Bank of America Avoids Credit Card Repricing, Pleases Washington

Bank of America continues to win fans on Capitol Hill this month, with back-to-back revelations of stimulus repayments and consumer-friendly credit card policies. At the beginning of October, Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis told lawmakers that his company was prepared to begin repaying federal TARP investments. In addition to paying back the $45 billion on loan from the Federal Reserve, the bank will make a dividend payment of $713 million.

Meanwhile, Bank of America's customer service commitment earned applause in the nation's capitol. Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd released a letter from the bank on October 5, confirming that Bank of America would refrain from making the sweeping changes to its credit card accounts that caused lawmakers to heap criticism on its competitors.

Instead of repricing accounts, closing credit lines, and adjusting finance charges in advance of new credit card laws in 2010, Lewis assured lawmakers that Bank of America would maintain the status quo for its accountholders. Drastic changes to credit card accounts by other lenders have caused some lawmakers to propose early enactment of new lending regulations.