Friday, May 2, 2008

YOU KNOW THINGS ARE BAD WHEN THE FEDERAL RESERVE TAKES A MORE PROGRESSIVE STAND ON CREDIT CARD SCAMS THAN THE DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATES

NANCY TREJOS WASHINGTON POST The Federal Reserve and two other banking regulators are set to unveil today one of the most aggressive efforts in decades to crack down on the credit card industry, prohibiting practices such as arbitrarily raising interest rates on outstanding balances.

The proposed regulations, which could be finalized by year's end, would label as "unfair or deceptive" practices that consumers have long complained about. That includes charging interest on debt that has been repaid and assessing late fees when consumers are not given a reasonable amount of time to make a payment. When different interest rates apply to different balances on one card, companies would be prohibited from applying a payment first to the balance with the lowest rate. . .

The proposal also seeks to regulate overdraft protection, banning companies from assessing a fee unless the customer chooses not to opt out of that service.

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