American Express is offering a whole new range of alternatives to our customers.”

The main benefits of the new Credit Card are:

— It permits Cardmembers to pay a minimum monthly amount and finance the balance of their purchases at a very convenient interest rate, which allows them to save up to 25% annual interest charges, compared to other credit cards.

— Cardmembers have the possibility of participating in the Membership Rewards Program, the most complete rewards program in Argentina which grants one point for every dollar spent on the American Express Credit Card.

— It has the same quality and service as the other American Express products.

— Total protection if the card is lost or stolen anywhere in the world, replaced usually within 24 hours, with no charge.

— Access to Express Cash through 135,000 ATMs around the world including Red Link tellers in Argentina.

— Personalized attention for travel services in more than 1,700 offices in over 130 countries.

— Assistance Express: Global assistance while traveling, including medical and legal assistance.

— Automatic Travel Insurance each time a Cardmember uses his American Express Card to purchase a ticket to travel.

In reference to the product, Oscar Girola added, “The new American Express Credit Card, supported by outstanding financial benefits and customer service, represents the most modern concept of a payment instrument.”

The new American Express Credit Card has also been successfully launched in the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Australia.

American Express is a diversified worldwide travel, financial services and network services provider founded in 1850. It is a leader in charge and credit cards, stored value products, travel, financial planning, investment products, insurance and international banking.

                             HOW DOES IT COMPARE
                                INTEREST RATES

                              COMPARATIVE CHART

                                         Pesos   Dollars
                                           %        %
    AMERICAN EXPRESS                      38.7     19.6
    Other Issuers - Issuer A              55.8     27.4
    Other Issuers - Issuer B              57.2     24.2
    Other Issuers - Issuer C              46.2     22.0
    Other Issuers - Issuer D              54.8     24.2
    Other Issuers - Issuer E              54.8     24.1

    Average interest rate                 53.8     24.4

    % Savings                             28.0     19.6

                             PRODUCT INFORMATION


    Introduction            The American Express Credit Card launched in
                            Argentina in April, 1997.

    The American Express    The card is issued to individuals subject to
     Credit Card            Company approval and can be used to pay for goods
                            and services in over 200 countries and

    Interest Rates          The Company launched its card with a highly
                            competitive rate of 3.18% a month in pesos
                            (38.70% APR in pesos) and 1.64% a month in
                            dollars (19.6% APR in dollars)

    Spending Limit          The American Express Credit Card has a spending
                            limit established according to each persons
                            creditworthiness and income.

    Payment                 Minimum repayment is 5% of the outstanding balance
                            or $10 whichever is higher, plus specific charges
                            such as interest charge, installment plans and ATM
                            cash advances.

    Financing Plans         Access to financing is in 3, 6, 9 or 12 month

    Billing                 Split Billing, Monthly statements may be paid in
                            dollars or pesos.

    Emergency Card
     Replacement            Lost or stolen American Express Cards can be
                            replaced normally within 24 hours in Argentina, or
                            through any American Express Travel Service office

    Assistance Express      An optional insurance program offering medical,
                            dental or legal assistance while traveling.

    Automatic Travel
     Accident Insurance     American Express gives insurance when tickets are
                            booked on the Card, this includes coverage up to
                            $50,000 in travel accident insurance.

    Purchase Protection     Pay with the Card and virtually all retail
                            purchases will be insured against theft or
                            accidental damages for 90 days at no extra charge
                            when no other insurance policy applies.

    Membership Rewards      A major benefit available to Cardmembers is the
                            American Express Membership Rewards Program - a
                            loyalty program giving enrolled Cardmembers
                            points for every purchase on the Card.  These
                            points can be redeemed through an increasingly
                            wide range of partners including airlines and
                            hotel and restaurant groups.

    Telecommunications      24-hour service 365 days a year.  Calls free of
                            charge from abroad and within Argentina.  Hotline:
                            Telephone Service Center which operates in the
                            U.S. and Canada with Spanish language facilities.

    Fee                     The American Express Credit Card will be issued
                            free in the first year for basic Cardmembers and
                            up to three supplementary cards.  After that an
                            annual fee of $ 95 will be charged basic
                            Cardmembers and $60 for each supplementary

    Express Cash            Cardmembers have access to $300 every 21 days at
                            more than 135,000 ATMs all around the world
                            including Red Link Tellers in Argentina.

    Travel Offices          More than 1,700 American Express Travel Officer,
                            in more than 130 countries which offer Cardmember

    Airport Lounge          Salon Centurion available at Ezeiza Airport.

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