Citi announced it will stop beating up its cardholders with “universal default” and the “any time for any reason” increases. The move comes on the heels of growing criticism in a Democratic-controlled Congress over credit card practices and abuses. Citi says the only reason the rates and fees will increase before the card expires is if a customer pays late, exceeds the credit limit or pays with a check that bounces. When the interest rate on the card is linked to the prime rate, the rate would change only as the prime rate moves up or down. The “universal default” elimination is effective immediately. The “any time for any reason” changes are effective immediately for new customers, will be implemented for existing bankcard customers by April and will be reflected in Citi’s customer communications by summer. For more information visit: “http://www.citi.com”:http://www.citi.com.