Ask Jean: Lowering Credit Card Interest Rates - Jean Chatzky - Making money make sense
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Ask Jean: Lowering Credit Card Interest Rates

iStock_000005912769XSmallWhy would the Visa Credit Card people at my bank tell me the reason they cannot reduce my interest rate is due to the “Credit Bureau Act of 2009”?????? What exactly is this? Is this just a put off tactic or is there something to this? I’ve never heard this mentioned by advisors who say to ask for a reduction and give examples of people who get it. Thanks for your help.

Hi Betsy,
You’ve got me. The Credit Card Act of 2009 may be what they’re referring to, but I don’t know of anything in it that would prevent them from reducing your original interest rate. It prevents them from raising your interest rate on new purchases unless you pay 60 days late. What it doesn’t do is force them to reduce your interest rate. That they don’t have to do unless they feel like it and often they don’t feel like it unless they think they’re going to lose you as a customer. Here’s what to do: Call customer service back and ask again. If they say no, speak to a supervisor. And if that supervisor says no, speak to his or her supervisor. If you still strike out, look for a cheaper card to transfer your balance to (go to to find one). But don’t close the old card unless the annual fee is ridiculous. Closing it will take your credit score down.

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