Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Scary News About Your Spending Habits and How They Affect Your Credit Score

Credit card companies have always tracked their cardholders' spending for three main reasons:

1) To be able to market goods/services to you that your profile indicates you may like

2) To detect fraud

3) To assist law enforcement agencies

However, credit card companies have now found a fourth, and very scary thing to do with this information...determine your creditworthiness...Here are some trends in your spending that could result in a lower credit score and the reduction/elimination of your credit card limits:

1) Shopping at discount stores/thrift stores and purchasing generic brands

2) Shopping at the same stores that other people who have defaulted on their credit card debt shop at

3) Using your credit cards for the vices...cigarettes, alcohol, massages, casino gambling, online gambling, bail bond services

Congress is now investigating credit card companies for utilizing these practices in determing to lower credit limits, cancel credit lines, and deny applicants for credit. During 2010 and 2011, we can expect to see some public hearings about this issue. In the meantime, it seems like "what's done is done" but that credit card companies will be more careful in using this sensitive information (at least until we hear the results of the congressional hearings).


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