« From denial to acceptance: the story of a budget | Main | Turn and face the future »

December 19, 2021

Giving credit where it's due - and where it's not

By Deirdre McMurdy, Sympatico / MSN Finance

In keeping with the tone of the times, U.S. regulators have introduced consumer-friendly new rules for credit card issuers: as of July 2010, issuers can only raise interest rates on new cards and future purchases, but can't jack up the charges on current balances. Furthermore, card holders will get 45 days notice before any changes are made to any of the terms on an account.

Not surprisingly, consumer advocates are now urging the introduction of similar rules for Canada - including one that would compel card issuers to pass along interest rate decreases in a timely way.

That's a very popular stance to take and this next point is sure to be, well, really unpopular.

It's just a reminder that people who don't pay their credit card balances off on a monthly basis are carrying high-risk, unsecured credit - the most rare and expensive form of credit that exists, especially in these illiquid times. If they were corporations, they'd be paying a massive premium for that privilege.

Unlike the old Dire Straits song, you can't get your money for nothing - or your chicks for free.



Post a comment


Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...