Consumer Payment Card News

Fee Climb

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Average late payment fees on credit cards will climb by 3% this month, the largest one month jump in the industry’s history, as more issuers raise fees above the $29 level. U.S Bank recently joined the trend in the wake of fee increases by MBNA and Discover, which went into effect this month. U.S. Bank is now charging a $27 or $35 late fee, depending on the number of delinquencies occurring within twelve consecutive billing cycles. Advanta was the first card issuer to institute $35 fees for holders of its business card products. In 2000, Fleet Credit Card Services began charging a $35 late fee on all its card products including the new “Fusion smart VISA”. Citibank boosted late payment fees to $35 in August 2001. Discover and MBNA have instituted new late fee structures effective this month. Both issuers will now charge a $15 late fee for balances under $100; a $25 fee for balances between $100 and $1,000; and a $35 fee for past due balances above $1,000. On average, late payment fees, among issuers with portfolios over $100 million, have increased 5.5% over the past twelve months from $27.10 to $28.58, according to CardData (http://www.carddata.com).

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