Credit Card Interest Rates are Stable, but Change is Looming for 2013

Share Article

Credit Card Select found no change in December’s Interest Rate Report, but political moves could drastically affect rates after the New Year.

Credit Card Select

Though as of now, obtaining credit is at the easiest it has been in recent memory, consumers have to prepare for a potential reversion in accessibility and agreeable terms.

Despite the surge in spending and credit card swiping, November’s interest rates remained constant through the first weeks of December. Credit Card Select found that low interest rate credit cards continued to hover just above 11 percent while bad credit credit cards had an average rate of 20.20 percent.

Maintaining their hold on the 14 to 16 percent range, in order of lowest to highest rate, balance transfer cards, business cards and rewards cards remained relatively close to the national credit card rate average of 15.53 percent.

With little fluctuation throughout the year – and most change being positive decreases in rates – 2012 appeared to be the year of stability for credit consumers. Finding some distance from the recession and settling into the major changes brought about by the CFPB and financial legislation, many have been able to take a sigh of relief when applying for credit cards and using plastic.

But the shift towards consistency may be threatened in 2013 as the pending fiscal cliff draws near.

Credit Card Rates and the Fiscal Cliff

If an agreement over the upcoming change in taxes isn’t reached by the end of the year, experts predict that the country could be thrown back into a recession. This outcome would likely return banks and creditors to the stricter standards held during the years prior to 2012.

Though as of now, obtaining credit is at the easiest it has been in recent memory, consumers have to prepare for a potential reversion in accessibility and agreeable terms.

Preparing for the Worst, Hoping for the Best

While many credit consumers can feel like they are at the mercy of the looming political decision, they can prepare now and make credit card usage easier.

Credit Card Select recommends that for those interested in applying for a new card, acting now can help consumers take advantage of the rates while they remain steady and approvals remain lax. And for those unwilling to commit to a card before January, there are more long-term options that can help make getting a credit card easier even if a recession returns.

Credit expert Wayne Sanford told Credit Card Select that simplifying the application process can be a matter of maintaining good habits for just a few months.

“When applying for a credit card, keeping balances at approximately 20 percent over the course of a few months makes applicants look like a better credit risk as someone who does not ’max out‘ their cards,” says Sanford.

Americans may have to wait to discover whether or not the nation will be thrust back into economic turmoil, but they can start arming themselves now by staying informed and striving to improve their credit profile.

Credit Card Select releases a bi-monthly interest rate reports to ensure consumers are able to easily track the current rates in each major credit card category.

National Average: 15.53%

Low Interest: 11.07%

Balance Transfer: 14.00%

Rewards: 15.56%

Student: 17.59%

Business: 14.75%

Bad Credit: 20.20%

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Dustin Christensen
Follow us on
Visit website