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How Credit Cards Work

How to master credit card roulette Written by Geoff Williams Many credit card articles are about the importance of using a credit card responsibly.  This one isn't one of those. Credit card roulette is a game, but it's definitely not for kids. Or people who are cash poor. Or people with a nervous constitution. If you think "credit card roulette" means deciding which of your credit card ...
My credit score is 678, I was turned down by Capital One because of "insufficient income". What to do? Written by Lynnette Khalfani-Cox Q: My credit score is 678, I have no other credit cards except a gas card that I pay off each month, recently went through a divorce, and was turned down by Capital One because of "insufficient income". What to do? A: Due to recent credit card reform, you personally must demonstrate sufficient income in order ...
Is it better to pay off your credit cards in full every month or leave a manageable balance? Written by Geoff Williams An excellent question with kind of a complicated answer, since I can easily say "yes" in both cases. Ideally, you should always pay your credit cards in full every month. Yes, you'll hear that credit issuers like to see a debt-to-credit utilization ratio of about 25 to 30 percent, meaning that if you have a credit ...
6 critical lessons to teach your teen about credit Written by Lynnette Khalfani-Cox If you're the parent of a teenager, at some point he or she is going to ask you about two things that may make your heart skip a beat: getting a driver's license, and getting a credit card. Before your son or daughter can get behind the wheel of a car with a license, he or ...
Before you say yes to a store credit card Written by Geoff Williams You've clipped your coupons. Scanned the ads. Cleaned out the trunk of your car. You're ready to shop for your family, your friends, your co-workers and the aunt you see only once a year, but are you ready for the question you'll invariably be asked every time you whip out your wallet? "Do you have a ...
Who's been scanning your credit card? Written by Jennifer Rose Hale Sometimes an invention can solve a problem. At other times, it can leave you wondering: Was this a problem to begin with? Think of the difference between a TV remote control and a Flowbee. Everyone likes to change the channel without getting out of the Barcolounger, but how many people want to cut hair using ...
A look inside the national credit card hotline Written by Geoff Williams The number isn't as catchy as 911 or 411, but for beleaguered credit card holders, 1-855-411-CFPB (2372) could end up being a financial lifeline. In case you don't know what that last phone number is, that's the direct toll-free hotline to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the brand new Federal agency launched on July 21. If ...
Credit cards with chips: Are the urban legends true? Written by New technology usually comes with its share of consumer concerns. It's no surprise that urban legends and myths have proliferated about the new EMV chip credit cards. Here are a few of the most common, along with our expert opinion as to their veracity:PINs don't matter. True. Researchers from the University of Cambridge discovered that a fraudster ...
Teaching Johnny how credit cards work Written by Geoff Williams In recent years, high schools and universities have been trying to teach students how to manage their money, bank accounts and credit cards. Moms and dads, who have been teaching their kids about money for generations, have likely been discussing money more, in recent years, ever since the economy began faltering. And now, credit card ...
Should you pay your utility bill with a credit card? Written by Geoff Williams Paying your utility bill with a credit card? For some credit card users, it could be a smart idea. For others, not so much. And in some cases it can be impossible, for instance, if the utility doesn't accept credit card payments, which is sometimes the case, although debit cards seem to be accepted more readily. And ...

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