This archive contains credit cards news stories, articles, expert columns, and Q and A's from the editorial team at Creditcards.com





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Making minimum payments versus closing a card account -- Getting the card out of delinquency, paying on time are the important things ... (See Delinquent)

Debt shaming: Cruel and unusual or creative and effective? -- Its purpose is to control financial behavior by humiliating a person who borrows or owes money. ... (See Debt)

Withholding payment over late pay dispute unwise -- Find another way to express your displeasure or else collectors will come calling ... (See Dispute)

Behind on child support? 9 ways you could be made to pay -- Those who fall behind face a legal system that prioritizes swift collection on behalf of children, which can make life miserable for those who don't pay ... (See Support)

With balance transfers, watch your individual card utilization -- If transfer will eat up available credit, expect a credit score hit ... (See Transfer)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18% for ninth week -- Dec. 7, 2016: The average APR on new card offers held still Wednesday despite multiple small rate changes, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Adding second card may boost thin credit file -- Adding a new card may help sagging score, but paying off debt in collections may help even more ... (See Credit score)

Fed: Card balances up $2.3 billion in October -- Credit card balances continued to inch toward $1 trillion in October, according to the Federal Reserve's G.19 consumer credit report ... (See Debt )

Purchase protection benefit survey 2016 chart -- Do any of your credit cards offer additional purchase protection benefits? Review this chart to find out. ... (See Purchase protection chart)

Purchase protection survey 2016: Which cards offer them -- Using credit cards to buy holiday gifts? Your purchases are likely protected, as 83 percent of credit cards boast added purchase benefits, according to our survey ... (See Protection)

No cards required: New ATMs more accessible to disabled -- Upgraded ATMs and smartphone apps make banking and shopping easier. ... (See ATMs)

Costco 2% Executive rewards limited to primary accountholder -- Purchases made with the additional "household card" not counted toward the annual reward certificate that Executive members get ... (See Costco)

Detecting, preventing senior card fraud, abuse -- Seniors are more vulnerable to card fraud, but there are some protections you can put in place ... (See Fraud)

Taking credit card fees out of employees' tips -- Yes, you can take card fees out of charged tips, but your employees may resent the practice ... (See Tips)

Video: 4 creative ways to wrap a gift card -- Step by step, we'll show you how to make your gift card beautiful ... (See Gift card wrap)

Yes, rates will rise on closed accounts with balances -- An exception in the federal CARD Act lets issuers pass along Fed rate hikes, and those are coming ... (See Closed )

How to avoid 5 traps of balance transfer cards -- Paying late and not erasing your debt can be costly mistakes ... (See Balance transfer)

Elderly dad can't cover card bills and assisted living -- Adult daughter asks if she can just stop paying on dad's card debt ... (See Debt)

How four families rein in their holiday spending -- From an all-cash Christmas to traveling together, you can celebrate on a budget ... (See Holiday budget)

Small credit line? Pay early to boost your score -- Knocking down the balance quickly keeps your credit utilization low ... (See Early)

Card delinquency hits 15-year low -- It's another sign of U.S. consumers' improving finances ... (See Delinquency)

Average card APR remains at 15.18 percent for eighth week -- Nov. 30, 2016: The average APR on new card offers didn’t budge Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Average credit score climbs in Experian study -- The U.S. consumer's average credit score rose 4 points in the past year, nearing pre-recession levels, according to the credit bureau Experian ... (See Scores)

Can I use a card that I found on the floor? -- Paying with a card you found on the floor can lead to fines or jail time, a criminal defense attorney says ... (See Found)

Poll: Women, men disagree on how they divide spending -- Who controls spending? 'We do,' say women. Men say, 'I thought we shared' ... (See Spending)

4 ways credit can boost millennials' charitable giving -- With credit cards, it’s possible to support positive change with every charge. ... (See Charity)

Do metal credit cards cause problems with airport security? -- Those elite cards made of metal could cause issues at airports if you try to take them through a metal detector ... (See Metal)

Rev up holiday rewards with your card's shopping portal -- Portals are an easy and lucrative way to maximize rewards points -- if done right ... (See Portals)

Can you dispute an honest credit mistake? -- Lack of interest payments on a deferred payment deal tanks husband's credit score ... (See Mistake)

Deep in debt after college: Where to start? -- With multiple debts in default, but better job prospects, it's time to get a plan ... (See Debt)

Your options when a parent is financially irresponsible -- A child can take over with power of attorney or guardianship ... (See Take over)

Mixed credit files: How to avoid them, fix them -- Every Jr., Sr. and Smith beware: People with similar or common names are at risk of having credit report mashups ... (See Mixed files)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 23, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers stayed put Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Deceased dad left trail of fraudulent accounts -- A grown son discovers dad used his info to open card accounts in his name ... (See Theft)

Smartphones shift holiday gift-buying to the bedroom, bathroom -- Millennials most likely to holiday shop while prone or on the throne, survey finds ... (See Smartphone shopping)

How to maximize credit card rewards while holiday shopping -- Gift yourself some extra reward points while buying gifts for loved ones. ... (See Rewards)

How to avoid credit card problems aboard a cruise ship -- Surprise holds, fraud freezes and going overboard with onboard expenses can all be avoided ... (See Cruise)

What are my rights regarding credit card surcharges? -- Many businesses impose surcharges when customers use a credit card for under a certain amount. However, there are laws in place to protect you from being charged extra unfairly. ... (See Surcharges)

Son made $6,000 in unauthorized card charges? Report it -- There may be legal consequences for your son, but if you don't, you'll be on the hook for his charges ... (See Unauthorized)

Video: 4 ways to save money shopping online for the holidays -- You don't need Black Friday to score deals ... (See Holiday shopping)

Facing the consequences for unauthorized shopping spree -- He gave her his card number to pay rent, she went online and splurged. Now it's getting ugly ... (See Spree)

Withholding payment after dispute goes against you -- Severe credit damage awaits if you don't pay up after losing a dispute ... (See Withhold)

Who owns consumer data? CFPB launches inquiry -- U.S. watchdog agency will examine choice, security and control of digital financial information ... (See Data)

Poll: Sharing credit cards common, but can bring problems -- Sharing a credit card account strengthens bonds, but encourages snooping ... (See Poll)

Rate survey: Average card APR stuck at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 16, 2016: The average APR on new card offers stayed at 15.18 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Travel credits offset hefty annual fees, but programs differ -- It’s important to check the fine print before you shell out a hefty annual fee ... (See Travel credits)

How canceling a new card can hurt your credit -- Even if you never used it, a hard inquiry was generated when you applied ... (See Cancel)

Best hotel cards: Fall 2016 -- Our panel of experts weighs in on the best card to rack up hotel rewards points. ... (See Best)

Holidays bring a surge in retail cards, study finds -- Number of cards, amounts owed, delinquencies all projected to rise ... (See Retail cards)

Infographic: Contactless cards set to flood US -- Next generation of chip cards may speed adoption of tap-and-go payments ... (See Contactless)

Exclusive perks can make retail store credit cards a good deal -- Bank cards are better for everyday use, but if you love a specific brand, go for it ... (See Store card)

13 ways to make sure your identity is stolen -- How easy is it to get your identity stolen? Here are 13 easy ways ... (See Theft)

Am I liable for grown son's business debt on shared card? -- What to do if a child is an authorized user on your card, racks up business debt and can't pay ... (See Debt)

2016 holiday shopping and credit guide -- Wise use of cards can put money your pocket and keep debt off your back ... (See Holiday)

2016 holiday card perks and rewards -- During the holidays, many card issuers offer bonus shopping rewards and special experiences ... (See Holiday specials)

Consolidate debt into high-rate personal loan? Don't -- A 29 percent loan may be convenient, but the terms are terrible ... (See Condolidate)

Balance transfer can help reduce new grad's card debt burden -- A 21-month 0-percent deal can reduce the pain of repaying high-interest debt ... (See 0%)

6 personal finance tips for military spouses -- Frequent moves, job changes can take a toll on finances and careers, permanent change of station, ... (See Tips)

Find the reason for a sudden 100-point credit score drop -- Start by reviewing ‘credit score factors’ listed on your report ... (See Drop)

6 end-of-year steps to protect your credit -- With the big spending months closing in, take steps to keep your credit under control ... (See Year-end)

How Trump's election may affect credit, consumers -- US consumer watchdog agency may be leashed ... (See Trump and credit)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 9, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained near record highs Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Even with a fee, 0% balance transfer deals can offer savings -- Moving high-interest debt to a 0 percent card is usually worth a small fee ... (See Transfer)

Video: 3 ways to help your kids build credit -- Add a child as an authorized user, establish a checking account, and help them learn about money ... (See Kids and credit)

It's tough to be sure if a purchase qualifies as rewards-eligible -- Look for program disclosures, but they aren't always detailed on what qualifies for rewards ... (See Eligible)

How to rebuild credit after a business setback -- After a business setback or bankruptcy, repay your debts, learn from your mistakes, and get back in the credit game ... (See Rebuild)

Millennials boosting retail 'un-gift' card sales -- Millennials are driving significant growth in retailer-specific gift cards, but they're ignoring the gifting part and using the cards themselves ... (See Un-gift cards)

Fed: Card balances up $4.2 billion in September -- Credit card balances continued to push toward the $1 trillion mark in September, according to the federal government ... (See Fed)

Can you update a client's credit card expiration date? -- If you have a client's card on file that you are allowed to charge for services and the expiration date has expired, can you guess what the new expiration date is and add it without checking first? ... (See Expired)

As online fraud spikes, here’s how to safeguard your accounts -- Protect your devices with strong passwords. That's just one step you can take to reduce your risk as e-commerce fraud soars ... (See Fraud)

What happens when you drop out of a debt management plan -- If you stop paying, the debt will not go away, but the benefits of the plan will ... (See DMP dropout)

The case against credit card piggybacking -- The odds of something going wrong are high and it's better to let others build their own good credit habits ... (See Piggybacking)

7 ways rewards cards can trim holiday costs -- Use your rewards cards to pay for gifts with points, save at shopping portals and fly home using airline miles ... (See Rewards)

How to restore your good credit score to great -- Examine your recent loan-related activity to find what caused the drop ... (See Score)

Blockchain could spur credit card rewards revolution -- Blockchain technology, which powers the bitcoin, could change the way we use credit card rewards ... (See Rewards)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.18 percent -- Nov. 2, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained fixed at 15.18 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Fraud alerts: Your credit's first (and free) layer of security -- A fraud alert notifies lenders that they should take special precautions to verify your identity before extending credit. But it comes with limitations -- and hassles ... (See Fraud alerts)

My ex-girlfriend charged over $7,000 on my card -- The issuer may not consider the charges fraudulent if she had permission to use the card ... (See Card)

Headed to a credit repair company? Know what to expect -- Hiring someone to fix your credit can be a positive step, just know who you are dealing with ... (See Fix)

New card accounts rise to near pre-recession levels -- Number of new accounts at 85 million, up 11 percent in the past year ... (See Accounts rise)

Simple strategies for increasing your card rewards -- First, shift monthly spending from cash and checks to credit ... (See Rewards)

2016 airline gift card comparison chart -- Several airlines offer gift cards, but their terms and conditions vary so comparison shop before making a purchase ... (See Gift cards)

Does a business have the right to charge a card on file? -- If a once-loyal customer stops paying, investigate before charging ... (See Invoices)

Video: Use your credit card points to pay for a haunted getaway -- Use your credit card rewards to help pay for a haunted getaway to some of America's most haunted hotels. ... (See Haunted)

Can't afford monthly card payment? Try these options -- There's no easy way to delete debt, but you do have choices ... (See Debt)

Card debt will be charged interest even if account is closed -- Even if a credit card is closed, the lingering balance will continue to accrue interest until the debt is paid off ... (See Interest)

At festivals, wristbands are the new credit cards -- Wristbands are becoming more popular at major festivals as a form of payment, allowing attendees to leave their wallets at home. ... (See Wristbands)

Autopayments, though convenient, can backfire -- Autopay may be convenient, but sometimes it's best to make payments manually ... (See Autopay)

Small-business owners are more credit savvy than consumers -- Small-business owners beat consumers in managing credit ... (See Business )

Survey: Average card APR remains fixed at 15.18 percent -- Oct. 26:2016: Online card fraud rises, while card-present fraud drops due to EMV switch, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Get bankruptcy trustee approval prior to applying for credit -- If still in Chapter 13, you need approval before you can apply for a new credit card ... (See Credit)

No-annual-fee cards with the best perks, rewards -- Infrequent travelers, homebodies can get cards with good payouts ... (See No annual fee)

CFPB orders halt to 'security interest' debt collection practice -- Navy Federal ordered to stop freezing customer accounts after fine issued ... (See CFPB)

Can you use US credit cards in Cuba? -- Card transactions require internet service, and Cuba’s internet access is spotty. ... (See Cuba)

SIM-swapping scam lets fraudsters drain your accounts -- If your smartphone goes dead suddenly, someone may have hijacked it ... (See SIM fraud)

What to do if you suspect card fraud by a customer -- How to prevent a purchase being made with a fraudulent card. ... (See Fraud)

No card, no problem: Pay with your ring, watch, bracelet -- The card of the future may just be your scarf, jewelry or fitness tracker ... (See Wearables)

Keep credit utilization low when refinancing mortgage -- Even if you don't carry a balance, high card use can hurt ... (See Refinance)

Help! I maxed out 5 cards to 'help' online boyfriend -- Retired woman falls for scam, racks up $35,000 she can't pay back ... (See Scam)

Video: Inside the dark web -- Welcome to the dark web, where criminals can steal your identity anonymously. ... (See Dark web)

Yes, worry about a 30-point discrepancy in your credit scores -- Some variation is expected, but big differences merit investigation ... (See Scores)

Chart: 2016 Retail Card Survey data -- Interested in opening a store card? Our 2016 survey data offers store-by-store details to help you find the right one for you ... (See Chart)

2016 Retail Card Survey: APRs climbing, sign-up deals fading -- We surveyed all the cards from the top 100 retailers, and nearly half carry rates higher than 25 percent ... (See Retail card survey)

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18 percent for second week -- October 19, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained at 15.18 percent Wednesday for a second week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Turning to credit to fund pricey addiction rehab -- As a last resort, your credit cards can provide a lifeline to recovery ... (See Rehab)

How to access elderly parent's credit reports -- If you suspect card fraud, the best way to find out is through a credit report ... (See Fraud)

Best airline cards: Fall 2016 -- The Citi /AAdvantage Platinum Select card and the British Airways Visa Signature Card tie for Best Airline card of Fall 2016. ... (See Best airline cards: fall 2016)

How your card may reimburse canceled trip costs -- Some cards offer trip cancellation protection, but you have to meet all the criteria ... (See Trip)

Bobbi Rebell's money moguls' 'Financial Grownup' moments -- ShreShrewd money managers reveal their financial 'aha' moments in Rebell's new book ... (See Rebell)

How to avoid paying convenience fees on utility bills -- Utility companies may charge a convenience fee if you pay by credit card. ... (See Convenience fees)

8-credit-mistakes-made-by-the-credit-experts -- Everyday cardholders can learn from gaffes made by gurus ... (See Mistakes)

Don't fall into the deferred-interest trap -- Pay late by a day and you face a huge penalty ... (See Deferred)

Robo-comments on payday loans clog regulation-making machinery -- A record 1 million comments on a federal payday loan rule will prolong its review, but thousands of pro-payday comments are suspiciously alike ... (See Payday)

Micropayments help debt management, credit scores -- Typically, lenders will allow multiple payments, but if not, find out why ... (See Payments)

Infographic: 'Us' cards versus 'me' cards -- In a new survey, 47 percent of Americans reported sharing all of their credit cards, while 37 percent indicated they only have separate cards ... (See Sharing cards)

Small balance shows you use credit, helping your score -- Scoring formula quirk rewards you for having tiny balance ... (See Balance)

Video: The psychology of bill avoidance -- Take small steps to deal with that which you dread, a professor says ... (See Bills)

Compare best sign-up bonus rewards cards -- In our survey, 6 cards deliver upfront rewards worth more than $1,000 ... (See Bonus)

Rate survey: Average card APR falls to 15.18 percent -- October 12, 2016: The average APR on new card offers fell to a nine-week low on Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Ask for a lower APR; you just might get one -- If your credit's in good standing, the odds of being granted a lower APR are in your favor ... (See APR)

Take control of pesky recurring card charges -- Automatic renewals easy to forget, sometimes hard to turn off ... (See Recurring)

Navy Federal fined $28.5 million for debt collection tactics -- Biggest US credit union strong-armed its members, CFPB says ... (See Collection)

Infographic: What's most financially important when -- A new survey shows that for 3 in 10 millennials, putting money into savings is their top financial concern ... (See Millennial savings)

Calculate your rewards card's value: 8-point checklist -- Take count of what you get before paying a big annual fee ... (See Value)

Travel reward cards: How to avoid pitfalls -- Canceling a rewards card after using the bonus can save money on the annual fee but also affect your credit ... (See Rewards)

Brexit, pound's plunge bring a UK shopping discount -- Online shoppers can save 10 to 20 percent, and may even get free shipping ... (See Brexit)

Credit card surcharges can be costly for business -- For the moment, California law allows these charges ... (See Surcharges)

How to cancel a debt settlement contract -- You can escape, but you'll still have to deal with the debt ... (See Cancel)

Social Security benefits protected from garnishment -- As long as your benefits are direct deposited to your bank, creditors can't take them ... (See Debt)

Fed: Card balances grew $5.6 billion in August -- Credit card balances continued to surge toward pre-recession levels in August ... (See Credit)

How Clinton or Trump presidency could impact card lending -- The winner of this November's presidential race could affect consumer protection and banking laws ... (See Cards)

Credit card delinquencies rise but remain near historic lows -- Cardholders have learned their lesson and pay down card debts, says the American Bankers Association ... (See Debt)

Don't close your credit card accounts to win a mortgage -- "Too much credit" is old, bad advice some mortgage lenders cling to ... (See Mortgage)

Video: What is your credit utilization ratio? -- Your credit utilization is how much credit is available to you versus how much of it you actually use. ... (See Utilization)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.22 percent -- October 5, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained near a five-year high for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

If mom opens cards in your name, it's family fraud -- Start with a conversation, then get a police report ... (See Fraud)

Consumer agency finalizes prepaid card regulations -- Standardized fee chart makes it easier to compare costs ... (See Prepaid)

Unsteady income? Traditional debt-paying advice doesn't apply -- Debt repayment rules differ when you're not getting a steady paycheck ... (See Income)

Understanding how airline rewards programs work -- Airlines have changed the structure of their reward programs, but still have great offers if you know how to earn miles. ... (See Miles)

Take a businesslike approach to improving your credit -- Want to boost your credit score and increase your borrowing power? Ask a small business owner for financial advice ... (See Credit)

How to avoid unwanted purchases on company credit card -- To prohibit employees from purchasing certain items, employers can use MCC codes for help ... (See Company cards)

Rolling card debt into a mortgage? Consider alternatives -- You risk your house when you convert debt from unsecured to secured ... (See Mortgage)

Use home sale proceeds for new home first, debt later -- Buy a new home first, create emergency fund and use what's left over for student loan debt ... (See Sale)

Video: How EMV chips are made -- A look behind the scenes at an ultra-secure credit card factory where small but complex smart card chips are made. ... (See EMV cards)

The big chip card switch: a year of living with EMV -- Has the EMV chip card shift been successful? What we can expect of our cards in the near future. ... (See EMV )

Being added as authorized user can boost credit age, score -- Young to credit? Your parents' well-aged card could help ... (See Age)

Best cash back credit cards: Fall 2016 -- Simpler is better for our winning cash back card, the Citi Double Cash card ... (See Best cash back credit cards)

Poll: Holiday retail season starts too darn early -- Most are annoyed at ever-earlier store decorations, but millions have begun shopping ... (See Too early)

Credit card debt down across the board -- Regardless of age, education or income, we dropped debt ... (See Debt down)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at record high -- September 28, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained fixed at a nearly five-year high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Once balance is paid off, your credit limit is restored -- New to credit? Here's how charging and repaying affects your credit limit. ... (See Limit)

ACH network unveils same-day bill pay -- Running late on a bill? Same Day ACH enables credit card users to make same-day payments to issuers through their online banking systems ... (See Same day)

4 warning signs your college student is racking up card debt -- If your child is already in debt, or uncomfortable talking about finances, that's a yellow flag ... (See Warning signs)

How to get double cash back at Costco -- How to get double cash back at Costco with executive membership and the Costco Citi Anywhere Visa. ... (See Costco)

9 confusing credit card terms explained -- The lexicon of credit card terms can be confounding. Here's some help ... (See Terms)

Can you run a card on file for payment without approval? -- A repeat customer gives business a card number that doesn't work, but has a card on file that does. ... (See Card)

Card account keeps getting hacked. Close it? -- Canceling a card can impact credit score, but it may be necessary ... (See Hacked)

Paid a charged-off debt; now what? -- It’s not enough to just pay a charge-off and forget about it. There are some cases in which the information about the paid charge-off doesn’t get to the credit reporting agencies. ... (See Debt)

85-year-old mom has $25,000 in card debt -- Her adult children's behavior is keeping their mom on the debt hook ... (See Mom)

How to ask the kids to help out in a financial crisis -- When finances are suddenly stretched, is it wrong to solicit help from your children? ... (See Kids)

Credit bureau policies vary when freezing a child's credit -- It is often difficult to place a credit freeze on a child when no ID theft has been committed ... (See Freeze)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.22 percent -- September 21, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained near record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

When a 'friend' racks up $11,000 on your card -- Your options? Take her to civil court, pay the debt or stop paying and risk being sued yourself ... (See Options)

Protect yourself from banks 'cross-selling' fake accounts -- Checking up on your bank requires more than reviewing account statements and standard credit reports ... (See Accounts)

APRs to stand pat as Fed puts off rate increase -- Credit card users were spared higher APRs for now, but should brace for an increase before year end ... (See Federal Reserve)

Retailers cash in on booming mobile card reader adoption -- Mobile card readers are a game-changer for former cash-only merchants ... (See Mobile card readers)

You splurged for the Chase Sapphire Reserve card. Now what? -- Use the card's points and perks before that $450 annual fee kicks in again. ... (See Reserve)

How your business can avoid charge-backs, account problems -- Chargebacks can cause problems for business owners when it comes to their accounts. There are ways to improve customer service and cut down on charge-backs ... (See Charge-backs)

Study: Rising interest rates will impact 92 million in US -- A study by credit bureau TransUnion finds that 92 million U.S. consumers will face higher monthly payments when interest rates rise, and 9 million will struggle ... (See Rates)

Tips for buying airline tickets with a debit card -- Buying an airline ticket with a debit card involves its own restrictions and requirements ... (See Debit)

Dispute card accounts opened fraudulently by ex-spouse -- You have to take the proper steps to get the issuers to acknowledge the accounts aren't yours ... (See Fraud)

9 free or cheap apps to help you get out of debt -- Becoming debt free starts with totaling all you owe on your credit cards and loans ... (See Apps)

Business charged you via card number on file? Dispute it -- Just because they sold you something once, they can't run your card number on file again without your permission ... (See Dispute)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds tight at 15.22 percent -- Sept. 14, 2016: The average APR on new card offers didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Supercharge rewards with a business card -- By playing your cards rights, a business card can rack up rewards fast ... (See Rewards)

How to fix credit after dad opens card in son's name -- Son rejects dad's card offer, but finds out dad opened one anyway ... (See Credit)

Infographic: Online banking still tops, but mobile surges -- Nearly 60 percent of Americans used mobile banking at least once per month ... (See Online banking)

Making the most of flexible travel rewards programs -- Several programs allow transfers to airlines and hotels, and there may be more possibilities than you realize ... (See Rewards)

Demystifying 5 common credit misconceptions -- Don't get tripped up by misleading or confusing credit terminology ... (See Terms)

An old card, left open after divorce, can mean new debt -- Debt collectors don't care what your divorce decree says ... (See Old card)

Video: Exclusive credit card rewards experiences -- We'll show you how to get up close and personal with the players of your favorite sports team before a game by using credit card reward points ... (See Experience)

To escape from crummy cards, you need a plan -- Get basic good credit behavior down pat; worry about the nuances later ... (See Crummy)

Wells Fargo's huge fine: inside the numbers -- Wells Fargo will pay $185 million for secretly opening unauthorized accounts for its customers, and that's not the only big number connected to the case ... (See Wells Fargo)

Premarital debt weighs on new marriage -- Bringing delinquent debt into a new union can strain joint finances ... (See Debt)

Video: Ways to save money on a Disney vacation -- Here are some realistic ways to save money at the happiest place on Earth ... (See Disney )

If credit score disappears, here's how to get it back -- Inactivity can cause your credit score to vanish ... (See Disappear)

Fed: July card balances rise 3.4 percent -- Consumer card debt continues its steady climb upward ... (See Debt)

Poll: Americans don't read or understand credit card agreements -- Asked to describe the agreements in one word, we use bad ones ... (See Poll)

Study: Credit card agreements unreadable to most Americans -- Despite a U.S. campaign for simplicity, contracts remain indecipherable, written at a grade level beyond the Average American's understanding ... (See Unreadable)

Compare readable, unreadable credit card agreement text -- We dare you to understand the text written at the 28th grade level ... (See Unreadable text)

Readability battle: card agreements versus Harry Potter -- See how card agreements stack up in readability against familiar documents, from novels to nursery rhymes to the U.S. Constitution ... (See Card agreements versus Harry Potter)

Video: Unreadable card agreements -- Credit card agreements are said to be written on an 11th grade reading level. We came to a university campus with an excerpt from a credit card agreement to see if college students can make sense of what they are reading ... (See Card agreement video)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.22 percent -- September 7, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

10 business card mistakes that can tank your credit -- A low score can make it difficult to secure loans, retain suppliers and attract customers ... (See Mistakes)

Will incorrect income on car application jeopardize loan? -- The bigger problem lies in taking on a car payment you can't afford ... (See Loan)

Talking about your debt can help you escape it -- Secrecy and shame can hurt efforts to become debt-free ... (See Debt)

Save money on gas, at Costco and elsewhere -- Using the new Citi Costco card can make sense at the pump, but there are other ways to save on gas ... (See Save)

Inform customer before your business runs card number on file -- If your business is left with an balance and has a card on file for an unresponsive customer, it is probably OK to run the card - but document your efforts to reach them ... (See On file)

Make sure loan consolidation improves your credit -- Consolidating your credit card debt into a single loan can help your credit or hurt it. It depends on your actions ... (See Debt)

Living together doesn't create common-law marriage or debt liability -- Keeping accounts separate can protect funds in case partner is sued for repayment ... (See Debt)

9 credit lessons for college students -- These tips will help students use cards wisely to build their credit in school and beyond ... (See Students)

6 favors you can ask your card issuer -- Looking for a better deal? It never hurts to ask, and good preparation increases the odds you'll hear a "yes" ... (See Favors)

Infographic: Credit card use among the college set -- Two-thirds of college students have a credit card, and most are using their cards regularly, according to data from Equifax ... (See College cards)

Removing yourself as an authorized user -- Ending the 'piggyback' ride from a person with great credit can impact score ... (See Impact)

Rate survey: Average card APR rises to 15.22 percent -- Aug. 31, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers rose to a record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Creating a credit history for kids under 10 is too early -- Wait until kids hit their teens to add them as authorized users to your card ... (See Kids)

Don’t fall victim to these 7 credit card timing mistakes -- Paying a bill late, failing to pay off an account and other timing errors can cost you big in terms of credit damage ... (See Timing)

Which cards maximize rewards at grocery stores? -- Having the right rewards card can beat coupon clipping ... (See Grocery)

7 ways to track your reward cards like a pro -- Experts give advice on how to juggle various cards and their rewards points programs ... (See Track)

Shady business partner opens up credit in your name -- Straighten out the credit mess, then get a new partner ... (See Business)

Who must pay card debt of deceased husband? -- The state where you live determines who has to pay. ... (See Widow)

Tips, tools for setting up a side gig to get out of debt -- A part-time job on the side can help increase income to pay off debt ... (See Gig)

Infographic: Most Americans OK with going cashless -- Millennials are cool with leaving the house sans bills or coins, a Gallup Poll says ... (See Cashless)

Be wary of whose card you piggyback on -- If the credit bureau deems the account illegitimate, you'll be out of luck ... (See Piggyback)

First National Bank of Omaha refunds $27.75 million for add-ons -- Misleading marketing of credit card add-on products that did not deliver what they promised brings regulatory action ... (See Refund)

Half of college students aren’t checking their credit reports -- Many Americans 18-24 are wielding credit cards responsibly, but there’s a need for more credit education, a new Equifax study and money experts say. ... (more)

How becoming a widow affects credit -- Becoming suddenly single won't hurt credit if you have your own ... (See Widow)

New credit card has so-so terms? You have choices -- If the rate is too high or the credit limit too low, you have more options than just sitting and fuming ... (See Meh)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19 percent -- Balance transfer and 0 percent purchase offers become less generous ... (See Rates)

Security concerns keep consumers away from mobile payments -- Older consumers site security concerns, privacy and lack of necessity as reason they don't use mobile payments ... (See Mobile payment concerns)

Deceased father's accounts dragging down son's scores -- Knowing exactly how dad's accounts got on son's credit is first step ... (See Scores)

Survey: Card acceptance for tuition rises, but so do fees -- U.S. colleges and universities are more card-friendly, but fees for charging tuition are rising, according to a new CreditCards.com survey. ... (See Survey)

2016 Credit Card Tuition Payment Survey data -- Find out if the college you're attending will let you pay tuition with a credit card -- and at what cost ... (See Tuition card payment data)

How cohabitating couples can protect themselves financially -- Taking these three steps before moving in could help avoid a money mess down the road. ... (See Finances)

To manage money during travel, carry a mix of cards, cash -- A balanced approach gives you the most payment options ... (See Travel)

Businesses must beware unauthorized card use -- Fraud liability, loss of ability to accept cards may follow if you don't follow merchant rules ... (See Unauthorized)

Compare elite credit cards -- Table summarizes the high-cost, high-reward cards ... (See Compare elite rewards)

Card issuers can reduce your credit limit -- Banks monitor credit reports, and make adjustments if it sees signs of risk ... (See Limit)

Deceased mom's debts take priority over inheritance -- After debts are paid, then what's left over can be disbursed among any heirs ... (See Heirs)

How preapproved offers affect credit -- You don't have a lot to worry about, but there are exceptions ... (See Preapprove)

Satisfaction rises for most cardholders -- Discover comes out on top in J.D. Power's annual satisfaction survey ... (See Satisfaction)

Recession foreclosures disappearing from credit reports -- With their credit reports cleansed, "boomerang buyers" are returning to a still-depressed housing market ... (See Home)

Survey: Average card APR inches up to 15.19 percent -- After sitting at 15.18% for nine weeks, a move by AmEx ratchets national average up ... (See Rates)

We'll reach chip card saturation in 2020 -- Mercator Advisory Group forecasts that EMV chip card penetration will hit 95 percent by 2017, and 100 percent three years later ... (See Chip card saturation)

Video: How payment history affects your credit score -- Financial mistakes can haunt you and your FICO score ... (See Payment history)

Is secured card best for rebuilding credit post-bankruptcy? -- If your score is high enough, you may qualify for a regular, unsecured card ... (See Credit)

As hotel data breaches mount, be alert for card fraud -- Regularly change passwords, watch accounts for suspicious activity ... (See Hotel)

Not all travel qualifies for rewards bonus points -- Check your card's terms to see how it defines "travel" ... (See Travel points)

Keep medical debt from being reported to credit bureaus -- Prevent the credit score damage before it happens ... (See Lucky break)

When your card's big data collection goes from cool to creepy -- Some actions from credit card companies might be convenient for some customers and unnerving for others ... (See Data)

Pay medical bill before debt goes into collections -- Complex medical billing makes it common for debts to slip past due ... (See Medical debt)

5 dream vacations funded with rewards -- Find out how you can turn that wish-list vacation into reality ... (See Rewards)

Teen falsifies birth date, gets card, charges $500 -- Her mom will pay off debt, but asks if her teen will come under fire from the issuer ... (See Teens)

4 wrong money messages for kids (and 4 right ones) -- Parents unknowingly teach their kids unhealthy money habits, but they're fixable ... (See Kids)

How delinquent child support affects credit scores -- States vary in how they report it, so impact varies, too ... (See Scores)

Survey: Average card APR holds tight at 15.18 percent for ninth week -- August 10, 2016: The average APR on new credit card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Video: Building credit as a new US resident -- Here are five tips for building credit from scratch ... (See Build)

Card options expand when bankruptcy falls off credit report -- At last, 10 years have passed since bankruptcy. Which card should you try for? We'll help you come up with a plan ... (See Post-bankruptcy)

Credit card ownership lags for those with low scores -- Credit card ownership is rebounding, but remains far behind levels seen before the recession, and consumers with bad credit are the ones doing without plastic ... (See Ownership)

Purging seldom-used reward cards -- If you have cards you rarely use, consider canceling them for peace of mind ... (See Gas rewards)

Early card fraud rains new payouts for victims -- Millions recovered from offshore accounts held by an owner of online porn sites ... (See Ken Taves)

Best balance transfer credit cards: Summer 2016 -- Our panel of judges names the Citi Simplicity Card as the top balance transfer card for summer 2016 ... (See The top balance transfer card for summer 2016)

Don't try to fix and flip houses with 0-percent cards -- Risky investments require cash reserves, not plastic ... (See Flipping)

Rewards bubble hasn't popped ... yet -- Points, miles and cash back gush at unprecedented levels, but what goes up must come down ... (See Bubble)

Fed: Revolving debt surges in June -- Balances on credit cards grew at a 9.7 percent annual rate in June, the Federal Reserve's consumer credit report said ... (See Consumer credit)

Back-to-school credit guide 2016 -- CreditCards.com resources for shopping, learning about credit and managing debt during the back to school season. ... (See Guide)

Stop soon-to-be ex from sticking you with joint debt -- Take steps now to protect your finances before you get in front of a judge ... (See Divorce)

New card accounts continue to rise sharply -- Subprime cards are up 160 percent in the past five years ... (See New card accounts)

Use rewards to boost back-to-school savings -- Stretch your back-to-school shopping budget with credit card rewards ... (See Back to school)

How being denied credit affects your score -- Only the hard inquiry affects the credit score of an applicant when their credit report is pulled ... (See Denied credit)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18% for eighth week -- August 3, 2016: The average APR on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Survey: 1 in 3 young women don’t know current card balances -- Credit card, student loan debt overwhelming millennials on tight budgets ... (See Millennials)

Safeguard accounts from card-stealing family member -- Keep cards safe and don't store details online to prevent fraudulent charges from happening ... (See Fraud)

5 reasons why you can’t seem to climb out of debt -- Running up credit cards may provide an emotional payoff for some ... (See Debt)

Maximize points by shifting spending to a rewards card -- Some types of purchases are hard to put on a card ... (See Shift spend)

Millennials, now house-hungry, struggle to build credit -- Late to homebuying but eager, millennials look for quick, creative credit score cures ... (See Homebuying)

Mailing goods to a customer? Require a signature -- For small businesses that send products by mail, a signed record will show it was delivered and avoid chargeback disputes ... (See Signature)

When medical bills lead to deep debt, tough choices follow -- Cut your costs, get credit counseling and accept that bankruptcy may be in your future ... (See Medical debt)

Hiring a debt collector to enforce loan to friend, family -- When friends and family borrow and fail to repay, it may be time to bring in a professional debt collector ... (See Collect)

Best way to allocate lump sum across multiple card debts -- You can pay high-interest debt first or knock off an entire balance for motivation ... (See Debt)

Hard inquiry warning not required -- The impact of that inquiry can range from slightly harmful to positive ... (See Inquiry)

CFPB proposes new limits on debt collectors -- You'd have to be told if debt's too old to legally collect ... (See Debt collectors)

2016 Credit Card Fee Survey: Surprise! Fees drop -- As they seek new customers, some card issuers have done the remarkable: They cut fees, according to a new CreditCards.com survey. ... (See Fees)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains stuck at 15.18 percent -- July 27, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate survey)

It's now harder to pay health insurance premiums via credit card -- Citing fees, Humana and some Blue Shield units have dropped the pay-by-credit-card option ... (See Payments)

Understanding how a card's billing cycle works -- Depending on when issuers report to the bureaus will impact credit scores ... (See Billing)

APRs hold steady as Fed opts against rate increase -- The Federal Reserve held off on lifting interest rates, giving credit card holders a temporary reprieve from higher APRs ... (See Fed)

CFPB lists our biggest complaints with credit cards -- Card complaints were up 9 percent in the second quarter as consumers groused about fees, costs, rewards and other issues ... (See CFPB)

Merchants hit by chargebacks look to hire help -- Frequent chargebacks cost time and money -- and for some merchants, it can make sense to hire professional help. ... (See Chargeback)

How to redeem your card's cash back reward -- Increasingly, it's your choice of check, prepaid card or statement credit ... (See Cash)

Employers running credit checks on job applicants must tread carefully -- The screening tool is increasingly seen as unfair by state legislatures, though they may make sense in some cases ... (See Credit checks)

Infographic: The face of senior card debt -- Medical bills take up most of the debt of the seinor citizen community, while credit card debt is a close second ... (See Senior debt)

Struggling homeowner reliant on credit looks at raiding 401(k) -- With credit maxed out, car shot, raiding the 401(k) is tempting, but don't do it ... (See Help)

Credit card bill autopayments: tips for getting it right -- Setting up autopayments can prevent slip-ups that can ruin your credit score ... (See Autopay)

Warn the ex's girlfriend about his IRS tax debt -- If you and your ex owe the IRS, the new girlfriend deserves to know ... (See Taxes)

Positive card habits up, negative ones down -- Americans pay their credit card bills in full more often, and avoid costly behavior, a six-year survey series finds ... (See Card behavior)

5 credit scoring head-scratchers -- Most of the times, scoring rules make sense. Then there are these ... (See Rules)

LA, Minneapolis best cities for money management skills -- Consumers in Los Angeles and Minneapolis-St. Paul excel at managing their finances, based on credit scores adjusted for income and other factors ... (See Cities)

Rate survey: Average card APR doesn’t budge -- July 20, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Video: Credit pitfalls for stay-at-home parents -- Stay-at-home parents can tank their credit by making these common mistakes ... (See Parents)

How unwanted card, hard inquiry impact credit scores -- The inquiry will ding your score, but the new credit line may help ... (See Card)

When paying off debt becomes an addiction -- Obsessing over debt repayment can transition into unhealthy behavior ... (See Debt)

NY Fed: Credit card applications up, rejections down -- Consumers applied for credit cards at a record rate in a June survey, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York ... (See Applications)

Take steps to pay down debts on shaky business now -- You've racked up personal debt to start a business and its revenues are shy of what you expected? Shift into pay-down mode, even if it means taking a second job ... (See Business debt)

Buying gift cards with a credit card gets harder, for now -- Merchants waiting for certification of new equipment to process EMV chip cards are putting limits on gift card purchases, a favorite of credit card fraudsters ... (See Gift cards)

One day late, one dollar short means late fee -- Paying a bit little, a bit late, will trigger a fee ... (See Late fee)

'Plain vanilla' credit cards: 5 reasons to choose one -- Credit cards with no frills, no rewards, no hassles have become popular; here's why one may be right for you ... (See Vanilla )

How to graduate from debit-only to being a credit card holder -- Don't let fear hold you back from opening a credit card. Used properly, they're a useful tool. ... (See Debit)

Authorized user doesn't like the piggyback ride -- Don't jump off too soon; a close look at the entire credit profile may show it's a net positive ... (See Piggyback)

How to remove a 100-word personal statement from your credit report -- Even if you felt the need to dispute an unpaid bill or explain what led to a foreclosure in the past, there are a number of reasons why you might have a change of heart ... (See Remove)

Rate survey: Average card APR sits tight at 15.18 percent -- July 13, 2016: The average APR on new card offers remained unchanged at 15.18 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Unpaid fees from canceled card can end up in collection -- When a card is canceled, triple-check that no balance remains ... (See Fees)

Video: How to save on a national park vacation -- With rewards credit cards and other budget-saving tips you can have an exciting park adventure for a fraction of the usual cost ... (See Vacation savings)

How do I tell when card debt legally expires? -- The statute of limitations in your state and your card agreement are the starting points, but individual cases can be complex ... (See Debt legally expires)

Why we love that giddy high of a good card splurge -- That rush you feel when you splurge actually has a name: it's called a "buy high." ... (See Splurge)

When spouse dies, who gets the cash-back rewards? -- As an authorized user on your spouse's credit card account, you are usually not entitled to cash-back rewards accrued on the account. But issuers may make an exception ... (See Rewards)

How to get free stays and perks faster with hotel rewards -- Loyalty programs from hotels, co-branded credit cards and third-party booking sites all can help you earn free nights, but work best when you choose a strategy that fits your needs ... (See Hotel rewards)

Business partner's personal debts on card may be grounds for suit -- An authorized user isn't normally liable for card debts. But you may still have legal recourse against a small-business partner who won't pay personal charges they rang up on your card ... (See Business partner)

What happens after a debt is charged off -- When the original lender gives up, collection efforts continue, with important consequences ... (See Debt)

Infographic: Credit card love from older millennials -- Millennials do, too, like credit cards, research shows. In fact, older millennials covet them more than any other age group ... (See Millennials)

Credit paranoia or credit smart? Which precautions are worth it -- How to make sure that the desire to protect your credit information doesn't turn into an obsession ... (See Theft)

Volunteering for jail isn't the answer to debt -- When debt gets deep, don't despair there's help ... (See Jail)

Fed: May card balances rise 3 percent -- Americans continued to reach for credit cards in May, as card balances rose $2.3 billion (3 percent), according to the Fed's latest consumer credit report. ... (See Debt)

Infographic: Card delinquencies hold near record lows -- At 2.47 percent, late payers are half the number they were during the recession ... (See Delinquency)

9 rewards card sign-up bonus mistakes -- Know the minimum spend required, the fees to avoid and more ... (See Sign-up)

Score damage increases if unpaid debt goes to collections -- Your score likely took one blow when a bill went seriously delinquent. You'll take another if it's sold to a collection agency ... (See Into collections)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.18 percent -- July 6, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

A plan now will avoid winter holiday debt -- Summer is the time to start thinking about how to avoid winter holiday debt. Work on budgeting, bargain-hunting and building that savings ... (See Holiday debt)

New card application may renew debt collection -- If you have debt in collections, creditors may come calling once they see you are seeking more credit ... (See Debt)

Replacing lost credit card? Want it fast? Expect to pay -- As banks look for new ways to make money, some have started charging to replace lost credit or debit cards. Want it in a hurry? It'll cost even more ... (See Replace)

‘Loaded’ author Sarah Newcomb: Call them loan cards, not credit cards -- In a new book, the behavioral economist talks about the role credit cards play in the financial tales we tell ourselves ... (See Q&A)

Card issuers impose limits on rewards card churning -- Limits make it tougher to churn through credit cards to milk them for sign-up bonuses while ducking the fees ... (See Churning)

Poor personal credit hurts business card application -- Even with good business credit, your chances of approval for a business credit card are poor until you rebuild your personal credit score ... (See Business)

Dealing with aggressive debt collector tactics -- A real debt collector must start by sending a validation of debt notice ... (See Debt)

Credit use by generation: Who's doing the best job? -- The generation you're from likely plays a big role in how you view and use credit products ... (See Credit)

Aging father's big card debt puts his home at risk -- With equity in his home, he risks creditors slapping a lien on it for repayment, or worse, a forced sale. ... (See Home)

Appeals court rejects $7.25 billion swipe-fee settlement -- An appeals court overturned a 2012 swipe-fee settlement that allowed merchants to surcharge Visa and MasterCard credit card transactions ... (See Surcharge)

Video: Protect your identity in ways chip cards can't -- While EMV chip cards can help prevent some fraud, identity thieves are looking for other ways to find your personal info and you might just be helping them ... (See ID theft)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.18 percent -- June 29, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Lowering credit limit on new card can hurt scores -- The higher the credit line, the better, as long as balances stay low ... (See Scores)

Why your credit card issuer really wants to text you -- MasterCard and Visa will require that all card issuers provide opt-in alert programs for potentially fraudulent transactions ... (See Mobile alerts)

VantageScore turns 10: What it is, why it matters -- VantageScore, launched as a more consumer-friendly alternative to the dominant FICO credit score, has slowly gained acceptance ... (See VantageScore)

Generations differ on spending extra money -- Millennials go for entertainment with discretionary dollars, Generation X pays off debt and boomers sock it into savings, new research says ... (See Spending extra dollars )

Mastering the side hustle to beat down debt -- Millennials struggling with student debt can take on extra work to get out of the red, blogger turned author David Carlson says. It worked for him. ... (See Q&A)

Brexit getaway? Award seats to London are widely available -- The turmoil after the British vote to leave the European Union has made it cheaper for Americans traveling there, though with airline prices still high, it pays to investigate award flights ... (See Fly)

How to choose a P2P payment service -- Here are the features to be aware of when choosing an app for paying friends ... (See P2P)

Will I be held liable for my failing business’s credit card debt? -- Even if your small-business credit card accounts aren't appearing on your personal credit report now, they may if you default ... (See Business debt)

Minimum payments won't cut debt on 16 cards -- If all you can afford is the minimum payments on your debt, you need a game-changer ... (See MInimums)

Debt-fighting expats find success abroad -- A rising number of Americans are moving abroad not to dodge debt, but to deal with it. They trim cost of living and save ... (See Saving abroad)

Personal funds generally safe once debt is uncollectible -- Once the statute of limitations has passed, garnishment fears should be allayed ... (See Debt)

Paper versus online statements: 8 FAQs -- Frequently asked questions about switching from paper to online statements for your credit card account, or maybe switching back ... (See Paper statements FAQs)

If you settle debt, expect a credit score drop -- Debt settlement can help get you out of overwhelming debt, but there will be a catch ... (See Settle)

Poll: Paper bank statements remain popular -- More than half of us still get them; younger consumers more likely to go digital with bank statements, a CreditCards.com national poll finds ... (See Paper statements)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.18 percent -- June 22, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Generation Debit: Parents dish out plastic instead of cash -- More teens and even preteens are opening checking accounts, using debit cards. It can teach money skills, but has risks ... (See Debit)

Canceling new card won’t offset hard inquiry score impact -- Once you apply, the damage is done. But responsible use over time is the cure ... (See Impact)

Video: Curb emotional spending in 4 steps -- "Retail therapy" can work against you by adding stress on your finances. Here are 4 ways to help stop spending as a way to handle your emotions ... (See Emotional spending)

Card offers on planes – are they worth it? -- Credit card applications handed out on planes sometimes come with better rewards sign-up bonuses and other perks, but not always ... (See Rewards)

Low credit score? Mortgages now more expensive -- Recent changes to private mortgage insurance costs hurt low-score, low down payment buyers ... (See PMI)

How to ask members to cover nonprofit's card processing fees -- How you word such a request has less to do with credit card laws than with regulations governing nonprofit fundraising ... (See Fees)

Risk of lien, garnishment during debt settlement -- If debt negotiations get nasty, you could be sued, so watch out for notices from the court ... (See Garnish)

Settling parent's financial affairs after death -- Locating insurance, paying bills a challenge when a parent dies suddenly ... (See Death)

Credit card statistics -- This is the web's largest and best-documented set of credit card statistics, from industry studies, government and university reports, and CreditCards.com's original research ... (See Stats)

How a Canadian can restart credit in the U.S. -- A great score in Canada means little; you need to obtain a U.S. loan from a U.S. lender that reports to U.S. credit bureaus ... (See Canadian)

Credit card fee, rate statistics -- How many of us are paying fees on our credit cards, and what is the average APR on a card with a balance? CreditCards.com has compiled statistics to answer those questions and more ... (See Fees and interest)

Student credit, debit and prepaid card statistics -- Credit cards have gotten harder for college students to get, but debit, prepaid cards and campus cards fill in the payment gaps ... (See Student stats)

Fed dials back rate-hike expectations -- In a reprieve for credit card borrowers, the Federal Reserve decided against a rate increase for the fourth time this year and signaled a slower pace of increases ... (See Rates)

Rate survey: Average card APR inches up to 15.18 percent -- June15, 2016: The average credit card interest rate ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Prepaid travel cards pros and cons -- Prepaid travel cards can offer a safe way to get cash in foreign currency ... (See Travel)

Paying down existing balances trumps need for secured card -- Getting rid of current debt will boost score more than getting a new card ... (See Score)

Credit card race, age, gender statistics -- Race, gender and age all play a role in how much credit we're able to access and whether we're able to use that credit to greatest advantage. CreditCards.com has compiled statistics on demographic trends in the credit world ... (See Demographic stats)

Many prefer debit for everyday buys, credit for the big ones -- For many, debit cards lead credit cards as a primary payment method, a TD Bank survey finds. But for big-ticket items, nearly all groups prefer credit cards ... (See Debit versus credit)

9 signs you have too much debt -- Your debt might be out of control if one of these nine signs hits home ... (See Debt)

Foreign ATMs accept US debit cards, but carry backup -- U.S. debit cards are widely accepted at overseas ATMs, but carry credit cards, too, to be safe ... (See ATMs)

Fed: Credit card banking remains highly profitable -- Big card-issuing banks get triple the earnings, annual Fed profitability report says ... (See Profitable)

Plan to walk away from card debt? Read this first -- For those who think blowing off their credit card debt is better than paying it. Here are the caveats and what experts have to say ... (See Walk away)

Business credit card statistics -- Many entrepreneurs rely on credit cards to keep their small businesses running. Check out these statistics on their charging and payment habits ... (See Business card statistics)

Financing your business without relying on personal credit -- You can fund a startup without a personal guarantee, but it won’t help you build business credit ... (See Business credit)

Which 0-percent card should be paid off first? -- Priority should be given to the card with the closest expiring APR offer ... (See 0-percent)

Infographic: Cards gain ground as payment method -- Fewer Americans are using paper-based payments in 2016, while almost all plastic and electronic forms are on the rise ... (See Payments)

Tough choice: Sell home to pay off debt -- Your home is your castle, but it could also be your ticket out of debt ... (See Sell)

Card issuers need court judgments to seize debt payments -- Behind on card payments? Issuers can't withdraw debt payments straight from your -- or your spouse's -- bank accounts without legal action ... (See Debt)

Video: Credit card payment due dates explained -- There is more to your credit card payment due date than you may realize. Kristin Wong explains three things to keep in mind ... (See Due date)

Who sees credit report 100-word statements -- Not many lenders bother with them; you may want to remove old ones ... (See 100 words)

Average card APR falls to 15.17 percent: CreditCards.com Rate Report -- After remaining at 15.19 percent for seven weeks, the national average annual percentage rate slid to 15.17 percent ... (See Rates )

Set rules when adding child to your card for foreign travel -- As an authorized user, you can keep track of his charges and know he's covered in case of an emergency ... (See Travel)

4 credit lessons women can learn from men -- Sometimes "thinking like a man" can be the right money move ... (See Lessons)

Fed: April card balances rise 2.1 percent -- Americans continued to favor credit cards in April, as card balances rose $1.7 billion (2.1 percent), according to the Fed's latest consumer credit report. ... (See Balances)

6 credit card rules for newlyweds -- Credit discussions are just as important as divvying up household chores ... (See Newlyweds)

Splitting reward points from a small business -- Credit card rewards usually belong to whoever signed up for the account. But small-business partners should discuss whether to split them up or use them for business expenses. ... (See Business rewards)

Plan carefully before opening multiple small-business credit cards -- Multiple business cards may help your credit score and increase your rewards-earning potential, but first consider how you will manage them ... (See Business cards)

Poll: 4 in 10 co-signers lose money -- Helping out a credit-challenged friend or family member by co-signing can damage to credit and relationships ... (See Co-sign)

How card debt liability changes after final parent dies -- Unless the account is co-owned, card debt is paid by the estate, and is among the last debts in line ... (See Death)

6 ways to overcome the shame of debt -- Get beyond the stigma of maxed-out cards and piles of bills and start turning around your financial life, experts say ... (See Debt shame)

Just 10 credit score points shy of a mortgage -- These strategies will help you get the final points needed to qualify for that home loan ... (See 10 points)

CFPB proposes regulations on payday loans, other 'debt traps' -- Consumer bureau's rules aim to make small-dollar loans safer without cutting off emergency credit for subprime borrowers ... (See Payday)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19% -- June 1, 2016: The average credit card interest rate remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Minor's co-signed bank account at risk of parents' garnishment -- Even if a minor earns the money, it's a parental asset , and one that would tempt a debt collector ... (See Garnish)

Video: Chargebacks hit merchants not ready for EMV chip cards -- Small businesses who have not upgraded to EMV chip card readers are facing expensive chargebacks from banks ... (See Chargebacks)

ATMs changing to accept EMV chip cards -- Consumers should expect some ATM changes as the next wave of EMV migration takes place ... (See ATMs)

Hunting for the best cash-back rewards card -- The "best" card for you depends on your preferences and spending habits. But when it comes to cash-back rewards, don't settle for less than a 2 percent payoff ... (See Cash back)

Title loan causing overdrafts? You may have recourse -- Title loans can put you into a vicious circle of debt through automatic withdrawals from your bank account. But if the lender doesn't follow certain rules, you may be able to file a formal complaint ... (See Loan)

Removing your name from a joint account after divorce -- You're still responsible if ex doesn't pay. If you're on good terms, and ex has good credit, a balance transfer would work ... (See Divorce)

100-word credit report statement: 6 ways it can hurt you -- Sometimes too much information can come back to haunt you ... (See Report)

Options for escaping penalty rate APRs -- Six months of on-time payments can force a rate review ... (See Penalty rate)

Infographic: The financially happy now outnumber the unhappy -- For the first time since before the Great Recession, the majority of Americans feel cheerful about their finances ... (See Financially happy)

Why an old debt may vanish from credit report -- If a legitimate debt disappeared from your credit report, don't celebrate yet. It might not be gone long. ... (See Credit report)

Prepaid card fee disclosure chart -- We checked the disclosure of fees for 10 widely available prepaid cards. Here's what we found ... (See Prepaid fee disclosure chart)

Most prepaid cards fail to disclose fees -- We checked 10 prepaid cards' disclosures against a federal model for transparency; 7 fall short ... (See Prepaid)

Rate survey: Average card APR remains at 15.19 percent for a 6th week -- May 25, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APRs)

Fight back against debt by FOMO -- Suffering from the fear of missing out? Focus on your goals and budget to tune out social media pressures to spend ... (See Fighting FOMO)

What types of income qualify on card applications? -- Gross or net? Household income or wages? Breaking down income qualifications when applying for a card ... (See Income)

10 warning signs of ID theft -- Data breach notices and bogus charges on your card are just two red flags. Here’s what to do if you suspect fraud ... (See ID theft)

Options abound for redeeming reward points -- Bank-related reward programs offer a lot of redemption choices. But consider how many points each kind of reward requires ... (See Rewards)

For tip-earning employees, credit card surcharges may beat alternative -- Credit card surcharges are complicated and may irritate customers. While that could hurt the tips of the merchant's employees, it may be better for them than one alternative ... (See Fees)

Overcoming 5 merchant barriers to EMV chip cards -- What to do if your business hasn't become EMV-ready because of costs, certification delays and consumer complaints ... (See EMV )

Selling your home to pay off debt, fund college -- Shedding debt is good, but college costs add up fast and another home won't be cheap ... (See Home)

Consumers’ rights to accurate credit reports get boost -- Consumer advocates buoyed by a Congressional proposal to make the credit reporting system fairer and a Supreme Court decision upholding right to accurate information reporting ... (See Credit reports)

More parents giving their kids credit cards -- The number of children ages 8-14 with access to their parents' credit cards has quadrupled ... (See Kids with credit cards)

Authorized user kept charging on deceased dad's card -- Five years after her father died, daughter wonders who is liable for the balance ... (See Liability)

Good payment habits will raise score after balance transfers -- Multiple balance transfers led to multiple hard inquiries and a score drop, but you should be able to turn it around ... (See Transfer)

Poll: 8 in 10 Americans pay for summer vacation with savings -- Less than half will take a break at all; 13 percent who do pay with rewards, says a scientific survey by CreditCards.com ... (See Vacation poll)

Rate survey: Average card APR holds steady at 15.19 percent -- May 18, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Video: Saving on a spa getaway with credit card points -- If you think going to a spa resort is out of your price range, saving up just the right kind of points can help get you within reach ... (See Video)

Dispute duplicate student loans entries on credit reports -- When a loan is bought and sold multiple times, it can create credit report havoc ... (See Duplicates)

8 ways to pay down debt when on a fixed income -- When retired, disabled or laid off, shouldering big debt on a limited income can become overwhelming ... (See Debt)

Is it time to ditch my airline card for bank rewards or a Costco card? -- How to evaluate the benefits, costs and your preferences to find the right rewards card ... (See Rewards)

Summer spending: Plan, set budget for more fun, less debt -- Lounging by the pool, vacations and summer camp are all part of the beauty of summer. But plan ahead so extra costs don't cause you to rack up credit card debt ... (See Summer)

Authorized user not responsible for deceased company president’s debt -- As the authorized user on a small-business credit card, you are not liable for debts on those cards, even if the primary cardholder dies. But if you own the business, there are special considerations ... (See Debt)

Credit card issuer can't garnish your Social Security check -- Contact the company and ask about a hardship program ... (See Garnish)

Confessions of credit card customer service reps -- Current, former reps reveal what they can, can’t do when you call in ... (See Reps)

'Injured spouse allocation' tax form can shield spouse from debt -- Couple's return is seized for repayment of wife's student loan ... (See Loan)

Some states offer exceptions to credit reporting rules -- Negative items can come off your report sooner in New York, California ... (See Exceptions)

Wal-Mart sues Visa over debit choice -- Retailing giant says it wants to require PIN transactions on debit cards to reduce fraud and transaction costs ... (See PIN vs. signature)

Infographic: Mobile payments quickly rising -- Smartphone payments are gaining traction among consumers -- and quickly ... (See Mobile payments rising)

Survey: Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.19 percent -- May 11, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Elder financial abuse: How families can cope -- Besides harming the senior who's been targeted, elder financial abuse often leaves relatives with psychological and financial stress surrounding what's happened to their loved one ... (See Elder abuse)

Low utilization boosts balance transfer deal approval odds -- Zero percent balance transfer deals are often reserved for those with high credit scores ... (See 0% deals)

Video: Secured credit cards, explained -- If your credit score is low, you can build your credit by using a secured credit card ... (See Score)

What to do when strange charges appear on your bill -- If there is a charge on your bill that you did not authorize, you should contact your issuer immediately ... (See Fraud)

Money quirks: The weird things we do with money -- Some quirks are useful at soothing financial anxiety. Others can cross over into being harmful ... (See Money quirks)

Startup didn't launch, so credit rebuilding needed -- Living on credit cards during startup has risks, but with time you can recover a good credit score ... (See Startup)

Infographic: 2016 sees card debt, delinquency uptick -- Though the number of people who fail to pay debt is not as high as it was in the Great Recession, it has started to increase in 2016 ... (See Delinquency rates)

Don't close accounts after paying card debt -- Using a cash-out refi to pay off card debt? Great. Closing the card accounts after? Not great at all ... (See Close)

Fed: March card balances rise 14.2 percent -- Consumers added $11.1 billion to their credit card balances in March, the Federal Reserve said Friday ... (See Balances)

Best travel rewards credit cards: Spring 2016 -- Our panel of judges names the Chase Sapphire Preferred as the top travel rewards card for spring 2016 ... (See Best travel rewards credit cards: Spring 2016)

Credit building tips you thought were wise, but simply aren’t -- What if all that credit climbing wisdom you learned along the way is wrong — or worse, could actually backfire? ... (See Tips)

Is widow obligated to repay husband's debt consolidation program? -- If she co-signed the contract, then she will be required to repay ... (See Debt)

Save money and your score with a DIY debt management plan -- In certain circumstances, it can make sense to tackle debt problems yourself ... (See DIY)

CFPB proposes arbitration limits -- Consumers would get back their right to a day in court under a rule proposed Thursday by the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. ... (See Arbitration)

9 tips for renting a car with a debit card -- You can almost always rent a car with a debit card, but expect extra hassles ... (See Debit)

Survey: Average card APR remains near record high -- May 4, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR)

Paying for a rental car with debit card: 9 obstacles -- You can almost always rent a car with a debit card, but expect extra hassles ... (See Rental )

Walmart MoneyCard prepaid card does not build credit -- If you're looking to build up your credit, prepaid cards are the wrong path to take ... (See Prepaid)

Shopping beacons with targeted marketing messages expand -- Tracking devices that let you opt in to receive location-relevant information on your smartphone are becoming more widespread ... (See Beacons)

British Airways Avios program both confusing and useful -- Avios can be hard to understand but offer a strong value on some flights ... (See Avios)

If you co-signed, relative's business card debt is now yours -- A family member's refusal to pay a debt that you guaranteed puts you on the hook ... (See Debt)

Using personal credit card for work expenses: 8 tips -- It’s common, but not always fair, for companies to ask employees to pay work expenses upfront and get reimbursed later ... (See Personal )

How to tell if a debt is too old to collect -- Time determines whether a debt can legally be collected, and you have to know the starting and ending dates ... (See Too old)

How to protect your credit when your spouse starts a business -- You can help your entrepreneurial spouse make sure their startup doesn't jeopardize the family's finances ... (See Credit)

Quick fixes for temporary repayment problem -- When life throws a curveball and you can't pay your bills one month, here's what you can do ... (See Bills)

RushCard drops retail sales -- Market pullback comes six months after outage sparked federal investigation, class-action lawsuits ... (See RushCard)

Top 10 credit bureau myths -- Just how the bureaus work and who they work for are often misunderstood ... (See Myths)

Fed holds interest rates steady for now -- The Federal Reserve decided to keep its influential benchmark rate unchanged, while hinting at a rate increase later this year ... (See Fed)

Infographic: Female college students edge males in credit smarts -- Female students do a bit better in handling credit, says a Sallie Mae study ... (See College student credit smarts)

Average card APR remains unchanged at 15.19 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 27, 2016: Average rates on new card offers remained near record highs this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How to bounce back from debt repayment setbacks -- Stumbling along the way to becoming debt-free is common. Here's how to make sure it doesn't derail your whole plan ... (See Debt)

How to build credit when you're not a US resident -- Getting a U.S. address and Individual Taxpayer Identification Number are the first steps ... (See Credit)

4 credit lessons men can learn from women -- New studies reveal women to be smart, savvy spenders, maybe more so than men ... (See Men)

FAQs on new Costco Citi Visa card -- We answer the most-common reader questions prompted by the warehouse club’s credit card switch from American Express to Citi ... (See Costco Citi Visa FAQ)

Video: Restaurants fight card fraud with tableside payments -- A pay-at-the-table approach may help stem fraud that can occur when a waiter disappears with your card. ... (See Fraud)

No permission needed for card updater services -- Merchants don't need your permission to use these services, but if you don't want to renew, you can always cancel your subscription ... (See Update)

Big balance transfers may run into limits -- Zero-percent loans are great, but you might not be able to transfer all your debt to one ... (See Balance)

Account takeover fraud rising -- As credit card numbers fall in value on the black market, thieves are turning to a much more lucrative form of ID theft ... (See Takeover)

Getting a refund tougher if you buy with debit card -- Late or nondelivery refunds not fully guaranteed with debit purchases ... (See Dispute)

Card account isn't closed if annual fee still charged -- Despite not using the card for years, if you are still getting charged a fee, your card company considers the account open ... (See Closed )

Poll: Women lose more sleep over money worries than men -- When it comes to financial matters, women worry more and sleep less than men, according a new CreditCards.com poll. ... (See Poll)

Infographic: How generations view financially 'making it' -- Views across generations of what "making it" financially means to them ... (See Generation finances)

Rate survey: Average card APR jumps to 15.19 percent -- April 20, 2016: The average interest rate on new credit card offers rose to a near record high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Used right, subprime cards can help rebuild credit -- Subprime or secured cards can pave the way to a better credit score ... (See Subprime)

Study: Payday loans trigger overdraft fees -- Online payday borrowers who miss repayment face average $185 in bank overdraft fees, federal study finds ... (See Payday loans)

Infographic: Credit card complaint rates -- Some credit lenders manage to lessen the number of complains lodged against them in 2015, compared to 2014 ... (See Complaints)

4 authors on how better credit can make you happy -- Money can't buy happiness, but some well-known authors say taking steps to improve your credit can ... (See Happiness)

Frequent flier miles may live on after death -- Airlines often allow transfers of frequent flier miles to beneficiaries when a member dies, even if written policies are vague ... (See Transfer miles)

Video: 3 things to know about credit card minimum payments -- Find out what a minimum payment is, how it's calculated and how it affects your debt -- in about a minute. ... (See Payment)

Handling employees' personal purchases on company cards -- It may be legal to charge an administrative fee to employees who put personal expenses on their company card, but there are simpler solutions to consider ... (See Purchases)

After divorce, ex dies with card debt; am I responsible? -- It's unlikely, but check divorce decree, credit reports ... (See Debt)

Don't tap IRA to pay back taxes -- Cashing out IRA may cause you to end up with yet another tax bill ... (See IRS)

Financial disorganization: 6 ways it costs you -- Chronic financial clutter can have steep financial and emotional consequences. ... (See Clutter)

Mobile payments laws have gaps but you can still stay safe -- As the use of mobile payments grows, laws offering fraud protections have not caught up. Here's how to stay safe despite gaps in regulations ... (See Mobile)

Positive info not always reported to all 3 credit bureaus -- Big swings in credit scores can result, and that can hurt if you're borrowing ... (See Scores)

Survey: Average card rate holds steady at 15.16 percent for 10th week -- April 13, 2016: The average credit card interest rate remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How a secured card's security deposit works -- Your deposit acts as your credit line and is refunded once the card is closed and the balance paid off, minus any fees ... (See Secured card)

Credit card companies may be analyzing your voice -- With call-center fraud rising, your voiceprint will authenticate you as a customer ... (See Voice)

How to switch your rewards card -- Whether you need to close your old card when you apply for one with better rewards depends on the card's fees and perks ... (See Rewards card)

Video: Payment biometrics go beyond mobile fingerprint scanners -- The latest wave of biometrics incorporate voice authentication, face recognition and other technologies to keep your payments secure ... (See Biometrics)

Infographic: Spigot held tight on subprime credit -- Credit limits for subprime consumers are down from a year ago ... (See Subprime credit)

Credit Card Help: 9 things you need to know about prepaid cards -- Thinking about picking up a reloadable prepaid card? Here’s what you should know first ... (See Prepaid cards)

Split payments: Using two cards for one transaction -- Retail stores often allow you to use two different cards to pay for purchases. But it's a different story when online shopping ... (See Split )

Handling employee abuse of business credit card -- It is not a crime for authorized users to put personal expenses on a company-issued credit card. But there may be simple ways to recoup the costs and prevent future abuse ... (See Abuse)

Pay off all card debt? Or leave a small balance? -- If you want to keep the card, use it; inactivity can cause it to be closed ... (See Pay off)

Paper or emailed credit card statements: Which are better? -- Electronic billing is convenient, saves trees -- but you might miss a payment ... (See Statements)

Will debt settlement hurt authorized user's credit? -- A quick call to issuer to remove authorized user will protect guest cardholder ... (See Settlement)

Even with no SSN, unpaid debt can ruin your credit -- Your name, address and amount owed will be reported ... (See SSN)

Fed: February card balances bounce back -- Consumers are adding to their credit card balances, as card debt increased 3.7 percent in February, the Federal Reserve said Thursday. ... (See Debt)

Poll: 70 percent of consumers have EMV chip cards -- Chip card issuance surges, according to a new CreditCards.com poll, but retailer acceptance lags ... (See Poll)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain fixed at 15.16 percent for 9th week -- April 6, 2016: The average credit card interest rate held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Salaries of CEOs at nonprofit credit counseling agencies -- As industry shrinks, executives pull in six- and seven-figure paychecks ... (See CEO pay)

While in credit recovery, apply for new card with care -- To maximize your score and get the best new card possible, pay off balance on old card first ... (See Score)

Tax refunds: Urges to save it, spend it clash -- Study shows that most who spend it on needed items or paying down debt feel better rather than those who saved it ... (See Tax refund)

Details emerge on new Citi Costco card switch -- Warehouse giant will accept any Visa starting June 20, 2016 ... (See Costco)

5 things to know before requesting a credit-line increase -- Before you request a credit increase, think about how it will affect your credit score and why you need the added amount ... (See Credit line)

Tips for breaking your merchant services contract -- It helps to know what's in your credit card processing contract before you try to break it ... (See Services)

Credit card rewards and cardholder satisfaction statistics -- Credit card rewards programs hold the key to cardholder happiness, but there's room for improvement with security ... (See Stats)

Settlement options on an old card debt -- A "paid in full" notation on your credit report will be helpful ... (See Settle)

5 ways women can compensate for the gender wage gap -- Good money habits can minimize the effects of an unequal salary ... (See Gap)

What to do about card debt when on a fixed income -- Paying off card debt doesn't solve problem of not having enough to live on ... (See Debt)

What you need to know about credit card, debit card 'holds' -- Gas stations and hotels use credit card 'holds' and 'blocks' that may limit access to your own credit and cash ... (See Holds)

Pay off revolving card debt first over installment loan -- A revolving debt balance, in lenders eyes, increases the chance that the borrower will default ... (See Debts)

Survey: Average card rate remains locked at 15.16 percent for 8th week -- March 30, 2016: For the eighth week in a row, the average credit card interest rate remained stuck at 15.16 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

With high credit score, adding new travel card not a problem -- With responsible use, adding another card to your arsenal has advantages ... (See Reward)

Threat of tax fraud, tax ID theft grows -- The year 2016 has already seen a surge in email tax fraud, the IRS warns, and private tax collectors may add to the confusion ... (See Tax ID theft)

7 things you never budget for (but need to) -- There's always that surprise expense that lands on your credit card ... (See Budget)

Getting the most out of multiple rewards cards -- Which to use? Know your spending habits, and look at costs, benefits ... (See Rewards)

8 embarrassing credit and debit card moments -- Times when cardholders wished the ground underneath them would open up and suck them in ... (See Moments)

Can a state mandate businesses accept cards? -- No law requires a merchant to take credit or debit cards in payment, but businesses that spurn them risk losing customers ... (See Acceptance)

If buying a home soon, handle old debt with care -- Have a strategy: How you deal with creditors can clean up your credit -- or send up red flags to mortgage lenders ... (See Home buy)

The hard and fast rules of hard inquiries -- A group of experts explain exactly how credit bureaus’ take hard inquiries in account when you apply for credit ... (See Hard inquiry)

Co-signed card leaves mom's credit in ruins -- When her daughter couldn't pay the bill, collectors turn to her mom ... (See Co-sign)

New technologies, analytics to battle online fraud -- With EMV chip cards expected to deter in-store fraud, card companies are turning to other ideas to secure online payments, too ... (See Fraud)

Lenders may remember old charge-off forever -- Nothing requires a lender to grant more credit if you still owe a debt, despite it falling off your credit report ... (See Charge-off)

Banks reject more card applications -- Lenders stamped "reject" on more credit card applications in the New York Fed's latest survey, reversing course ... (See Rejection)

Women edging men in the battle of credit smarts -- A new study found that despite the fact that women have more credit cards open then men, they rack up less debt ... (See Gender and credit)

Survey: For 7th week, average card rate remains at 15.16 percent -- March 23, 2016: The average credit card interest rate held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Secured card, patience needed to boost score -- Improving a credit score requires many cycles of consistently paying debt ... (See Score)

Poll: Pay with cash or card for $5 purchase? -- Millennials are most likely to use cards for small purchases, and they love debit cards, our poll reveals ... (See Poll)

6 ways stay-at-home parents ruin their credit -- Taking care of your kids also means taking care of your credit. Avoid these credit mistakes that parents often make ... (See Credit)

Ditch or keep rewards card when annual fee comes due? -- With the sign-up bonus spent and a big fee due, it’s OK to cancel or downgrade a card ... (See Fee)

Millennials most likely to fall prey to scams -- Younger generation comfortable, but not always careful, with technology ... (See Scam)

To qualify for business loan, lower your personal credit use -- A careful balance transfer may help lower credit utilization ... (See Credit use)

Don't rush to pay very old debt in collections -- After many years, it may be uncollectible due to its age ... (See Old debt)

Married, single people differ in views on relationships, money -- Everyone cares about money, but married people tend to see more financial red flags, a new survey finds ... (See Money and relationships)

Car lien shouldn't come as a surprise -- People just can't randomly attach liens to your property without notice ... (See Car lien)

More merchants adding credit card surcharges -- Surcharges for paying with cards appear to be on the rise ... (See Surcharges)

Infographic: Millennial money perspectives -- Millennials want to avoid debt and they attribute debt with credit cards according to a new study ... (See Graphic: millennials)

5 times it makes sense to call your card's customer service -- If you’re confused about terms or have problems, just make the call ... (See Phone )

Wrong address in credit report worrisome, but won't hurt score -- Bureaus use formula to decide which address is current ... (See Address)

Cardholders spared APR increase for now -- The Federal Reserve's rate setting committee voted to keep its benchmark rate at the level set in December and lowered expectation for the pace of future increases ... (See Fed)

Average card rates remain at 15.16 percent for 6th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- The average credit card interest rate remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

5 ways an ex can ruin your credit during breakup, divorce -- Heartbreak is compounded by financial hurt if there's revenge spending or a vacation with a lover on a shared credit card ... (See Divorce)

Wait for bankruptcy discharge before applying for credit -- Only in a few circumstances will new credit be allowed during bankruptcy proceedings ... (See Discharge)

'Buy buttons' everywhere can make debt too easy -- Easier ways to pay can end up hurting consumers ... (See Debt)

Help! I need points fast for a summer trip! -- Earning points in a hurry is possible but requires some planning and spending ... (See Miles)

Improperly closed business can cause tax collection headaches -- Tax collectors may come after a small business that is sold but not officially closed. But there are ways to fight back ... (See Tax collectors)

Gen Xers: 4 steps for tackling your debt -- Americans born between the mid-1960s and early 1980s have more debt but less wealth than parents did at the same age. Here's what to do if you're one of them ... (See Gen X)

What to do when kids charge $2,500 to your card for iTunes -- When kids use a card to rack up charges without your knowledge, you should dispute the bill ... (See iTunes)

Activation sticker shock: New card may arrive already 'live' -- If you open a credit account, odds are your new card will need to be activated upon arrival. However, issuing bank practices vary. ... (See Activation)

Infographic: Average card balances by age 2003-2015 -- Seniors have more credit card debt, other age groups less ... (See Card debt by age)

High installment loan utilization hurts your credit score -- Owing a lot on installment loans isn't as damaging as maxing out a card, but it still suppresses your credit score ... (See Installment)

Debt collectors prey on soldiers and veterans -- Military personnel move regularly, earn steady paychecks and have to protect their security clearances. That makes them more vulnerable to illegal debt collection practices ... (See Military)

Rate survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15.16% -- March 9, 2016: The average credit card interest rate didn’t budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Getting, building credit requires an income -- Issuers want to see that you have the ability to repay what you borrow ... (See New to credit)

Poll: Most cardholders who ask get late fees waived, rates reduced -- Cardholders who ask, receive. Yet only a small number are making those requests, says a CreditCards.com poll of 981 cardholders ... (See Poll)

Creating a financial backup plan for singles -- If a crisis keeps you from paying your bills, a financial backup plan can keep creditors at bay ... (See Single)

Options dwindle for paying mortgage, car loan on credit -- It's possible, but requires 'manufactured spending' techniques that are both risky and complex ... (See Points)

Fed: Card balances fall first time in 10 months -- Credit card debt decreased 1.3 percent in January, the Federal Reserve said Monday, breaking a 10-month streak of expanding card balances. ... (See Fed)

Paying deceased's bill doesn't imply liability for authorized user -- Authorized users are not responsible for debt incurred on a credit card account, even if they make payments after the primary cardholder dies ... (See Liability)

You may need good credit to get old -- Many seniors stop worrying about their credit scores once they've paid off their homes and cars. That's a mistake: Assisted living facilities and nursing homes often check credit ... (See Seniors)

5 strategies for single parents to tackle credit card debt -- With time short and only one income to stretch, single parents face unique challenges in digging out of debt ... (See Single)

How an unpaid debt affects selling your property -- An unpaid debt isn't a property lien, and shouldn't hamper home sale ... (See Liens)

How you type, move your mouse may help catch fraudsters -- Some banks and e-commerce sites are monitoring your unique typing and mouse movements to verify your identity and spot fraud ... (See Security)

Promotional inquiries' impact on your credit score -- They crop up on your credit report when a lender has a 'prescreened' offer for you, but don't directly impact your score ... (See Inquiries)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain at 15.16% for fourth week -- March 2, 2016: The average credit card interest rate stayed put Wednesday at 15.16 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

9 things to know about secured cards -- They start with a security deposit, and, when done right, end with you getting improved credit ... (See Secured card)

Charging after bankruptcy filing can backfire -- Racking up card chages during a time of repayment can lead to trouble ... (See Chapter 13)

Financial management tips for after a loved one dies -- When a loved one dies, things like paying the bills can fall to the wayside ... (See Tips)

Consider award availability before selecting travel card -- If you know where you want to travel with miles, see which airlines offer the most award seats before applying for a travel card ... (See Miles)

Video: Couples score free honeymoons using rewards points -- Here's how two couples paid for their honeymoon with rewards points earned on wedding expenses ... (See Points)

Yes, merchants can get new card info on recurring charges -- Updater services allow merchants to know when your credit card information changes, and to alter their records accordingly. If you don't want to continue the subscription, you'll need to cancel it directly ... (See Updater)

If health problems strike, ask for hardship rate reduction on debt -- Avoid a settlement if you can; its credit score impact lingers ... (See Health)

Authorized user not covered by service member's APR protections -- The SCRA won't help lower card APR for an active-duty authorized user ... (See Military)

New lenders shun FICO, create their own scores -- Alternative lenders are turning to homegrown scoring algorithms to evaluate 'thin-credit' customers ... (See Score)

Infographic: The life cycle of a credit card -- A Boston Federal Reserve study shows how credit card debts and credit limits rise and then fall over the course of the average consumer's lifetime ... (See Life cycle of a credit card)

Video: Digital fingerprints can be hacked, too -- No system is foolproof, but fingerprint hacking is an unlikely target for identity thieves ... (See Video)

Credit utilization rules for managing your credit score -- General credit utilization rules: Closing a card will never help your score, while keeping a $0 balance will never hurt it ... (See Utilization)

Rate survey: Average card rate holds steady at 15.16 percent -- Feb. 16, 2016: The average credit card interest rate stayed at 15.16 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How and when you can sue a debt collector -- Even if you owe the debt, you may be on the right side of the law ... (See Collection)

Best card to build credit post-bankruptcy -- A secured card is often your best bet after bankruptcy discharge ... (See Secured card)

Citi to refund $5 million to cardholders for illegal collections -- About 2,100 Citi cardholders will get $5 million back for inflated interest payments on debts sold to collectors, under a U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau crackdown ... (See Refund)

Q&A with Patrice Washington: 'Getting real' about money -- When managing money and building wealth, progress starts with believing you can tackle anything life throws at you, according to author Patrice Washington. ... (See Money)

Should you pay for merchandise with reward points? -- Card companies are offering more options than ever for redeeming points, but pay attention to the value ... (See Redeem)

One credit card? Or many? How to decide -- Having one is easier and removes temptation, using many gives rewards ... (See Cards)

Debt consolidation may not cure cash flow problems for business -- A debt consolidation loan may lower overall small-business credit card payments, but you also need to fix cash flow problems ... (See Debt)

Credit gardening: Sow the seeds for a great score -- Fixing bad credit will take time. But following a "credit gardening" plan can make the journey simpler ... (See Gardening)

Don't fall for collector's threats on really old debt -- If the debt is past the statute of limitations, it's too old to collect ... (See Debt)

Allocating card payments on a limited budget -- Use free tools to plan your debt attack, don't close the account after you succeed ... (See Allocating payments)

Survey: Millions stay loyal to a single card forever -- Millions favor one credit card for a decade, and some never switch, passing up potential rewards, according to a new CreditCards.com survey ... (See Favorite)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains at 15.16 percent -- Feb. 17, 2016: The national average annual percentage rate remained near a record high Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Oil-patch states see rise in loan delinquencies -- Subprime lending continues to rise, says TransUnion data ... (See Delinquencies)

Do you list gross or net income on card applications? -- Issuers want to see your gross income, among other items ... (See Income)

Video: Chapter 7 vs. Chapter 13 bankruptcy -- If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, knowing the difference between Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 is essential. ... (See Video)

Financial literacy begins moving into the workplace -- Many Americans lack the knowledge to properly manage their money. Employee education programs are working to change that ... (See Workplace)

Downgrading a rewards card? You may be eligible for sign-up bonus -- If one card becomes too expensive, consider applying for less costly versions -- and you might even score a sign-up bonus. But be aware of credit implications ... (See Rewards)

How your business can get customers to pay upfront -- You'll need to overcome resistance to advance payment by offering greater value ... (See Upfront payment)

Before you charge, have a plan to pay off your debt -- Yes, you can buy now, pay later. But know the consequences ... (See Repayment)

When good credit marries bad, it takes work -- You don't want your betrothed's bad credit history to bring down yours. Take these steps to protect your credit and help your spouse improve theirs ... (See Wedding risks)

Spousal identity theft is fraud, so fight it -- To avoid liability for the debt, you'll need to report the fraud ... (See Spousal ID theft)

6 money clues your date is a financial disaster -- Assessing a date's financial attitudes early on can save you future heartache ... (See Clues)

'Nuisance' debt in collections under $100 may not hurt score -- You'll face late fees, but newer scoring models ignore small debts ... (See Missed payment)

Rate survey: Average card rate slips to 15.16 percent -- Feb. 10, 2016: Average rates on new card offers dipped Wednesday after rising the previous week to a four-year high, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

7 ways you are your own worst enemy, financially -- You can keep harming your financial health, or turn it around ... (See Enemy)

Steps to build credit as a permanent resident -- A secured card is an ideal credit-building tool for those new to the U.S. ... (See Permanent resident)

EMV chip card rollout in US to peak in 2016 -- While the number of EMV chip cards shipped in the U.S. surged in 2015, that flow hasn't turned to a trickle. Far from it ... (See Chip card rollout)

Tax refund: Using it to pay off credit card debt -- Five questions to help you decide where to apply that refund ... (See Tax refund)

Best reward card for cable, cellphone spending? -- Credit cards offer reward bonuses for many spending categories, including unsexy expenses such as utilities ... (See Points)

What happens if you don't sign a credit card payment slip -- You might get away with it, but don't plan on eating at that restaurant again ... (See Bill)

Deciding whether to settle a credit card debt -- Do you have a lump sum, and are you ready for a credit score hit? ... (See Settle)

How top money experts fund their costly passions -- Even financial professionals can be lured into overspending ... (See Passions)

Lost job? Budget, don't stop card payments -- Prepare a bare-bones budget and cut all nonessential spending before you stop paying on cards ... (See Job loss)

Infographic: The demise of over-limit fees -- Credit card customers unanimously opt out of once-common fee ... (See Over-limit fee)

Fed: Card balances up for 10th straight month -- Credit card balances rose 7.5 percent in December, marking the 10th consecutive month of expanding credit card balances, the Federal Reserve said Friday. ... (See Consumer credit)

Primary account holders are responsible for card debt -- If you're told you're not the primary account holder, you can pay bills, but not make changes ... (See Primary)

Don't apply for multiple balance transfer cards -- Multiple hard credit inquiries will ding your credit score ... (See Hard inquiries)

Rate survey: Average card rate jumps to 15.18% -- Feb. 3, 2016: Average rates on new credit card offers rose to a four-year high this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Poll: 13 million Americans commit financial infidelity -- In a CreditCards.com survey, 5 percent of respondents in a committed relationship admit to keeping a secret bank account or credit card ... (See Financial infidelity)

How JetBlue's card switch to Barclaycard will work -- American Express cards will stop working in March 2016, but TrueBlue points remain ... (See JetBlue)

Getting a new cellphone? Expect a credit check -- If you're signing up for a traditional cellphone contract, your credit will probably be checked. But if your credit isn't great, you have more options than before ... (See Credit check)

How to graduate from parents' credit, cut 'authorized user' cord -- Ready for your own card? Don't ditch that guest card too quickly. ... (See Authorized user)

Long after business is sold, old card debt arises -- A small business owner who handed over a credit card account when he sold his business is being hassled by collectors for debt he didn't ring up ... (See Old debt)

Don't close maxed-out card after you pay off debt -- When the card was maxed out, it was hurting your score; now it's helping ... (See Maxed-out)

For tax purposes, card statements aren't detailed receipts -- Don't rely on your card statement if you want a precise record of spending; keep that original paper receipt ... (See Receipts)

Video: FICO's 5 credit score factors -- FICO is the king of credit scores, used in the most lending decisions. So what factors matter most in its scoring formula? ... (See FICO)

FTC adds tools for ID theft victims -- Amid an epidemic of identity theft, the Federal Trade Commission launched a website designed to shorten the lengthy recovery process ... (See ID theft)

7 ways to boost your partner's credit score -- An overhaul of your loved one's low credit score could save your finances and your relationship ... (See Partner's score)

Playing hardball in a debt dispute has credit consequences -- If you feel wronged by a creditor, you can fight, but if you withhold payment your credit score will plummet ... (See Debt hardball)

Fed pauses interest rate rise -- After raising its benchmark rate in December, the Federal Reserve decided to refrain from another increase, for now ... (See Fed holds steady)

Rate survey: Average card rate rises to 15.13% -- Jan. 27, 2016: Average rates on new card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Personal loans surge into mainstream -- Rise of online lenders and a lack of home equity help fuel the growth of this once-small niche of unsecured loans ... (See Personal loans grow )

Use caution when adding a friend as an authorized user -- No matter what your repayment arrangement is, you are ultimately responsible for any debt ... (See Authorized user)

Video: Medical identity theft victim speaks out -- After a woman's identity was stolen, it put her at risk for losing custody of her 4 children ... (more)

How to fight medical identity theft -- When a thief steals your medical ID, it puts your health at risk as well as your credit. Here's what to do ... (more)

Infographic: Life is financially fragile for millennials -- Young adults tend to carry credit card balances, fret about repaying student loans and don't have an emergency fund ... (See Financial literacy and millennials)

Examine partners to earn more United miles -- If you’re interested in reward flights on United, consider cards connected to airline and bank-program partners ... (See Rewards travel)

Using an EIN to apply for a card, build business credit -- A small business can start building credit with a home improvement store credit card, but be sure you're doing it for the right reasons ... (See EIN )

Survey: 5 in 6 Americans admit to impulse buys -- More than half of consumers said they've spent $100 or more on an impulse buy ... (See Impulse buys)

Get through unemployment without borrowing -- There are more options for squeezing money out of your budget while job hunting. Don't be tempted to take out a loan ... (See Unemployment and debt)

Card owner's dementia, death make it hard to prove theft -- The neighbor of a man with dementia went to town with his card. After his death, it's hard to distinguish theft from generosity ... (See Dementia, death and card theft)

Confusion high over credit card late fees -- Despite new protections, 1 in 5 consumers gets tripped up by a late fee. We explain the fine print you need to avoid them ... (See Late fee confusion)

Automated credit score advice may not fit -- Free online score-improving tips can conflict, depending on which credit-scoring formula is used ... (more)

Rate survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15.12% -- Jan. 20, 2016: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Gas station skimmer theft rising -- Smaller devices, greater security elsewhere make fuel pumps a target ... (See Skimmers)

Got holiday debt? Compare balance transfer, personal loan -- If you overindulged in debt over the holidays, compare a personal loan and credit card balance transfer - either can lighten up your personal balance sheet ... (See Balance transfer versus personal loan)

Stop debt collector's harassing phone calls -- There are laws to protect people from debt collection harassment and abuse ... (See Debt collection)

Why do people pay high annual fees on credit cards? -- Paying hundreds of dollars a year for a credit card might seem ridiculous, but some people find value even in those top-tier cards ... (See Annual fee)

Marijuana businesses find card processing still elusive -- Some avenues exist for legal pot-based businesses that want to accept credit cards, but details are sketchy and insiders say some are full of risks ... (See Legal pot)

Put big annual vacation on a new 0-percent card -- If you have good credit, and the discipline to pay it off before the promotional period ends, go for it ... (See Paying for big vacation)

Online loan lead-generation sites may open door to fraud -- If you're searching for quick cash, beware: Some sites sell your info to unethical players looking for their next victim ... (See Online lead generation fraud)

Mom has Alzheimer's and $20,000 in card debt -- If Social Security is all she has to live on, she may be judgment-proof ... (See Alzheimer's)

Don't be hasty in closing unused account with $0 balance -- Unused, available credit contributes to your score, so it might be helping your credit score without you knowing it ... (See $0 balance card)

Best, worst states for money management -- A state-by-state look at how well consumers manage their money, based on their average credit scores and household incomes ... (See State money management)

Chart: How states rank for money management -- A state-by-state look at how well consumers manage their money, based on their average credit scores and household incomes ... (See State rankings: money management)

Rate survey: Average card rates fall to 15.12 percent -- Jan. 13, 2016: The national average interest rate on new credit card offers slipped Wednesday for the first time in two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

New to credit? Build score with car loan, secured card -- Adding different types of credit accounts helps build your credit score ... (See Credit score)

Guide to the lottery, credit cards and what winning means -- Giant lotto jackpots inspire big dreams of living large. Here's what you need to know about buying that ticket, and the ups and downs of actually winning ... (See Lottery guide)

Don't secretly add an authorized user to boost your rewards -- Some rewards cards dangle the prospect of extra points for adding a friend or relative to your account, but make sure you tell the other person first ... (See Secret authorized user)

Maximum credit card late fee falls $1 for 2016, to $37 -- The maximum late fee that credit cards can charge will fall to $37 next year because of inflation adjustment ... (See Late fee cap)

5 ways to avoid (or deal with) late fees -- Late fees can quickly add up, and harm your credit. So avoid them if you can, and deal with them smartly if you must ... (See Late fees)

Small-business options for dealing with supplier debt -- Whether a vendor can come after you for delinquent debt depends on what type of business structure you have and the contract you signed ... (See Business debt)

0-percent intro card buys time to pay debt -- Have a plan to use that interest-free intro period wisely ... (See 0-percent card)

Fed: Card balances spike 7.4 percent -- Revolving debt balances increased yet again in November, the Federal Reserve said Friday. ... (more)

Rewards scarce from vacation rentals companies -- Airbnb, HomeAway and other vacation rental companies have no rewards programs of their own, but you may be able to coax some rewards out by carefully using the right card ... (See Vacation rental rewards)

Restoring credit after authorized user status goes bad -- When the primary account holder stops paying the bill, all users associated with the account suffer ... (more)

Check credit score before applying for balance transfer -- Inquiries and new accounts both ding your credit score, so choose carefully ... (See Balance transfer credit check)

7 quick tasks to protect your ID -- Got 10 minutes? Then you can take a step to prevent identity theft. Each of these seven steps can be accomplished in 10 minutes or less. ... (See Prevent ID theft)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates jump to 15.13 percent -- Jan. 6, 2016: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Infographic: Bad financial habits Americans most want to break -- Saving more and paying down credit card debt are among the more popular New Year's resolutions of 2016 ... (See 2016 money resolutions)

How closed accounts affect credit history, scores -- Closing excess cards will have an impact, but maybe not as bad as you think ... (See Closed accounts)

Video: Dumpster diving can expose your personal information -- One night of dumpster diving shows just how easy it is to become a victim of identity theft ... (See Dumpster diving ID thieves)

Your weight, debt and clutter may be connected -- Clutter, overeating and financial troubles may all be related via subtle emotional factors ... (See Debt and clutter)

Check flight availability before transferring rewards points -- If you don't check flight availability before transferring, you might be stuck with airline miles that are hard to use ... (See Frequent flier)

Get that debt deal agreement in writing -- The owner of a failed business made a debt repayment deal with his credit card issuer over the phone, but now collectors are demanding much more. He still has options, but not as many as if he'd gotten the deal in writing ... (See Business debt)

EMV changing how we tip? Not so fast -- Even though the adoption of EMV payment technology in the U.S. is changing how we pay with cards, the standard paper receipt tipping method many are accustomed to doesn't need to change -- unless merchants want it to ... (See EMV cards and tipping)

To get a fresh financial start, break bad, old money habits -- If you're sick and tired of falling behind on bills, start by thoroughly tracking your spending and trimming where you can ... (See Fresh start)

Credit score differences: How they occur, why they matter -- The credit files' data may differ, it can contain errors and the formulas used on it vary ... (See Credit score differences)

Product return assistance: a disappearing perk -- Credit card return assistance programs extend the window for refunds on products you've bought with the card. But they're becoming more rare ... (See Return assistance)

Rate survey: Average card rates jump to 15.07 percent -- Dec. 30, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose to a near record high this week after Citi boosted rates on multiple cards, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Canceling an unactivated card can hurt credit scores -- The lender already checked your credit and the loss of a new credit line could ding score ... (See Canceling card)

Getting the most value for your hotel rewards points -- For the price of a night at a Des Moines airport hotel, you can stay three nights in a magical European property. We've compiled some of the most dramatic hotel rewards comparisons for you ... (See Hotel points value)

Targeted reward offers: What to do when they go bad -- Incentives to spend on a card can give big rewards, but make sure you take the right steps in case you don't receive what you're owed ... (See Targeted offers)

Tracking tools and tips for keeping financial resolutions -- Tracking your progress toward New Year's resolutions is crucial to succeeding with them. It helps to know a few tricks and technological tools ... (See Resolutions)

3 steps for establishing business credit -- Business credit can be challenging to build, so it helps to come up with a battle plan from the outset ... (See Business credit)

Settling debts for half of what's owed isn't easy -- Banks aren't in the business of paying 100% and only getting 50% back ... (more)

Involuntary authorized user wants to be removed -- A near-stranger adds a woman as an authorized user. Maybe it's ID theft, certainly it's creepy, and it can to be stopped ... (See Authorized user)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates jump to 15.05 percent -- Dec. 23, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers rose to a one-year high this week after the Federal Reserve increased rates for the first time since 2006, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Financial goals report card: Maybe a C+ -- A Capital One survey finds mixed results among those who set money goals for 2015. Some did well, others failed completely ... (See Financial goals report card)

Baby-sitting money counts as income on card application -- If the work is steady and can be counted on in the future, it can be listed as your income ... (See Income)

Credit score obsession: 7 signs you have one -- If easy access to your credit score has you checking it obsessively, it might be time to rethink your relationship with FICO ... (See Credit score obsession)

Costco cardholders need a new strategy -- Warehouse giant switches from AmEx to Citi; key dates, what you need to know ... (See New Costco cards)

Financial problems span generations, so is debt in your DNA? -- Experts have both nature and nurture theories about how families' money problems are passed down through the years ... (See Debt passed down)

Disability income may be safe from business-debt collectors -- Credit card debt racked up for a now-defunct business may still be collectible, though the owner's disability payments are probably off limits ... (See Disability)

Merchant refund can create credit balance -- Yes, you can spend down that cushion, but wait until it's in hand ... (See Refund creates balance)

US report: Colleges not disclosing card contracts -- A new report finds that many colleges are not disclosing their ties with credit card companies as required ... (See Campus cards)

Options when 'written off' debt reappears on credit report -- Just because a debt is not listed on your credit report, doesn't mean you're not still responsible for it. Here are options to take care of the debt ... (See Written off debt)

How the prime rate is set -- One benchmark rate published in The Wall Street Journal affects millions of credit card APRs ... (See Prime rate)

Forecast: Card delinquency, debt levels to remain healthy -- According to the credit bureau TransUnion's forecast, credit card consumers will continue behaving 'extremely well' ... (See Debt, delinquency forecast)

Measuring average credit card debt -- Measures of average credit card debt range from just over $1,000 to nearly $10,000, depending on the type of card and how it's calculated ... (See Average credit card debt)

Trended data: the new way credit bureaus rate you -- Lenders now see how you pay your bills, not just whether you pay them ... (See Trended data)

How charge cards are different in credit scoring formula -- Credit limits, utilization aren't a factor, but wise use of the card is ... (See Charge cards and credit scores)

Fed raises interest rates, card APRs to follow -- The U.S. central bank pushed its benchmark rate up a quarter point, setting the stage for rate hikes on credit cards and other consumer debts ... (more)

What will an interest rate hike cost? -- Use this chart to find the added monthly cost of a quarter-point interest rate increase for a given credit card balance ... (See Interest rate chart)

Quarter-point interest rate calculator -- How a quarter-point increase in interest rates raises the cost of carrying a given credit card balance ... (See Quarter point rate calculator)

Rate survey: Average card rate increases to 14.99 percent -- Dec. 16, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Police report needed to fix credit after mom steals child's ID -- Filing it will allow credit bureaus to repair damage from parental identity theft ... (See ID theft)

Game plans for avoiding bad-credit stereotypes -- Even if you're not borrowing money, you risk being tagged with bad-credit stereotypes at work, at home and in your relationships ... (See Bad credit game plans)

Video: EMV, RFID, NFC, WTF? -- You don't just hand over a piece of plastic anymore. You have EMV chips and NFC cards -- or is it RFID? What's the diff? We explain ... (See EMV, RFID, NFC, WTF?)

Check American Airlines' reward partners, transfer options -- If you're trying to build American Airlines miles, or fly where that airline goes, you have more options than you may think ... (See Airline points transfer parnters)

'Smart chip' debit cards transition going slowly -- Chips are coming to debit cards, too, but even slower. Here are the seven things you need to know about the transition. ... (See EMV debit cards)

Credit card surcharge laws in limbo in California -- Law prohibiting surcharges is unenforceable for now, but that's under appeal. Other options might be better for nonprofit medical clinic ... (See Surcharges)

After bankruptcy and depression, reach for financial help -- With debts and worries piled high, it's time to stop trying to handle all the problems and seek financial guidance ... (See Financial help)

An 'accountability team' can support your debt payoff efforts -- Sharing your debt payoff plan with others can help you stay on track while you tackle that financial goal ... (See Accountability team)

Number of new cards soars, but credit limits tight -- An American Bankers Association survey finds subprime borrowers regaining access to credit, but not to a lot of it ... (See New accounts soar)

Putting a big-ticket item on a card: 7 questions -- Done right, a credit card can be the best tool for an expensive item. You can see whether it's right for you by answering these questions ... (See Big-ticket)

Rebuilding credit? Go easy on new accounts -- When working to rebuild your credit, open and maintain only two or three new cards. Any more could hurt more than helpp ... (See Credit rebuilding)

Rate survey: Average card rates rise to 14.98 percent -- Dec. 9, 2015: A Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in almost two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Weekly rate report, Dec. 9, 2015)

Go from good to excellent credit with first (and only) card -- Employing good credit habits early paves the way for a great credit score ... (See First card)

Poll: 1 in 5 debtors say they'll be in debt forever -- It's a debt dichotomy: More say they'll die in debt, yet an increasing number also say they're debt-free ... (See Debt forever)

EMV chip card tales from cashiers at the front line -- Cashiers and customers express their frustration with EMV chip cards ... (See Cashiers' chip card tales)

Global Entry perk may make big-annual-fee rewards card worthwhile -- Some premium cards have annual fees of $450 or more, but features such as lounge access and Global Entry might make them palatable ... (See Global Entry)

Fed: Card balances rise only 0.2 percent -- The expansion of credit card balances continued in October, marking eight straight months of growth, the Federal Reserve said Monday. ... (See Consumer credit report)

Second job could help save entrepreneur's debt-ridden startup -- It's not uncommon for small-business owners to rely on other income sources during the company's first few years ... (See Job)

Charity gift cards let recipient donate to favorite cause -- They make philanthropy easy, but our survey finds many have large fees ... (See Charity gift cards)

Keeping card accounts open after a balance transfer -- Consolidation can help manage debt, but goal is to pay it off ... (See Debt consolidation)

Credit utilization: How this key scoring factor works -- This credit utilization ratio is the second-most important factor used to calculate a borrower's score. Here's how it works ... (See Credit utilization)

Dividing credit card rewards in a divorce -- If you have accumulated a slew of miles, and you're heading for divorce, they could become an issue in the breakup ... (See Rewards points and divorce)

Can I get away with maxing out my credit, filing for bankruptcy? -- Deliberatly maxing out cards with no intent to pay, then filing for bankruptcy could give a "fresh start." But it's a big risk, and morally dubious ... (See Max out)

4 in 10 Americans see credit cards as their emergency fund -- About 49 percent say they'd use credit cards to pay at least part of a surprise $2,000 emergency expense, according to a Pew survey ... (See Emergency fund)

How partial debt payments affect your credit, your legal rights -- Old debts fall off your credit reports in 7.5 years no matter what you do, but a partial payment may lengthen your vulnerability to a collections lawsuit ... (See Partial payments)

US report: CARD Act saved consumers $16 billion -- The U.S. Credit CARD Act has cleaned up the worst practices in the business since it was signed in 2009, but tricks and traps remain, consumer bureau report says ... (See CARD Act report)

Average card rates remain at 14.96 percent for third week -- Dec. 2, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Weekly rate report, Dec. 2, 2015)

Rehabilitating student loan won't raise score immediately -- It takes seven years to erase the credit score damage of a default, but don't let that deter you; the benefits begin right away ... (See Rehabilitate)

Magnetic stripe begins its farewell tour -- Like paper maps and clamshell phones, the magnetic stripes on the back of credit cards have started sliding into obsolescence. How soon will they disappear? ... (See Farewell, magstripe)

Weighing rewards cards in aftermath of airline changes -- With airlines overhauling their frequent flier programs, we run some numbers to help you evaluate which card makes more sense for you ... (See Rewards)

Prepaid card and gift card statistics -- Use of general purpose reloadable prepaid cards is increasing among high-income Americans, and gift cards continue to top wish lists. Just two of the insights in the data our team has compiled on prepaid and gift cards ... (See Gift card stats)

Card updater services keep customers' auto-payments flowing -- Services offered by card networks for merchants could help prevent customer attrition ... (See Autopay)

Immigrant seeks to build good credit faster -- With basics mastered, it's time to make mid-course corrections ... (See Building credit)

Average card rates sit tight at 14.96 percent: Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 25, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly rate report, Nov. 25, 2015)

Survey: Slower EMV chip card transactions irk shoppers -- Nearly one in five respondents said using the more secure cards takes too long, and frustration is likely to grow during the holiday shopping season. ... (See Slow chip cards)

Parental conservators can block access to finances, credit -- Parents took over legal responsibility for son in credit card debt, filing bankruptcy on his behalf, and preventing him from getting credit on his own ... (See Conservators)

Best ways to earn, redeem rewards points over the holidays -- Credit card rewards you've been earning all year can help defray the costs of the holidays. The season is a great time to boost your rewards earning potential, too ... (See Holiday rewards)

Revoking automatic debits from your account -- Auto payments can be convenient, but you have rights under the law to stop allowing access to your bank accounts if you need to ... (See Stopping auto-payments)

IRS won't care if you buy gift cards with reward points -- Even if you get a "cash back" reward card that you spend like cash, it's not considered income, so shop away! ... (See Rewards not taxable)

When buying gasoline for business, watch discounts, surcharges -- Depending on your state, gas stations may try to offset merchant processing costs by putting a surcharge on credit card sales, or offering a cash discount ... (See Gas)

Airlines change from miles to price-based rewards -- The three largest U.S. airlines now base rewards points on how much you pay, not how far you fly, a change that devalues airline rewards for all but the most hardcore traveler ... (See Price-based rewards)

Know your risk before giving credit card to a relative -- A sister's request to give her a credit card for three months requires close examination, since you'll be on the hook ... (See Card for a relative)

Making sense of confusing credit card statements -- Spotting fraud is hard when so many businesses put unfamiliar, but legitimate, names on your billing statement ... (See Confusing card statements)

Options for getting a handle on a $37,000 debt -- With a good income but lots of debt, a 72-year old single woman needs to plug the money leak first ... (See Debt options)

Billing disputes lead list of credit complaints -- Billing disputes lead list of credit complaints in latest monthly survey from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ... (See Billing disputes)

Options limited when paying bills for relative in coma -- Trying to do the right thing - pay a comatose relative's card bill - is nearly impossible without legal authority ... (See Pay relative's bills)

Fed: Access to credit cards increasing -- Fewer applicants rejected for new cards, but issuers stingy with credit limit increases ... (See Credit access)

Average card rates remain at 14.96 percent: Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 18, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly rate report, Nov. 18, 2015)

Charging bills can help your score if you pay early, often -- Avoid interest charges and debt by paying in full, and keep your credit utilization low by paying more than once a month ... (See Charging bills)

Video: How one woman travels the world on credit card points -- Dr. Erica Miller uses credit card reward points to take luxury vacations across the globe. Here's how ... (See Rewards traveler)

How to react when your reward program changes -- Travel points and miles tend to lose value over time. Here's how you can guard against that trend ... (See Devaluation)

Card debt is under control for the 2015 holidays -- U.S. consumers show an appetite for borrowing but their balances and late payments are low, a report from the big credit bureau shows ... (See Card debt report)

Business cards usually require a personal guarantee -- The small-business credit card that doesn't require good personal credit is an often-sought but seldom spotted myth ... (See Business card)

Debit card statistics -- Debit remains the most popular plastic. ... (See Debit stats)

When you get a windfall, pay debts in full to restore credit -- Use that windfall to pay debts off; a partial settlement will be taxable and bog down your score ... (See Debt and windfall)

Don't agree to debt repayment you can't afford -- Stick to your budget and your guns when dealing with pushy debt collectors ... (See Debt collection)

2015 Balance Transfer Survey: Shop around for the best deal -- Balance transfer deals are stable this year, a CreditCards.com survey revealed, and balance-carrying cardholders should take advantage of offers soon before interest rates rise ... (See Balance transfer survey)

Rating fraud: Not all security breaches are equal -- Different types of fraud have different risks involved. Knowing those risks might save you a headache ... (See Fraud risk)

How hard and soft inquiries affect your credit score -- Credit inquiries can be either soft or hard, and your credit score can suffer damage if you drop too many hard inquiries into it ... (See Credit inquiries)

Rate survey: Average card rates fall to 14.96 percent -- Nov. 11, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers tumbled Wednesday for the first time in almost nine months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Closing only card means no score, no mortgage -- With no credit activity, no credit score can be generated, which eliminates the possibility of you being approved for a mortgage ... (See No score, no mortgage)

Combining cards: Rolling 2 credit limits into 1 card -- Have two cards from one issuer? Trying combining credit limits before you close one ... (See Combining cards)

Younger borrowers closing delinquency gap -- Younger people have higher expectations of missing a debt payment, survey finds ... (See Young borrowers' delinquency )

How long to wait to apply for another rewards card -- Don’t apply too aggressively -- for the sake of your credit and budget ... (See Rewards)

7 secrets of extreme credit card owners -- How seekers of big rewards, discounts manage 10, 20, 30 cards ... (See Extreme cardholder secrets)

7 things you need to know about gift cards -- Some things have changed about gift cards over the years. Here's what to know about the No. 1 requested present ... (See Gift cards)

EMV rules for vending machine owners -- Vending machine owners face a small liability risk if their card-accepting machines are not EMV compatible ... (See EMV and vending machines)

Take care closing card accounts before mortgage application -- If you're not careful with your charging habits, closing card accounts can hurt your chances of getting a mortgage ... (See Closing cards before mortgage)

Fed: Card balances rise for 7th straight month -- Revolving debt rose 8.7 percent in September, according to a Federal Reserve report Friday. ... (more)

Mortgage after bankruptcy, divorce: You need time -- Low mortgage rates will not be available immediately after filing for bankruptcy. But patience and credit-building will help in getting a loan at a decent rate ... (See Mortgage after bankruptcy )

Raise credit score 30 points in 6 months? Tough, but doable -- Attention to bill-paying, credit utilization -- plus enough cash to whittle down debt -- can get it done ... (See 30 points )

Watchdog agencies announce debt collection crackdown -- Federal and state regulators announced a coordinated effort to fight a growing tide of debt collection abuses ... (more)

Survey: Old mag stripe cards more secure than mobile pay -- Most people think the new chip cards are safer to use than mag stripe ones, but many say the old mag stripe card poses less risk than new mobile payment options. ... (See Mobile payment security)

Survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15.01% -- Nov. 4, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

'Coined' author Kabir Sehgal: Credit cards make money abstract -- Kabir Sehgal talks about the history of money and credit, and its relationship to humankind in his new book "Coined, The Rich Life of Money and How Its History Has Shaped Us" ... (See Kabir Sehgal Q&A)

Great credit score means you should reap rewards -- The longer you've used credit successfully, the less harm you'll do by getting some new cards, and big sign-up bonuses make it worthwhile ... (See Reap credit rewards)

Fraud risk minimal from contactless EMV cards -- A determined thief could intercept radio waves from a dual-interface credit card, but in practice it's not worth the bother ... (See Contactless EMV fraud)

Fed: Banks make credit flow a bit easier -- Consumers' appetite for cards grew in the third quarter, while banks were somewhat more willing to serve up new cards ... (See Credit terms ease)

Credit utilization important for businesses, too -- Paying your balance in full every month is ideal but if you can't manage that, keep your balance as low as possible ... (See Business credit)

Card-linked offers: Shopping deals you're not aware of -- Card-linked offers are automatic discounts applied when you use a certain credit card at a participating merchant ... (See Card-linked offers)

With low-limit cards, watch credit utilization closely -- Building your credit with a $300 limit card means if you buy a big-ticket item, don't wait, send in an extra payment ... (See Low limit card utilization)

Withholding a card payment: It's your right, but take care -- Withholding a payment in a billing or product dispute is legal, but you need to take these specific steps if you want it to stick ... (See Withholding payments)

Mom's Medicaid leaves no money left for debt repayment -- Plus, recently transferred assets may be voided by Medicaid ... (See Medicaid)

Beyond bankruptcy: What happens when you fail Chapter 13 -- Americans who file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy are more likely than not to fail completing the debt repayment plan. Understanding why, and what comes next, can help you avoid common pitfalls ... (See Fail at bankruptcy)

How long negative information stays on a credit report -- Late fees will not affect a credit score, while a late payment history will -- at least, until it drops off a credit report in seven years ... (See Negative credit information)

Rate survey: Average card rates remain at 15.01 percent -- Oct. 28, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Lyft, Uber ride-share drivers in a hurry to pay down debt -- Large number of ride-share drivers use spare income to pay down big bills ... (See Ride-share drivers' debt)

Card issuer unlikely to hold a grudge for very old debt -- Once bad payment history falls off a credit report, card issuers are more likely to approve credit ... (See Issuer grudge)

Fed holds interest rates near zero -- After holding short-term interest rates near zero since the end of 2008, the U.S. central bank continued to put off an increase on Wednesday ... (See FOMC)

Survey: Many fail at online security basics -- Simple steps, such as closing a Web browser when one is finished using an online account, can reduce the risk of fraud and identity theft, the survey by Experian's ProtectMyID found ... (See Online security survey )

Balancing need to save against urge to earn rewards -- Consider your spending habits and self-discipline to create a plan that you can stick to ... (See Rewards)

Pint-sized super savers -- Kids who prefer saving to spending are rare, and a parenting challenge ... (See Young super savers )

Autopay clients leave you open to more fraud, not EMV liability -- When customers use automatic payments, it's considered a card-not-present transaction. Those sales are not covered by the EMV liability shift rules instituted in October ... (See Autopay and EMV)

Most banks invisible on federal complaint website -- A gap in consumer protection law exempts thousands of smaller banks from the federal government's public complaint records ... (See Invisible bank complaints )

How paying more than the minimum helps build credit -- Paying more than the minimum is good not only for your credit, but for your entire financial well-being ... (See Minimum payment)

8 myths surrounding bankruptcy -- Filing for bankruptcy is a huge financial step, and many jump in with misconceptions of what it will and won't do ... (See Bankruptcy myths)

Maxed-out card blocks entry to 800 credit score 'club' -- One card with a high utiliization is enough to prevent a good credit score from becoming nearly perfect ... (See 800 club)

Average card rates hold steady at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Oct. 21, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed still Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates stay at 15.01 percent)

Emancipated 17-year-old rejected for credit -- She can live independently, but banks won't issue her a card ... (See Rejected)

Which cards are best for renting a car -- Save money by knowing your insurance needs, what your card covers ... (See Best car rental card)

Quick Tip video: What are variable interest rates? -- What are variable interest rates and how will they affect you? Find out in this Quick Tip video ... (See Variable interest)

Frequent flier miles sometimes contain hidden tax -- If you accumulate miles that have been purchased, be prepared to see slight charges to cover a 7.5 percent excise tax the IRS imposes when companies buy miles from the airlines ... (See Frequent flier mile excise tax)

Mystery bill may signal error, memory failure or fraud -- If an unknown credit card bill shows up in your mailbox, it's time to take a closer look at what is on your credit report ... (See Mystery credit card bill)

Joint card account means sharing gambling charges -- Getting a fraud alert for the gambling you charged on a joint credit card is a sign to come clean ... (See Gambling)

Payday lender prepaid cards: the worst plastic in the world? -- Payday lender cards "feature" a slew of gotchas and fees -- even for on-time payments ... (See Payday loan prepaid cards)

Getting a credit card after bankruptcy can help credit score -- A post-bankruptcy credit card is one step toward restoring your credit score, but there are others, too ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

Retail card survey 2015: Average APRs inch up -- The average APR on the credit cards from America's largest retailers has risen to 23.43 percent, according a CreditCards.com survey ... (See 2015 Retail Card Survey)

Chart: 2015 Retail Card Survey data -- In the market for a retail card? Our 2015 survey data offers store-by-store details to help you find the right one for you ... (See Retail card survey data )

The scariest things on your credit report -- Avoid a credit scare by seeing what lurks in your credit reports ... (See Credit report)

Closing a new card won't undo credit score hit -- Even if you haven't used the card, you've suffered ding to your score already. Why not keep it, since it may be of use? ... (See Credit score)

Rate survey: Average card rates increase to 15.01 percent -- Oct. 14, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday for the first time since June, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Infographic: What is a chip card? How do I use it? -- What you need to know about how the chip is replacing the credit card's old magnetic stripe ... (See Chip card infographic)

Luxury reward perks: What you get for paying big annual fee -- Beyond free flights lies a world of exclusive privilege, if you're willing to pay the annual fees ... (See Luxury perks)

How to transfer your miles and points into other reward programs -- Sorting through different reward currencies can become complicated but give you additional options to redeem ... (See Transfer)

Author argues have-nots better served by postal banking -- In "How the Other Half Banks," law professor Mehrsa Baradaran says the best bank for the poor already has branches, and blue boxes, everywhere ... (See Postal banking)

Using business's tax ID is no shortcut to building credit -- When it comes to credit, most business is personal ... (See Business credit)

Card rate too high? Negotiate a better one or transfer balance -- If you've been paying on time for a long time, you shouldn't be stuck with a 29 percent APR. Ask for a lower one; if they say no, transfer the balance ... (See Rate's too high)

Poll finds craziest places people do online shopping -- North Americans are shopping online while on the job, in bed, at restaurants, in the shower, at weddings and at funerals, MasterCard's Psyche of Shopping survey found ... (See Crazy places we shop online)

Roadside assistance, your credit card's little-known benefit -- If your car breaks down by the side of the road, in some cases your credit card company won't leave you stranded ... (See Roadside assistance)

Forgotten card leads to post-divorce strife -- Shared cards during a marriage can create havoc after it's dissolved ... (See Shared cards)

Think you're a joint account holder? Think again -- Sharing a card can backfire when it comes to who's really liable for the bill ... (See Joint accounts)

How late payments get reported to credit bureaus -- First comes the late fee; if you still don't pay your score takes a hit ... (See Late payments)

Fed: Card balances rise for 6th straight month -- The country’s revolving debt balance grew 5.3 percent August, marking the sixth consecutive month of growth this year, the Federal Reserve said Wednesday ... (See Consumer credit )

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15% for record 16th week -- Oct. 7, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers remained cemented in place for another record-breaking week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (more)

Once student loans are paid, a second card may be in order -- One option to keep scores climbing is to open another card ... (See Credit score)

CFPB moves toward restriction on mandatory arbitration -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is considering a rule that would ensure consumers' right to band together and sue credit card issuers ... (See Arbitration rule)

Can I earn grocery rewards points at Wal-Mart? -- Merchant category code classifications matter when using rewards cards ... (See Merchant Category Codes)

Video: Do you need a credit card RFID protector sleeve? -- Thieves can theoretically capture data from your tap-to-pay card. The chance is small, but here's what you can do about it. ... (See RFID sleeve)

Does a business card's guarantor own its rewards points? -- Agreeing to guarantee a cardholder's debt doesn't automatically grant you the card's benefits ... (See Business rewards)

US card acceptance abroad grows, even at kiosks -- Travelers' woes diminish as new data suggests the vast majority of U.S. Visa cards work abroad, even at previously troublesome payment machines ... (See Card acceptance abroad)

Repeat balance transfers cut debt, but control spending, too -- To really eliminate debt, you have to do more than transfer debt from one 0 percent credit card to another ... (See Repeat balance transfers)

Even paid-off cards usually canceled in bankruptcy -- If a card has no balance, you'll still end up losing it ... (See Credit cards during bankruptcy)

5 things to do now to avoid holiday debt -- It might be incredibly annoying to hear “Jingle Bells” in stores right after Labor Day, but when you think about it, retailers might be doing you a favor. ... (See Holiday debt)

7 merchant tips to understanding EMV fraud liability shift -- Merchants who can't process chip card payments may shoulder consumer fraud costs if an incident occurs and they're not "EMV-ready." Here's what you should know about the EMV fraud liability shift: ... (See EMV )

Survey: Average card rate stuck at 15% for 15th week -- Sept. 30, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained locked in place again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Card tips for rebuilding credit after bankruptcy -- After bankruptcy, how many cards will it take to rebuild credit scores? ... (See Credit scores)

Poll: Most cardholders lack smart-chip cards, despite deadline -- No EMV card yet? You're not alone. Even as an Oct. 1 deadline looms, 6 in 10 cardholders don't have a chip card yet, our national survey shows ... (See EMV card poll)

With chip card switch upon us, who do I call about fraud? -- Retailers will start to shoulder some responsibility for fraudulent charges, but consumers will see few differences starting Oct. 1 ... (See EMV fraud)

Banks making refunds for add-on products -- Fifth Third bank agreed to refund some $3 million to about 24,500 customers for debt protection coverage that regulators say was marketed falsely ... (See Add-on marketing refunds)

Why bankruptcy of the rich and famous is nothing like yours -- How the rich and famous stay wealthy post-bankruptcy while regular folks who file don't ... (See Bankruptcy)

Accepting international payments with Square -- For small business owners who use Square to accept credit cards, selling to overseas customers is allowed. But there are a few things you should know to make it easier on your customers and yourself ... (See International Square)

Getting a second balance transfer card harder than the first -- You got a balance transfer card, but for only part of your debt. Your odds of getting a second card are good, but will nip again at your credit score ... (See 2nd balance transfer)

ID thief may pay bills on stolen card, but needs to be turned in -- Police and card issuer need to know about the crime ... (See ID theft)

How to avoid big costs of deferred-interest financing deals -- No-interest financing is tricky, especially if you have more than one balance on the card. Here's how to avoid hefty costs for back interest ... (See Deferred interest)

How to squeeze the last dollar out of gift cards -- An estimated $750 million in unused gift card money was lost in 2014. Here is how you can avoid that fate ... (See Squeezing gift cards)

Survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15 percent for 14th week -- Sept. 23, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

New subprime accounts power credit card growth -- New subprime accounts, driven by millennials, power growth ... (See New credit accounts)

After 10 years abroad, credit record must be restarted -- Even the most pristine credit record will be erased by a decade of inactivity. Starting over will require patience and work. Here's how. ... (See Rebuilding credit)

Retailers roll out layaway plans early for 2015 holidays -- Holiday layaway programs launched before Labor Day cookouts even started this year, and more retailers are moving layaway online to vie for business ... (See Layaway 2015)

5 ideas to deal with your betrothed's debt before marriage -- If your beloved carries significant credit card debt, it's likely to figure into your marriage in some way. Take steps now to handle the emotional and financial aspects ... (See Engaged, in debt)

Little-known card perk: insurance against baggage delays -- Cardholders often don't even know that some cards provide insurance that will reimburse them for expenses incurred due to delayed baggage ... (See Baggage delay insurance)

9 debt negotiation tips for introverts -- Looking for better card terms? Your aversion to small talk may give you an edge. ... (See Introverts)

Closing a business card while preserving your credit score -- Closing a business credit card may hurt your personal credit score as much as closing a personal card. ... (See Business card)

Cards have no built-in policies that pay off after death -- You can buy add-on insurance to pay the debt after you die, but it's usually not worth the price ... (See Debt after death)

Money epiphanies: Hearing, heeding the call to change -- People who were deep in debt or just needed to change describe their powerful money moments ... (See Money epiphanies)

Wife has lower score, but gets better prescreened card offers -- Her husband's credit score is over 800, so why are issuers ignoring him? ... (See Scores)

Fed puts off interest rate hike -- Federal Reserve policymakers kept their important benchmark rate near zero, holding credit card APRs steady for the time being ... (See FOMC)

Empty nest, full wallet: How to do it -- The kids are permanently away. Time to pull out the credit cards and play? Not so fast ... (See Empty next, full wallet)

Spouse committed fraud, ran up debt, but we're still together -- With $10,000 debt in collections, an 850 credit score is not on the horizon ... (more)

Survey: Average card APR sits tight at 15% for 13th week -- Sept. 16, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers still aren’t moving, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Authorized users don't have to share credit reports -- Getting added to another's card doesn't mean they are privy to your private information ... (See Authorized user)

Credit card fraud and ID theft statistics -- Credit card fraud and identity theft are big worries these days, and we've got the statistics to back it up ... (See Fraud statistics)

My husband won't let me get an EMV chip card for our European trip! -- Many card issuers have switched to EMV chips, but some still have only magnetic stripes. Does it matter? ... (See EMV card )

Poll: 32 million adults have started shopping for the holidays -- The calendar still says summer, but millions of Americans have already started -- and a few have even finished -- their holiday shopping. ... (See Early holiday shopping poll)

Avoiding fraud in a post-EMV world -- Think you can breathe a sigh of relief as EMV technology takes off? Not so fast. ... (See EMV fraud)

Mystery withdrawals could be your lender, not a thief -- If money is disappearing from your business account, it could be fraud, but it may also be a lender you've given permission to take a portion of your receivables each month ... (See Receivables)

A 29.99% card APR is too high, even with bad credit -- Spurn that really bad offer, try these other credit-building methods first ... (See APR too high)

Halt card spending until after mortgage closes -- Going on a card-spending binge before you close can jeopardize your home loan ... (See Credit cards and mortgages)

4 ways students can build credit -- Building a credit history while in college helps make life afterward a bit easier. Here are four tips to building credit as a student ... (See Student credit)

Minimizing score damage after a charge-off -- Having credit card accounts closed and charged off will cause a huge credit score drop, and it could get worse if you don't take steps ... (See Rebuild score after charge-off)

Beware: Rebate and promotional cards can expire quickly -- They may look like gift cards, but they don't enjoy the same protections ... (See Promotional cards)

CFPB orders debt buyers to pay refunds, reform practices -- Encore Capital Group and Portfolio Recovery Associates will pay a combined $18 million in fines and provide $61 million in refunds ... (See Debt collection)

Survey: Card rates stuck at 15 percent for a record 12th week -- Sept. 9, 2015: For a record 12th week, interest rates on new credit card offers remained stuck in place, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Debt can be voided if signer was a minor -- Unpaid medical bills can generally be disputed if incurred before the age of 18 ... (See Minors)

FDIC: Store card issuer Comenity must refund $61.5 million -- Cardholders were misled over payment 'insurance' add-ons, agency says ... (See Comenity bank refund)

Credit balances: what happens if you overpay your card bill -- Your money is protected by federal banking rules, but getting it back requires effort, and a big overpayment can trigger a fraud investigation ... (See Overpay)

Fed consumer credit report: Card balances rise 5.7 percent -- The national revolving debt balance rose 5.7 percent to $914.6 billion in July, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday ... (See Consumer credit report)

Balance free companion ticket with seat availability, annual fee -- The perk, which comes with the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card by American Express, sounds great but you'll probably need flexible travel plans to use it ... (See Companion ticket)

Basics of minimum payments -- If your minimum payment is $50 but you owe $25, just pay the $25 ... (more)

Don't ignore summons for unpaid card debt -- You may have nothing to fork over, but not responding can cause further damage ... (See Summons)

Study: We underestimate our credit card debt -- We accurately recall other types of debt, but not card debt, says a newly updated Federal Reserve report ... (See Underestimate card debt)

3 questions to ask before refinancing your student loans -- As the amount of student loan debt continue to rise, borrowers weigh the risks and benefits of refinancing ... (See Student loans)

5 questions every authorized user should ask -- "Piggybacking" -- being added as an authorized user -- is usually a credit-boosting gift, but needs to be looked over carefully first ... (See Authorized user)

Survey: Average card rates remain fixed at 15 percent -- Sept. 2, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

You did WHAT to pay off your debt? -- From selling plasma to leaving the country, these debt payoff stories should inspire ... (See Debt payoff)

Credit score impact of store card financing deals -- Financing a big-ticket item short-term shouldn't have long-term credit score impact ... (See Store card)

Debt collection abuse goes both ways -- While many debtors lie in fear of debt collectors, that angst goes both ways ... (See Debt collection abuse)

Automatic cash back rewards checks tough to find -- A survey of 10 top cash back cards reveals only one apparently allows you to sign up for automatic rewards checks ... (See Cash back)

EMV terminal recommendations for small business -- With the EMV liability shift looming, merchants are looking to upgrade their credit card readers. These recommendations and tips can help you choose the right one ... (See EMV terminals)

Smart balance transfer: Do the math, change your spending habits -- Don't throw away the savings a balance transfer offers by continuing to overspend on cards ... (See Smart balance transfer)

How to stop identify theft of a deceased family member -- Cases of family members stealing an identity are more common than people might think. ... (See ID theft)

Author Carl Richards simplifies financial plans -- With his new book, "The One-Page Financial Plan," Carl Richards expands his Sharpie-and-a-napkin approach to financial management ... (See Financial plans)

Credit card advice for a 'debit card kind of guy' -- Debt and bad money habits are the enemies. Those old store cards? They're your pals ... (See Debit guy)

Survey: Average card APR remains at 15 percent for 10th week -- Aug. 26, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Steps to remove yourself from mom's card -- It's best to apply for a new card before removing yourself as an authorized user on another ... (See Authorized user)

Student card survey: Offers fewer but more generous -- The Credit CARD Act of 2009 imposed restrictions that thinned the ranks of student-oriented cards, but those that remain are pretty good, our survey finds ... (See Student card survey)

Need a small-business loan? 3 ways to beat the big-bank brush-off -- Small banks tend to have higher approval rates for small-business loans. Here's how to improve your chances of getting one ... (See Business credit)

Unaffiliated travel reward cards give you choices, bonuses -- Some cards come with generous sign-up bonuses that can be used for a wide range of travel charges, but they’re not for everybody ... (See Travel)

Collectors have numerous ways to get money from entrepreneur -- Some small-business owners don't get regular paychecks, which makes it harder for debt collectors to garnish their wages. But they can still find other ways to collect ... (See Business debt)

How a car repossession affects your credit -- Between late payments and collections, a repo can cause a 100-point score drop ... (See Repossession)

Explain medical debt with 100-word statement -- You should add a 100-word statement to your credit report explaining your late payment due to medical debt -- but don't forget to remove it later ... (more)

Ex still charging on old joint card account -- She thought all the cards had been closed. Years later, she finds out she was wrong ... (See Joint account)

How average credit account age affects your FICO score -- The average age of the various types of credit plays a significant part in determining your credit score ... (See Age of credit accounts)

Discover unseats AmEx in card satisfaction rankings -- Upstart Discover bumped venerable American Express from No. 1 in customer satisfaction, according to JD Power's ninth annual survey ... (See Satisfaction survey)

Survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15% for 9th week -- Aug. 19, 2015: Average credit card interest rates remained cemented in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

8 smart ways to fund gender reassignment costs -- Funding the transition from one gender to another requires careful planning ... (See Gender reassignment)

When credit card interest is applied -- Newbies often don't know that most cards can be used without paying interest ... (See Credit building)

Mobile banking becoming a consumer favorite -- As banking by cellphone takes off, branches are falling out of favor as American consumers' favorite way to do their financial business ... (See Mobile banking survey)

Buying a car with no credit: 6 things to know -- Even with bad or no credit it is possible to get a vehicle. Here are 6 keys to know before you make your purchase ... (See Car loan with no credit)

Personalized help for maximizing your rewards -- If you're not comfortable deciding which cards to purge and which to use, technology and professionals might help ... (See Rewards app)

Accepting credit cards won't affect nonprofit's tax status -- Getting a credit card reader to accept donations won't impact the personal finances of the person who opened the organization's business account ... (See Nonprofit)

Study: 8 in 10 Americans saddled with some form of debt -- Findings of a study by the Pew Charitable Trusts suggest younger generations are growing more wary of borrowing ... (See Pew debt study)

If we go to biometric IDs, will hackers try to steal your face? -- Advocates of biometric identifiers say worries are overblown, but a GAO report says digitally stored records of fingerprints, palms, irises, faces raise ID theft and privacy questions ... (See Biometric hacks)

Yes, raid kid's college fund to pay $30,000 card debt -- College funds are good and important, but if they jeopardize a family's financial health, hard decisions have to be made ... (See Raid college fund)

Household debt report: Credit card balances highest since 2010 -- Balances on credit cards climbed to their highest mark in several years in the second quarter, according to a new government report, reinforcing other signs that card use is climbing as the economy strengthens ... (See Household debt)

5 credit score oddities -- Quirks in the credit scoring formula make unexpected things help or hurt ... (See Credit score oddities)

Rocky start for wallet-slimming 'universal cards' -- New devices promise to consolidate all your cards on one piece of plastic. But critics say they already are outdated ... (See Universal)

Survey: Average card rates stay at 15 percent for 8th week -- Aug. 12, 2015: Average credit card interest rates remained at 15 percent Wednesday for the 8th consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Help your score rebound after card issuer closes account -- Ways to recover your score after losing an open credit line ... (See Closed card)

How to manage different balances on one card -- Know the best payoff method for a card with varying APRs on different balances ... (See Multiple balances)

I'm facing default: Are my airline miles at risk? -- Rewards might be the least of your worries if you're in financial trouble, but they can have lots of value ... (See Frequent flier)

5 reasons you need good credit in retirement -- You may be about to retire but your credit isn't -- and shouldn't. ... (See Retirement)

What to do when your retail store card switches banks -- When a new bank issues your retail card, changes in the rewards and the card's terms can follow ... (See Retail card switch)

Get authorization for customer's card before delivering goods -- If you don't take time to get a customer's credit card purchase authorized before you deliver their purchase, you may have little recourse ... (See Authorization)

Fed: Credit card balances rise for a 4th straight month -- Revolving debt rose 7.4 percent in June, maintaining the highest balance in five years, according to the Federal Reserve Friday. ... (See Consumer credit )

Video: Small-merchant guide to EMV credit cards -- Small businesses have been slow to upgrade to terminals that can read EMV chip cards. Here's what they need to know about making the switch ... (See EMV merchant)

Clearing authorized card user account information -- The simplest way to remove negative information generated from an authorized user account is to be removed from the account ... (See Authorized user)

EMV holdouts: Why merchants are slow to make chip-card switch -- With the EMV liability switch coming in October, many merchants are still in the dark on what is required of them ... (See EMV holdouts)

7 tips for using budget apps safely -- Banks usually would cover fraudulent charges if your information were stolen in a breach. But there are other risks in putting all your account information in one app ... (See Using budget apps safely)

How banks limit the size of your balance transfer -- You may see a balance transfer to a 0-percent card as a way out of debt, but to the bank, it's new credit and you have to qualify for it ... (See Balance transfer)

Rate survey: Average card rate sits tight at 15 percent -- Aug. 5, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How to build a credit score with your first card -- Should you use the card a little or a lot to ramp up your credit score? ... (See First card)

5 steps to prepare your finances for a startup -- Too many entrepreneurs rush into launching their business without adequate preparation, which can lead to a cash flow crunch ... (See Startup finances)

Subprime card applicants still facing tight credit -- The economy may be sunnier, but people with less-than-perfect credit are still getting a chilly reception from credit card issuers ... (See Lending standards)

How, when to get your file from specialty reporting agencies -- Little-known specialized bureaus have dossiers of important data, and you can often get their file on you for free ... (See Specialized reports)

Help! My estranged wife stole 2 million reward points! -- Ex-wife fools card company into transferring points to her account. How can he get the points back? ... (See Theft)

Identity theft packs an emotional toll -- A high percentage of identity theft victims feel stress at the violation, studies show ... (See Emotional toll)

Co-owner's personal bankruptcy clouds your business credit -- Think twice before applying for personal credit for your business if your partner can't manage money well ... (See Co-owner bankruptcy)

Where to turn for help with overwhelming debt -- When bankruptcy and debt settlement sound like bad ideas, where else can you ask for help? ... (See Credit counseling)

Is it time to negotiate a new merchant account? -- Some business owners stick with a merchant services account they secured as a startup, but that now costs them more than they should be paying ... (See Merchant account)

Out of 11 cards, which 7 do I cancel? -- Having a zero balance on all the cards makes credit score impact minimal ... (See Canceling a card)

Credit card delinquencies improve despite economic chill -- U.S. consumers improved their on-time payment performance on credit card bills during the first quarter, despite shrinkage in the economy ... (See Delinquency statistics)

Credit card use and availability statistics -- How available is credit for U.S. consumers and how are we using it? Our research team investigates the trends in statistics ... (See Card use statistics)

How credit reports handle balance transfers -- If your payment record was good, try to keep both the new and old accounts open -- it'll help your credit score ... (See Balance transfer)

Fed holds course but rate hike draws nearer -- APRs on variable rate credit cards will hold steady a while longer, as the Federal Reserve decided that the economy still needs support from cheap money ... (See FOMC)

Rate survey: Average APR lodged at 15 percent for 6th straight week -- July 29, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers were left unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Privacy or rewards? Some card programs force you to choose -- Some banks won't let you fully participate in their rewards program if you opt out of them sharing your data ... (See Rewards vs. privacy)

Mom steals ID, racks up debt, ruins daughter's credit -- Reluctant to turn her mom in, a daughter now faces thousands in debt that she can't repay ... (See Theft)

Changing your reward card when airlines shift strategies -- It makes sense to monitor the companies connected to your credit card rather than get stuck with rewards you won't use ... (See Rewards)

Getting the best exchange rate abroad -- Credit and debit cards offer the best rates for purchases, but there are a few pitfalls to avoid ... (See Exchange rates)

Business at risk in personal bankruptcy -- In both Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may have to give up your business, even if it's failing ... (See Bankruptcy)

Cities with the biggest, smallest credit card debt burdens -- People on the coasts aren't known for frugal living, but when you consider their income, they carry the lightest credit card debt ... (See City debt burden)

Be cautious with new credit when considering bankruptcy -- Getting a new credit card when you're about to file bankruptcy is rarely a wise idea ... (See Considering bankrputcy)

Secured card may be best when on a fixed income -- With your deposit as your credit line, you can't spend more than what you can repay ... (See Secured card)

What to say (and NOT say) to debt collectors -- When a debt collector calls, you may be tempted to lose your cool. This video shows you how to handle that dreaded phone call ... (See When debt collectors call)

How credit cards saved my vacation -- As intrepid travelers know well, few trips go perfectly as planned. That's when your credit card can come to the rescue. ... (See Vacation)

Tips to boost credit score enough to qualify for a mortgage -- Low and mismanaged credit can be bumped up by taking these three credit card actions ... (See Improve score)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains stuck at 15 percent -- July 22, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed in place again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Cardless cash ATMs use pre-staging to reduce fraud -- New technology allows you to use your smartphone to pre-stage cash withdrawals, as a way to fight growing ATM fraud ... (See Cardless cash)

How a balance transfer card can boost FICO score -- Opening a new line of credit can boost your rating by reducing your overall debt-to-credit-limit ratio ... (See Balance transfer)

Citi refunding $700 million for credit card add-ons -- Regulators ordered Citibank to refund $700 million to 8.8 million card holders for debt protection, credit monitoring and same-day payment fees ... (See Citi refund)

You've paid off your debt. Now what? -- Being debt-free comes with new disposable income. Here’s how to manage it. ... (See Debt-free)

Cashing in reward points after death -- If you've got to oversee distribution of reward points to heirs of a deceased cardholder, it's best to redeem them for something with a concrete value ... (See Rewards)

Business debt caused by partner's con? You're still on the hook -- A business owner must pay credit card debt he owes, even though it was caused by an ex- business partner's shenanigans ... (See Business debt)

What to do if you fail your debt management plan -- DMPs help you dig your way out of debt, but it's not for everyone ... (See DMP)

Can too many cards lead to loan rejection? -- According to FICO, there is no such thing as a penalty for too much unused credit ... (See Rejection)

Video: Debt collector calling? Know your rights -- Find out what a debt collector can and cannot say when they call you ... (See Debt collector)

Collectors can't win judgment without proof of debt -- A collector cannot win in court without proof that a debt is yours ... (See Proof)

Myth: Too much available credit hurts home loan -- If you have many cards with little or no balances, closing them won't boost your credit score ... (See Myth)

2015 credit card fee survey: Average card carries 6 fees -- Credit card issuers are showing an ever-increasing appetite for fees, a new survey from CreditCards.com shows, with the average card carrying six different fees. ... (See Fee survey)

Rate survey: Average card rate remains at 15 percent -- July 15, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

The upside of an adverse action notice -- An adverse action notice provides insight into building a brighter financial future ... (See Adverse action)

Don't let new card's annual fee take you by surprise -- When applying for a new card, take the time to review its fee structure before you sign up ... (See Fees)

Fed survey: Credit card rejections plunge -- The share of card applicants who were rejected for a card in the past year fell to 13 percent from 20 percent, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said ... (See Fed survey)

Perks multiply in latest generation of elite cards -- Why shell out $400 a year or more just to carry a super premium credit card? It's all about the perks. ... (See Elite cards)

Rewards earned via business spending are tax-free, for now -- The IRS has been consistent in its interpretations, but increasing complexity could prompt changes ... (See Tax free rewards)

3 ways to strengthen weak or nonexistent credit -- Building up your credit will take work and time. But knowing where to get started is key ... (See Strengthening credit)

If disputing a charge with PayPal, approach merchant first -- if you want to continue to maintain a good relationship with a merchant, it's always better to try to seek a refund from him directly than to go straight to a card issuer or a third-party processor such as PayPal ... (See Refunds)

Setting payment priorities for cards, co-signed student loans -- The interest rates on the various loans will have a lot to say about which you should tackle first ... (See Prioritizing payments)

New mobile sale apps help make a dent in your debt -- Apps and specialized websites are making personal sales simpler, safer and more lucrative than ever before. ... (See Mobile sales)

Build credit before house hunting -- The desire to own a home may be strong, but with no credit, it's just a dream ... (See Home buying)

Credit scores recover quickly from short-term debt -- If a brief, big debt surge is necessary, do it. Eating up your credit limit will hurt your credit score, but you can recover quickly with no lingering damage ... (See Short-term debt)

Chase refunds $50 million in robo-signing settlement -- Chase agreed to refund money and drop thousands of court judgments it won against cardholders in poorly documented lawsuits ... (See Chase robo-signing settlement)

2015 May credit card balances rise again -- After surging in April, credit card balances rose again in May, according to the monthly G.19 consumer credit report the Federal Reserve issued Wednesday ... (See Consumer credit report)

Survey: Average card rates remain at 15 percent for a 3rd week -- July 1, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Report ID theft, even if the card was never used -- If a card card account was fraudulently opened but not used, it's still a crime, just as someone who broke into your house but didn't manage to steal anything is still a crook ... (See Theft)

6 things to know before buying identity-theft protection -- Thinking about paying for a service that offers identity-theft protection? Know these six things first ... (See ID theft protection questions)

5 questions for picking a rewards card -- and 1 that shouldn't matter -- To benefit from rewards cards, pay your balance monthly and the APR won't matter. After that, consider these factors ... (See Rewards)

3 tips for using credit card price protection -- Price protection is a little-known credit card perk that could save you hundreds of dollars. But you have to know how it works to take advantage ... (See Price protection plans)

Business and personal expenses better on separate cards -- You can legally use a small-business credit card for all of your spending, but there are advantages to keeping them separate ... (See Separate business card)

5 tips for saving money on pet costs -- If the cost of your animal companion is draining your wallet, it's time to rethink how your pay for your precious pet's care. ... (See Saving on pet costs)

Canceling card doesn't wipe out charges for recurring services -- Once you allow recurring charges, they're tough to turn off, but canceling a card will just risk damaging your credit score and won't erase your obligation to pay ... (See Recurring charges)

Statute of limitations doesn't wipe credit slate clean -- Once a debt has passed the statute of limitations, that doesn't mean it gets wiped off your credit report ... (See Old debts)

Push notifications: the future of bank communication -- Six reasons push notifications will dominate mobile banking in the future ... (See Push notifications)

Banks' internal 'behavior scores' can decide cardholder terms -- If you apply for a new card or higher limit from your existing card issuer, they'll judge you with a proprietary 'behavior score' that looks at how you've used their card before ... (See Behavior score)

$7 million in refunds coming for card add-on products -- Consumer protection bureau tells credit monitoring vendors to reimburse customers who paid for services they didn't get ... (See Add-on product refund)

Rate survey: Average card rates hold steady at 15 percent -- July 1, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held still this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

When does interest begin accruing on charges? -- For those new to credit, it helps to know how interest can add to your balance ... (See When interest charges begin)

Video: Protecting your child from ID theft -- A child's identity is much more valuable to thieves than an adult's because the theft will often go undetected for years. Here are steps you can take to protect your child from identity theft ... (See Child ID theft)

What else can I buy to boost my reward points? -- There are ways to increase your rewards earnings by engaging in what's called "manufactured spending." But the time-consuming pursuit is not for everyone ... (See Manufactured spending for rewards)

Volume of credit cards finally back up near pre-recession levels -- As of the fourth quarter of 2014, the total number of open credit card accounts, and the volume of new cards being issued, are both nearing the 2008 levels ... (See Credit card volume)

Cross-device tracking raises privacy concerns -- With cross-device tracking, marketers are looking to connect your smartphone, tablet and computer Internet behavior ... (See Cross-device tracking)

Lowering merchant fees on large sales -- If your business sells big-ticket items, merchant fees on credit card transactions can add up. That doesn't necessarily mean you should limit your card acceptance, though ... (See Merchant fees)

Don't fall for Internet loan scam out of desperation -- After bankruptcy, your choices for personal loans will be limited, but don't make a bad one ... (See Online loan scam)

Same-sex marriages mean joint debt issues -- Millions of Americans now will confront the financial intricacies of marriage, including what happens to jointly owned property, debt ... (See Same-sex marriage and debt)

Getting US loan after living abroad not easy -- Without a current credit history and score, and after living abroad for years, getting bank approval for a U.S. loan is tricky ... (See Loan)

Consumer bureau expands complaint data -- Shoppers for financial services have a new trove of material to research, now that the U.S. consumer watchdog is publishing consumers' specific gripes about companies ... (See Complaints data)

3 quick, easy, inexpensive credit score rebuilding tools -- Paying off all your debt at once will help, but it won't rebuild a slumping credit score by itself. To speed the process, add some new, positive loan payment history. Here's how ... (See Credit rebuilding)

Poll: Americans sleeping better as economy recovers -- A scientific survey commissioned by CreditCards.com finds money worries don't keep us awake as often, but retirement and education still make for sleepless nights ... (See Losing sleep poll)

Rate survey: Average card APR rises to 15 percent -- June 24, 2015: Average APR on new card offers inched up this week for the first time in over a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

For uncontrolled spenders, cash-only may be the right lifestyle -- Despite the benefits of credit cards -- convenience, purchase guarantees and rewards -- plastic is simply too convenient for some consumers to handle. If you're one of them it may be time to switch to a cash-only lifestyle ... (See Cash-only)

Score impact of maxing out 3rd line of credit -- Maxing out credit cards is never a good idea, but as long as you pay them off quickly, your score will rebound ... (See Maxing out cards)

Rebuilding credit? Semisecured card may help -- A semisecured card offers better terms than a secured card and can be a good stepping stone on the road to a conventional credit card ... (See Semi-secured)

Paying a utility bill on a rewards card to earn points -- If you pay off your credit card balance in full every month, it makes sense to put as many expenses as you can on your card -- if you can avoid fees ... (See Utility rewards)

Cash back rewards scarce for business owner with bad credit -- Bad personal credit? Rewards may be out of reach until you raise your score, even if your business itself has good credit ... (See Cash back for business)

6 ways to safeguard cards when shopping electronically -- Shopping online or via an app is convenient, but it can put your credit or debit card at risk. Here are ways to stay safe ... (See Shopping apps )

Notify card issuer immediately if accountholder dies -- Pick up the phone and let the credit card company know; it prevents new charges and identity theft ... (See Deceased)

Are you living with an identity thief? -- Deleted computer search histories and mysterious packages arriving in the mail can point to a fraudster living under your roof ... (See Fraudster)

Don't ignore divorce decree debt mandate -- If the court says you're liable for a debt, even if the bank says you're not, pay up or expect to face a contempt charge ... (See Divorce)

FCC allows fraud alerts on cellphones -- The federal agency toughens rules against spam calls on cellphones, but creates an exception for banks to alert their customers to fraud ... (See Cellphone fraud alerts)

The facts behind debt reduction methods -- How your credit score is affected by a debt reduction plan depends on what type of action you are taking. It helps to know the facts before choosing a method ... (See Debt reduction)

Money advice from famous TV dads -- Sheriff Andy Taylor, Ben Cartwright, Louis Huang and even Homer Simpson can give financial lessons ... (See Money advice from TV dads)

Average card rates remain at 14.99 percent for fifth week -- June 17, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained cemented in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate reports)

Using credit to manage monthly income swings -- Rich one month, poor the next? If handled wisely -- and only occasionally -- credit cards can be a lifeline ... (See Income swings)

Credit score impact of multiple balance transfers -- Moving debt from one balance transfer card to another can damage your credit ... (See Transfer)

Fed gives cardholders reprieve on higher rates -- The Federal Reserve voted to keep a key interest rate at near-zero levels for now ... (more)

11 credit card travel insurance benefits -- Your credit card may offer extra insurance protection when you travel. Here are 11 benefits to consider ... (See Travel benefits)

Finding a credit card with concierge service -- You don't often hear about concierge services and other benefits, but they are common among reward cards ... (See Concierge)

Payment method statistics -- Debit is the favorite, credit cards reign for big buys, alternative payments coming on ... (See Payment stats)

Almost all business cards require personal guarantee -- If no one in your organization wants to guarantee a business card, you'll probably need to look at other options such as reimbursing expenses on personal cards and establishing trade credit with suppliers ... (See Business cards)

Your 3 options when consolidating card debt -- A balance transfer, bank loan and debt management plan can all work to consolidate big credit card debts, but only one will be right for you ... (See Consolidate)

Credit counselors turn to student debt -- Agencies that help people erase card debt are retooling, but not everyone thinks they have the solution to student loan woes ... (See Student debt)

Chasing rewards points backfires when debt piles up -- If a family member who's an authorized user racks up debt on a rewards card, there may be other, less-traditional options for getting it paid back ... (See Chasing rewards)

Credit score still damaged after report error fixed -- A "rapid rescore" won't fix a credit issue, but digging deeper into the credit score issue will help ... (See Credit score fix)

Average card rates remain stuck at 14.99 percent -- June 10, 2015: The national average APR for new credit card offers remained locked in place Wednesday for the fourth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Understanding small-business credit reporting -- Monitoring small-business credit isn't as cheap or straightforward as checking your personal credit record. But it's an important step in establishing your business's reputation and making sure you're not a victim of fraud ... (See Business credit report)

Don't be duped into signing up for a store credit card -- Protect your credit by refraining from spontaneous store sign-ups ... (See Retail card)

How to sign up for bank alerts on your cellphone (and why you should) -- Financial institutions don't make it easy, but financial alerts can stop fraud and help you stay on top of your personal finances ... (See Phone alerts)

What's the best reward card for a single big purchase? -- Want to maximize rewards returns on an upcoming big purchase? Several cards offer 2 percent cash back, but sign-up bonuses on travel cards are even more lucrative ... (See Rewards)

Remorseful fraudster must find way to repay business partner -- A small business owner who defrauded his partner seeks solutions from the creditor, but most must find a way to pay the debt -- or face legal repercussions ... (See Business fraud)

How to dispute a debit card purchase -- The protections aren't the same as credit cards, but you may not be completely out of luck ... (See Debit dispute)

Your daughter ran up the debt, she should pay it -- As a student with no income, your daughter shouldn't have been issued a card. But she did, and she used it, so she should deal with it ... (See Pay debt)

2015 April credit card balances rise -- Credit card balances shot up sharply in April, the Federal Reserve said Friday ... (See June 5, 2015, consumer credit report)

Your rights under the Fair Credit Billing Act -- The FCBA allows you to dispute charges and temporarily withhold payment without hurting your credit score ... (See FCBA)

Mom with dementia sued for card debt -- By the time a credit card issuer files a lawsuit for unpaid debt, it's already late in the debt-collection process, but you still have options ... (See Dementia)

Credit card market share statistics -- The top 10 U.S. banks issue nearly 90 percent of all the credit cards. Find out who the major players are, how much of the market they control and how much the overall market is growing ... (See Market share)

How credit mix is calculated in FICO scores -- Having a variety of credit - a good "credit mix" - is the last and often overlooked component to the FICO score formula, but is still vital to a good score ... (See Credit mix)

Paying off multiple 0-percent cards, all with balances -- One good thing: The math is easy since you don't have interest to worry about ... (See 0-percent)

Rate survey: Average card rates don’t budge -- June 3, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

I changed my mind: Can I cancel new card, avoid annual fee? -- Know all card fees before you apply or else you may be stuck with a card you don't want ... (See Annual fee)

2015 Cash Advance Survey: Convenient cash will cost you plenty -- Credit card cash advances are convenient, but use with caution: Such transactions come with surprising extra costs, according to a new CreditCards.com survey of 100 cards' cash advance policies ... (See Cash advance survey)

Fraud risk minimal on canceled RFID chip card -- RFID chips in credit cards continue to transmit information after you've canceled the card. The information isn't of much use to a criminal but it still doesn't hurt to destroy the chip ... (See RFID cards)

Top 10 phone scams to watch out for -- Phone scams are No. 1 choice of communication for fraudsters looking to cash in on unwitting consumers, and the phony credit card rate reduction is the No. 1 scam ... (See 10 scams)

Add your business as authorized user on personal card? Not likely -- Adding your business's Employer Identification Number to your personal card would be a quick way to build business credit -- if it were possible. Unfortunately, there are usually no such shortcuts ... (See Business credit)

6 debt consolidation traps and how to avoid them -- Debt consolidation allows you to lump multiple debts into one loan, usually with a lower interest rate. But fall into one of these traps and you could end up worse off than when you started ... (See Debt consolidation traps)

Fixing damaged credit? First, create a budget -- In fixing damaged credit, regular payments are a must, and you have to get a budget before you can know what you can afford to pay ... (See Budget)

Dissolving joint debt post-divorce dicey -- Dragging out joint debt obligations after divorce opens door for all sorts of problems ... (See Post-divorce debt)

How finance companies differ from credit cards, banks -- Consumer finance companies offer an alternative way to pay for big-ticket items. But look before you leap. ... (See Finance companies)

To boost score, let credit utilization guide your debt payoff -- For the best credit score boost, neither the debt snowball nor the 'highest rate' method is best. Instead, let credit utilization guide your payment allocation ... (See Debt payoff plan)

What that 'free' airline award ticket will cost you -- We compare the airline fees typically found on tickets purchased with miles. It's no surprise the rewards programs have stopped calling them "free" ... (more)

Credit card interest rates remain unchanged at 14.99 percent -- May 27, 2015: Average rates on new card offers lingered at 14.99 percent Wednesday after increasing the previous week to their highest point in more than 6 months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Credit card delinquency statistics -- Our team has compiled statistics on U.S. credit card delinquencies over the years, collections, bankruptcies and much more ... (See Delinquency stats)

Computer financing options for credit newbie -- A 20-year-old weighs a loan versus a credit card for new computer purchase ... (See Options)

How to salvage points earned on a failing business's corporate card -- A corporate bankruptcy doesn't mean rewards points will be seized. There are ways to salvage the points for personal use before the corporate card account is closed ... (See Bankruptcy)

Debt problems plague troops after military service ends -- Returning military service members often face a barrage of personal finance problems ... (See Troops)

Reporting stolen cards on someone else's behalf -- If a friend or relative has lost track of credit cards, you can help, but only in a limited way ... (See Help)

Finally got a zero balance? Good! Now change credit strategy -- After paying off retail cards and shedding all debt, don't slam the door on credit. Keep accounts open and maybe use one occasionally to keep your score up ... (See Paid off)

Survey: Employees less likely to borrow on cards for necessities -- A fifth of employees have to borrow on their credit cards to pay for monthly necessities, a study by PwC shows, but overall, workers' financial wellness is improving ... (See Employees' financial wellness)

Video: Tips for using mobile gift cards -- Mobile gift cards can slim down your wallet while keeping your gift cards organized and safely password protected. They make great last-minute gifts, too ... (See Mobile gift card tips)

Why credit limits aren't revealed until after you get the card -- Banks don't disclose what your credit limit will be until after you get the card, which means consumers are deprived of a piece of information critical to making an intelligent choice ... (See Credit limit secrecy)

Rates jump to 14.99 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 20, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers rose Wednesday to their highest point in more than six months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates jump to 14.99%)

New US resident must rebuild credit -- Unfortunately, a positive credit file built up in another country doesn't follow you here. Here's how to start over ... (See Credit building)

Poll: Fraud alert false alarms common -- As banks get more aggressive in combating fraud, about 7 in 10 Americans contacted about possible fraud received at least one alert in error ... (See False alerts)

PayPal lending arm fined for deception, abuses -- PayPal Credit, formerly known as Bill Me Later, misled customers and ratcheted up their costs with unfair practices, consumer bureau charges ... (See PayPal fine )

Finding a single reward card for the whole family -- If you're looking to consolidate all household charges on one statement, consider adding family as authorized users ... (See Authorized users)

8 steps to fighting chargeback fraud -- Credit card chargeback fraud is an ongoing problem for small businesses, which can have dire consequences. Though it's hard to detect, there are ways to fight back ... (See Chargeback fraud)

US proposes anti-steering rules on campus cards -- A proposed federal rule restricts marketing and fees on campus-affiliated cards that are lucrative for the schools but not the best choice for students ... (See Campus cards)

To get a business loan, you may need to buff personal credit -- Getting business credit before establishing good personal credit is like trying to learn to run before you can crawl. Take the first step by establishing good credit practices ... (See Building business credit)

5 tips for negotiating rewards cards' annual fees -- Credit card issuers can be surprisingly receptive to cardholders who are seeking a break on their annual fees. They won't always waive them, but you may walk away with a discount or bonus points ... (See Negotiating rewards card fee)

How I fared when I asked for fee waivers on rewards cards -- CreditCards.com reporter Tony Mecia tries his hand at getting a deal on his annual fees. The results were encouraging ... (See Annual fee waiver)

Card offer in someone else's name probably not ID theft -- Keep up your guard, but sometimes junk mail is just junk mail ... (See Junk mail)

How to combat 5 common female financial fears -- Female financial professionals describe the fiscal woes women typically shoulder and how they can be managed -- or avoided altogether ... (See Women's money fears)

Defaulted business cards result in tax liability -- Canceled business card debt can resurface as income owed to the IRS ... (See 1099-C)

Getting a mortgage? Pay debts, go easy on charging -- The time between getting preapproved for a mortgage and the closing date on your home is crucial for your credit, so don't blow it by overborrowing ... (See Mortgages and card use)

Credit card interest rates stalled at 14.92 percent -- May 13, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Advances in fraud analytics promise to stop crooks, not you -- Geolocation technology and better analytics should help card issuers more accurately determine when it's a fraudster using your card and when it's you ... (See Anti-fraud technology)

How to tell if a 'friend' stole your identity -- Sharing too much information with sketchy "friends" can put you at risk ... (See ID theft by "friend")

NY Fed: Debt in collection shrinks -- The percentage of accounts in collections and the average size of those debts both shrank, according to new data from the New York Fed. ... (See Debt in collections)

On a foreign trip, should I use credit cards at ATMs? -- The cards you use in the U.S. will probably work fine for international travels, but here are your options ... (See Foreign ATMs)

Banks to erase some bad debts on credit reports -- Chase, BofA promised to remove black marks related to debts that were extinguished in bankruptcy, under pressure from judge ... (See Erase debt)

Your rights when disputing fraudulent charges on a business card -- If a fleet card that wasn't being used by a small bushiness is suddenly maxed out, the owner's right to dispute and void the charges is similar to the rights for consumer cards ... (See Fraud charges)

After one spouse dies, card debt likely impacts the other -- If one spouse dies owing substantial credit card debt, the living spouse can feel the effect, even if it was a solo account not in a community property state ... (See Spousal debt after death)

How to shop (somewhat) anonymously -- Worried about your personal information falling into the hands of data brokers or ID thieves? You can protect it at least somewhat without having to resort to cash-only buying ... (See Shopping (somewhat) anonymously)

Don't succumb to lure of debt settlement firm -- Don't pay someone to reduce your debts when you can do it yourself for free ... (See Debt settlement)

Credit card balances rise in March -- Consumers' revolving debt load increased in March, ending two months of declining balances ... (See Fed consumer credit report)

How mortgage settlements affect your score (and for how long) -- It's been years since the recession thrust millions of homeowners into default. If you've paid your other bills, maybe you can qualify for another mortgage ... (See Deed on report)

Got a cellphone? Here come Smishing scams -- Think you're too savvy to fall for email scams? Fraudsters have a new tactic that targets your new constant companion -- your cellphone ... (See Smishing)

Credit card interest rates sit tight at 14.92 percent -- May 6, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers remain locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

What ID thieves do with the financial data they steal -- High-tech hackers get all the headlines, but an analysis of identity theft claims data by Travelers show the most common way stolen data gets used is a low-tech one: Thieves snatch a card, then go out and use it ... (See Use of stolen card data)

Cover sudden pet bills with emergency card -- Having a $0 balance card on hand to cover an unexpected vet bill can be a smart move ... (See Pet insurance vs. emergency card)

Sorry, Mom: Poll says mothers losing financial influence -- A scientific poll by CreditCards.com finds that Americans say mothers are no longer their biggest financial influence. Instead, we rely on self-taught lessons ... (See Money influencers poll)

Most issuers like to know your travel plans -- Most credit card companies want to know your travel plans to prevent fraud alerts. But you should also choose the right card and make sure you have different payment options ... (See Travel plan notification)

Elder fraud cases on the rise -- Cons aimed at the elderly include a 'grandchild' in distress and threats from a government 'official.' They're effective and on the rise ... (See Elder fraud)

Credit for startups almost always requires your Social Security number -- You may be asked for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) but you will almost certainly have to supply a Social Security number too ... (See Business credit)

7 tips for using online alternative business lenders -- When banks turn them down for loans, small businesses are increasingly turning to online "alternative" lenders. The loans they provide can be a lifeline, but higher interest rates mean you should proceed with caution ... (See Online alternative business loans)

Retail card account opens at your first purchase -- After you use the card, get the discount and take home the merchandise, it's too late to change your mind -- the card has been activated ... (See Retail card activation)

Video: Protect your privacy while using mobile shopping apps -- If you use shopping apps on your smartphone, you may be sacrificing your privacy in ways you aren't even aware of. Here are four steps you can take to protect yourself ... (See Mobile apps and privacy)

Even for old debt, settling beats other options -- Even if the statute of limitations is almost up for an old debt, you're better off settling than ignoring the debt or declaring bankruptcy ... (See Settling old debt)

Debt shifting helps your score, but paying it off is better -- Using balance transfers to shift a pile of debt so it's evenly distributed across cards can help a credit score, but paying off the debt helps much more ... (See Debt shifting)

Average APR on new card offers remains at 14.92 percent -- April 29, 2015: Interest rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

With economy slacking, Fed leaves interest rates alone for now -- The economy slowed in the first quarter, giving the Federal Reserve room to hold interest rates at rock-bottom lows ... (See Fed leaves rates alone )

12 surefire ways to create money and credit problems -- Want to run perpetually short on funds, rack up massive debts and decimate your credit score? Do these things and you are sure to succeed ... (See Problems)

Saving for laptop trumps financing 'deals' -- With a little motivation and patience, you can save hundreds by saving for that new laptop purchase instead of opting for a financing deal ... (See Saving versus borrowing)

CFPB issues first fine for unauthorized overdraft fees -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined Regions Bank $7.5 million for failing to get customers' opt-in for overdraft coverage ... (See Overdraft fees)

Transferring reward points to airlines often yields great value -- For credit card rewards programs that allow you to either buy flights through their portals or transfer points to airlines, the latter is often the faster way to earn free flights ... (See Flights)

6 tips for talking to your adult kids about your finances -- Older parents need to tell kids if they're financially fine, or in a bit of trouble. Here's how to do it with the minimum of shock and tears ... (See Family finances)

Poll: Rewards cards take larger share of market -- Bankers' group says 83 percent of people with cards have at least one rewards card ... (more)

HELOC vs. cash-out refinance for card debt repayment -- Before you acquire a home equity line of credit or cash-out refinance on your mortgage to get out of debt, there are other determining factors to consider for what may seem like a great idea ... (See Out of debt)

For sudden debt at age 75, the strategy's different -- At age 75, with an unexpected $45,000 in post-divorce credit card debt, the strategies become different: Seek counseling, but consider cutting payments to the minimum ... (See Divorce debt)

Synthetic identity theft crimes growing fast, targeting kids -- Synthetic identity theft is growing fast, and victims may be children or others who don't use credit, so they're unaware of the crime for years ... (See Synthetic identity theft)

401(k) accounts protected from collection -- After out-of-work husband runs up $30,000 on his wife's card, his wife wants to know if her 401(k) can be tapped for repayment ... (See Debt collection)

Why hard inquiries hurt your credit score -- Hard inquiries can be triggered after you have asked for more credit or by trying to rent an apartment. Once a inquiry hits, your score is knocked down a couple of points, and here is why ... (See Hard inquiry )

Create, restore credit with a credit-builder loan -- Credit-builder loans are small loans, made by some credit unions and a few banks, designed to help consumers establish or boost a credit profile ... (See Credit tool)

Average card APR increases to 14.92 percent -- April 22, 2015: Average rate on new card offers increased this week to the highest point this year, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Pay off loan with balance transfer card? -- Using a 0 percent balance transfer card to pay off a high-interest personal loan can be smart if done right ... (See Loan pay off)

'Green' your spending with eco-friendly cards -- A handful of banks offer socially conscious credit cards that donate a percentage of your spending to environmental causes. ... (See Eco-friendly cards)

ABA study: Card delinquency stays low -- Despite an uptick at the end of 2014, delinquencies for credit cards issued by banks remained well below the 15-year average, American Bankers Association research shows ... (See Card delinquency)

Finding the best card for travel upgrades -- For business card seekers looking for hotel and airline upgrades, it pays to figure out where you spend the most, then investigate the networks of points programs ... (See Upgrades)

What to do if your credit card rate goes up -- With the U.S. economy on the upswing, an interest rate hike is expected soon. That could be a shock for credit card holders, who will face a higher cost for carrying a balance. But there are a few things you can do to minimize the pain ... (See Rising rates)

Alternative lenders offer cheaper loans for more of your data -- If you're looking for a low rate loan, new startups are filling that gap, but require more data than what's on your credit report ... (See Alternative loans)

Denied: 4 credit cards for 4 businesses -- If you've got multiple businesses and keep getting turned down for business credit cards, consider other financing sources while you build credit for the companies ... (See Business cards)

If you must pay less than the minimum, call and explain -- If it's short-term problem, take the initiative and call. If it's a long-term problem, get credit counseling ... (See Less than minimum)

Pay for delete: A shady credit-report cleanup practice -- If a collection is bringing your credit score down, making a deal with the collection agency could get it taken off. However, this might not be as easy as it sounds ... (See Pay-for-delete)

Help! Ex left me with $45,000 in card debt -- A 75-year-old is stuck repaying $45,000 her ex racked up on three cards. ... (See Divorce debt)

Video: Answers to your most-common EMV questions -- As credit cards with secure chips begin to roll out across the U.S., we address some of the most frequently asked questions about them in a video interview with Smart Card Alliance head Randy Vanderhoof ... (See EMV answers)

Video: Do I need a PIN for my EMV credit card? -- New credit cards containing secure computer chips are being rolled out in the U.S. These EMV cards are sometimes called chip-and-PIN cards, which is confusing because you probably won't actually use a PIN like they do in other countries ... (See EMV PIN video)

Video: Will EMV credit cards protect my online purchases? -- New credit cards containing so-called EMV chips offer enhanced security for in-store purchases but not online purchases. In our ongoing series of frequently asked questions about EMV cards, Randy Vanderhoof, head of the Smart Card Alliance, explains why ... (See EMV fraud video)

Video: Will EMV chip cards work in NFC mobile wallets? -- Banks are issuing credit cards with enhanced security, known as EMV or chip-and-PIN cards. But what happens to that security when you use them in a mobile wallet? We asked Smart Card Alliance chief Randy Vanderhoof ... (See EMV and mobile wallets)

Your low-limit secured card strategy: Pay the bill early, often -- When you have a low limit card and want to build your credit score, time your payments so your credit utilization is lowest on the statement date, since that's when your issuer reports to the credit bureaus ... (See Pay early, often)

Video: Do I need to swipe my EMV credit card? -- Banks are issuing new credit and debit cards with EMV chips, which enable more secure transactions than magnetic stripes. In the first of our four-part series on frequently asked questions about EMV, we discuss why you may still need to swipe your card ... (See EMV swipe video)

Credit card interest rates stay put at 14.9 percent -- April 15, 2015: Average rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How debt management plans affect your credit -- If severely in debt and behind on payments, your credit score is already hurting. Entering into a debt management plan can only help by showing timely payments ... (See DMP)

Poll: Right age to get a card? 22 -- Our national survey also finds millennials are conflicted about cards: They think they should have them early, yet one in four doesn't have one ... (See First card poll)

Valuing frequent flier miles on your tax return -- The IRS treats reward miles like coupons or rebates, not like income or expenses. That means you won't be taxed on miles earned, but you also can't treat an award trip as an expense ... (See Miles and taxes)

Card acceptance fees too high? Shop for a new merchant processor -- Franchisees paying high credit card acceptance fees may lower them by shopping for a new merchant processor or promoting customers to pay by other means ... (See Merchant fees)

Financial heuristics: Creating money rules to live by -- We all have financial rules that are habits. Some help us save money, while others end up costing us. The key is to create rules that play into our financial end game. ... (See Financial heuristics)

Cut prescreened offers to reduce theft temptation -- When your mailbox is flooded with card offers, it may be best to opt-out to reduce any risk of a thief trying to apply for credit in your name ... (See Opt-out)

Paying a time-barred debt before mortgage application -- If an old unpaid debt is causing you to doubt whether to apply for a mortgage, see if it's gone beyond the collectible stage ... (See Time-barred debt)

8 ways to sidestep high-cost medical debt -- If you are diagnosed with a serious illness, medical bills might be high on your list of worries, but taking action early instead of later can keep your finances in the pink ... (See Medical debt)

Card interest rates remain at 14.9 percent for third week -- April 8, 2015: The average APR on new card offers remained at 14.9 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Canceled cards boost debt utilization ratio -- When you cut several cards from your wallet, you can reduce a big credit score hit by increasing the credit limits on your remaining cards ... (See Credit limits)

4 ways to sabotage your child's financial independence -- It's natural for parents to want to continue supporting their children through college. But too much help can sabotage their financial independence ... (See Financial sabotage)

Card shields protect against low risk of RFID theft -- Card shields or sleeves may keep thieves from remotely gathering data from the RFID chip in your credit card. But the odds of such theft are approaching zero, so focus on other concerns ... (See Card shields)

How to check your child's credit report -- With a few exceptions, children shouldn't have credit reports. If they do, it could be an indication of fraud. Here's how to find out ... (See Child's credit)

February 2015 credit card balances decline -- Credit card balances declined once again in February, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday. ... (See April 7, 2015, consumer credit report)

Merchants can usually add credit card fees -- Merchants in most states are allowed to tack on a surcharge or convenience fee when you use a credit card. But some states still ban surcharges and it's not always good business practice ... (See Surcharges, convenience fees)

6 credit-based conspiracy theories -- To some, credit doesn't exist just to make paying for stuff easy and safe. Rather, a not-so-innocent back story with covert players is involved ... (See Conspiracies)

Authorized user must close deceased's account and move on -- After her husband dies, a widow who is an authorized user on his account must notify the card company of the death and open her own account ... (See Authorized user)

What kids should know about money, at what age -- Children as young as 3 can get started on a sound financial education. Following these milestones can help you guide them toward a financially healthy future ... (See Kids and money)

Teen's secret charges discovered by parents -- His parents report more than $2,000 in unapproved card charges, but discover the culprit is their son. Is it too late to call off the investigation? ... (See Teen card fraud)

How 'microresolutions' can transform your finances -- 'Small Move, Big Change' author Caroline Arnold was tired of failing her New Year's resolutions, so she took a bold step to break them down in achievable actions ... (See Microresolutions)

Brother's got a near-perfect credit score? Go piggybacking -- Being added as an authorized user to an account with almost perfect credit will help boost your credit score and history. But is it as easy as it sounds? ... (See Piggybacking)

Average APR on new card offers holds steady at 14.9 percent -- April 1, 2015: The national average APR on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

When no credit history leads to card rejection -- You need credit history to get a credit card, but issuers won't give you one unless you have credit. What's a college graduate student to do ... (See Credit history)

Bad-check collectors come under fire -- Debt collector posing as prosecutor gets hit with federal regulator's crackdown ... (See Bad-check collectors)

Survey: More cards bid farewell to foreign transaction fees -- Consumers looking for a card that won't tack extra fees onto purchases when traveling abroad now have more than 60 cards to choose from, according to CreditCards.com's 2015 foreign transaction fee survey ... (See Foreign fee survey)

Authorized users can sometimes gain late cardholder's rewards -- If a primary cardholder passes away, an authorized user on the account is not usually entitled to the account's rewards points. But program providers are often more generous than their rules convey ... (See Inherit rewards)

Debit cards: PIN vs. signature at checkout -- You've swiped your debit card. Now the machine asks you to choose 'credit' or 'debit' to process the transaction. The question is better phrased as 'PIN' or 'signature' and the answer depends on how you use the card ... (See PIN vs. signature)

Banks become more generous with card credit limits -- Credit card issuers are showing their confidence in consumers and the economy by boosting the number of card offers and the size of their credit limits, says a banking trade group report ... (See Credit limits increase)

Disputing an auto repair chargeback is possible but time-consuming -- A warranty, labor costs and 500 miles of distance all complicate a chargeback that a car repair shop says is not legit. But there are ways to dispute the complex complaint ... (See Chargeback)

Mobile payment statistics -- Mobile payments are taking off, but how high will this technology fly? We sort through the best statistics on the evolving pay-by-phone industry ... (See Mobile payment stats)

Near retirement age is the worst time to raid 401(k) -- When in your 50s, with retirement in sight, don't use your 401(k) as a piggy bank for a child's college and to pay off card debt. You need a financial plan more than a quick cash fix ... (See Near retirement)

Payday loan alternatives more important than ever -- Having an alternative to high-priced payday lenders -- always a good idea -- could become more so if a federal crackdown shutters some storefronts ... (See Payday alternatives)

Husband opened cards, ran up debt in your name? It's fraud -- After her husband racked up thousands on cards he opened in her name, step one in cleaning up the mess is reporting his fraud ... (See Husband fraud)

Length of credit history matters more when you're young -- When new to credit, it takes time to boost the length of your credit history. With each new account opening, you cut your average age of accounts, so open new cards sparingly ... (See Young credit)

Average credit card interest rate increases to 14.9 percent -- March 25, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers inched up this week for the first time in nearly five months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

New rules proposed for payday loans -- The federal consumer watchdog is preparing rules that are expected to fight repeat payday loans without shutting borrowers off from quick cash ... (See Payday loans)

Don't let fear compel you to cancel your first card -- You may have been raised to believe that cards can lead to a life of debt, but if you handle them responsibly, they are great tools to build a positive credit rating ... (See First card)

Crooks' new target: your rewards points -- Cyberthieves are plundering easy-to-hack loyalty program websites, grabbing your rewards points and a treasure trove of personal information that can put your identity at risk ... (See Rewards theft)

Apple Pay fees could upset the rewards cart -- Fees on banks to include their credit cards in Apple Pay could lead to rewards cutbacks someday, but so far there's no evidence it will happen ... (See Apple Pay)

Q&A 'Future Crimes' author Marc Goodman -- Technology is rapidly evolving and so is cybercrime. Marc Goodman, author of "Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable, and What We Can Do About It," explains ... (See Marc Goodman)

7 debts you may not have to pay -- Paying your debts is honorable, and usually a legal requirement, but there exceptions when it can be erased, or it wasn't really yours to start with ... (See Debt escape)

New business shouldn't inherit partner's old debt -- Your new business partner's old debt shouldn't be inherited unless expressly assumed, but have a lawyer check it and be aware it may limit your new venture's access to credit ... (See Partner's debt)

If your credit's all grown up, ditch that $300 'starter card' -- If that $300 "starter card" you got as a credit whippersnapper hasn't evolved with you, get rid of it and enjoy the benefits that come with a higher-limit grown-up card ... (See Starter card)

1099-C snarls mortgage qualifying -- An incomplete tax form and an old charged-off debt may cause mortgage underwriters to turn down your home loan application ... (See Mortgage qualifying )

4 times to go old-school with your finances -- When organizing your budget or keeping track of credit card bills, technology can get in the way. Here are four situations where old-school pays ... (See Old-school)

How payments are allocated on a card with different rates -- Will a payment that is over the minimum amount go straight to the latest charge? Where payments are allocated to on your card ... (See Payment allocation)

Fed signals step toward higher rates -- The Federal Reserve indicated that the countdown is ticking toward higher interest rates later this year ... (See Fed's loses patience)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.87 percent -- March 18, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers held firm Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Complaints data show which cards pay refunds most, least often -- A look at 14,000 credit card complaints sent to the federal consumer bureau shows big differences in how cards solve disputes ... (See Cards complaints data)

Bankruptcy should be removed automatically from credit reports -- The notation that you have filed a Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy should be deleted automatically from your credit reports after seven or 10 years -- but you better check ... (See Bankruptcy)

Consumers trust their own bank to safeguard personal info -- Americans trust their banks the most and social networking the least to keep their personal information secure, a Gallup poll finds ... (See Information security)

When to close an annual-fee card -- Closing a credit card can lower your credit score a bit, but if your annual fee is due and a more rewarding card beckons, it's probably worth it ... (See Annual fee)

Gas card survey finds pedestrian rewards -- When it comes to rewards, the most venerable of credit cards -- gas-brand cards -- remain stuck in the slow lane, with high APRs and limited paybacks. They remain useful for credit-building or a quick burst of savings ... (See Gas card survey)

Merchant guesses card expiration date to renew subscription -- No laws specifically prohibit subscription-based businesses from guessing a customer's card expiration date to auto-renew their payments, but the practice is iffy ... (See Card expiration)

Applying repeatedly for credit after being turned down makes it worse -- If your response to being turned down for credit has been to apply over and over again, stop. You're making it worse. Before you do anything else, find out why ... (See Stop applying)

5 financial tips for the newly engaged -- Planning your future finances should be equally as important as planning your nuptials, experts agree. Here are five money tips to remember when you and your partner start a life together ... (See Engaged finances)

Debt relief scam mars victim's credit rating -- Debt relief scams often tell victims to stop paying debt accounts, leaving their credit rating in shambles due to defaults and delinquencies ... (See Debt relief scam)

How credit score formula handles multiple credit inquiries -- FICO uses a 30-day buffer and a process called "deduplication" on multiple inquiries for a mortgage or car loan, in effect counting them as one. But that doesn't apply to credit card shopping ... (See Multiple inquiries)

Why you should file a police report for card fraud -- To your horror, a thief racks up charges on your card. You call the police. Will officers come roaring in, sirens blaring? No, but filing a formal report can help in many ways ... (See Police report)

Credit card interest rates hold at 14.87% for third week -- March 11, 2015: The national average APR for new card offers remained unchanged Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Online payment statistics -- Once upon a time, a brick-and-mortar store was the center of the shopping universe. But online shopping has become the norm for many, and continues to grow ... (See Online payments statistics)

Credit check not needed for public school loans -- Federal school loans, such as those given after applying for the FASFA, don't take credit into account. So going back to school already in debt could add up quickly ... (See Student loans)

For foreign travel, go for the chip, don't hold out for a PIN -- Having a credit card with an EMV chip will make it easier to get around in Europe, but don't insist on one that requires a PIN rather than a signature ... (See Chip-and-PIN)

Study makes the case against credit card arbitration -- Millions of consumers have been forced to accept arbitration clauses in case of disputes, but few understand them, says a new study ... (See CFBP arbitration study)

Poll: Public lukewarm about paying by cellphone -- Six months of buzz and media coverage around Apple Pay haven't moved the needle much: Public interest in paying by cellphone remains mild, says a new poll by CreditCards.com ... (See Pay by phone)

Credit reports to raise standards to improve accuracy -- The big three credit bureaus will take steps to reduce errors on credit reports and improve the dispute process under a settlement announced Monday ... (See Credit report accuracy settlement)

Refinancing your mortgage to pay down a pricey business loan -- Paying down a high-interest business loan by refinancing your home may save you some money. But there are risks -- especially for a business that's shrinking ... (See Mortgage refi for business debt )

6 steps to protect a very small business from ID theft -- Attention to security issues is often lacking among the self-employed and micro-business owners. But protecting your company's and your clients' financial data is critical to avoiding a disaster that could tank your business dreams ... (See Business data security)

Payoff order for multiple cards: Which one first? -- With multiple cards to pay off, you can tackle the one with the highest rate or lowest balance. Choose the method you'll stick with ... (See Payoff plan)

Sharing a card with a parent can be risky -- Being an authorized user on your elderly mom's card can either help or hurt your credit rating, depending on how well she manages credit ... (See Parent's card)

January 2015 G.19 report: Card balances down -- Credit card balances decreased at a 1.6 percent annual pace in January, the Federal Reserve said Friday ... (See Consumer credit)

Boosting credit after a discharged bankruptcy -- A Chapter 7 bankruptcy will stay on your credit years after discharge, but if you make payments on time and use credit wisely, your score will start to increase ... (See Discharged)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.87 percent -- March 4, 2015: Average rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday at 14.87 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Q&A with Ron Lieber: How to raise unspoiled kids -- New York Times personal finance columnist and "The Opposite of Spoiled" author Ron Lieber touts the benefits of teaching financial decision-making at an early age ... (See Ron Lieber Q&A)

Recovery from bad credit: 1st steps -- Restoring your credit after letting all debts go into default takes resolve and a bit of negotiation savvy. These steps will help you get back on track ... (See Credit recovery)

Banks still rely on branches to start accounts -- While banks long ago embraced online banking transactions, they still rely on branches to originate most types of accounts, research by Celent finds ... (See Online financial products)

Carrying a balance? No rewards card for you! -- Interest costs far outweigh any rewards offered by credit cards, so prioritize paying off your balances before thinking about earning rewards ... (See No rewards)

1099-C frequently asked questions -- Wonder why you received a 1099-C in the mail? Most taxpayers don't realize forgiven debt is considered income, and questions abound ... (See 1099-C FAQ)

No 2-in-1 card for tax-exempt organizations -- Nonprofits are exempt from sales tax, and retailers have programs to accommodate them, but no all-in-one card avoids sales taxes at point of sale ... (See Tax-exempt)

Credit card debt at root of collection complaints -- Credit card balances are a dwindling piece of debt collection work, but they remained a top source of consumer complaints in 2014 ... (See Collection complaints)

Looking for credit after Chapter 7 bankruptcy -- Go slow, because issuers don't want to give credit right away to someone who filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Secured cards are one credit-rebuilding alternative ... (See Credit after bankruptcy)

It's not fraud if you lend your card out -- The odds of prosecuting someone for card fraud for using your card when you gave your permission are pretty fruitless ... (See Card fraud)

How to fight phantom-debt collectors -- Callers with details about you and your debts can be convincing, so it pays to know how to tell a legitimate collector from a phantom-debt scam ... (See Phantom debt)

An insider's view: How FICO scores burst from secrecy -- Creditcards.com columnist and former FICO official Barry Paperno recounts how credit scores went public, and why they're as confusing as ever ... (See FICO history)

Poll: Wealthy getting EMV cards first -- Chip-bearing EMV cards, and the extra fraud protection that goes with them, are being issued first to wealthier cardholders, a CreditCards.com poll shows ... (See EMV cards)

Credit card interest rates drop to 14.87 percent -- Feb. 25, 2015: Average rates on new card offers fell Wednesday for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Tougher rules coming for debt collectors -- Federal regulators are writing a major update of debt collection rules for the first time in decades, but the penalty will remain a wrist-slap ... (See Debt collection rules)

Financing a new laptop? Do the math first -- A 0-percent finance deal to buy a new computer is almost too good to pass up for one consumer. But being new to credit, this might not be the best way to go ... (See Financing)

Study: Law creates many too broke to file for bankruptcy -- A decade after a federal bankruptcy reform law took effect, a new class of Americans has been created: the permanently insolvent ... (See Too broke for bankruptcy)

With Costco and AmEx splitting, don't rush to switch cards -- Costco will be ending its exclusive relationship with American Express. But there's no need to drop the Costco AmEx card right away. Wait to see what new cash-back deals shake out ... (See Costco-American Express split)

Dangers of putting business expenses on a personal card -- Paying your new small business's expenses with your personal card may be convenient, but it has limited benefits and adds new risks ... (See Personal credit)

How a balance transfer can help with a large debt -- With $16,500 of debt on a single card, the best options are to find the best possible balance transfer deal, or get involved in a debt management program ... (See Balance transfer)

Collectors still calling after a 1099-C 'Cancellation of Debt' tax form -- Just because you received a 1099-C and may have paid taxes on an unpaid debt, that doesn't mean you're free from collection attempts ... (See 1099-C)

Judge: Merchants can steer you to lower-cost card -- Merchants should be allowed to offer consumers discounts or perks to use a lower-cost credit card, a federal court ruled ... (See American Express anitrust ruling)

Poll: Wealthy prefer cash-back rewards on their cards -- Three out of five wealthy Americans prefer cash-back rewards, choosing them over free hotel stays, concierge services and even frequent flier miles ... (See Cash back)

7 exceptions to 'zero liability' policies -- Despite "zero liability" promises from credit card companies and protection from federal laws, there are instances where you might be on the hook for fraudulent credit and debit card charges ... (See Zero liability)

Help your credit score rebound after a fall -- If you're whittling debt and paying bills on time after a credit score tumble, your credit scores should improve fairly quickly. If they aren't, something else is wrong ... (See Score rebound)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.89 percent for 7th straight week -- Feb. 18, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Quickly opening, closing accounts makes scores dip a bit -- After following bad credit advice, a reader worries that by closing two cards she just opened, she did some irreparable damage to her credit score ... (See Credit score)

What to do when a new gift card shows zero balance -- You give (or get) a new gift card, and the first time it's used, pfft! It's empty. Whether the problem is fraud or simple human error, follow these steps to retrieve its value ... (See $0 balance gift cards)

Households staggering under student loans -- While problems with most other loans are easing, student loans are entering uncharted heights and late payments are surging, says new data ... (See Report: Student debt surging)

Dangers of applying for an online payday loan -- Considering an online payday loan? Don't. These sites often scatter your personal information to the Internet wind, opening you up to, at best, bad deals, and at worst, relentless fraudsters ... (See Online payday loans)

Earning rewards on foreign purchases -- Charging in another currency still yields reward points, but make sure you have a card that has an EMV chip, but doesn't have foreign transaction fees ... (See Foreign currency purchases)

Beware shady merchant processing contracts -- A lawsuit by an out-of-state company that supplies credit card machines deserves the plaintiff's attention -- but scams exist in the industry so read your contract carefully and talk with a lawyer if in doubt ... (See Merchant contracts)

Raid retirement fund to pay off debt? Bad idea -- Raiding the retirement fund is so tempting when you're unemployed and racking up debt, but it's almost never the smart move ... (See Raid retirement)

Financial planning options for the 99 percent -- Getting financial goals together is not as daunting as it sounds. From DIY plans to going to a professional, financial planning is within reach ... (See Financial planning options)

Pay down debt before adding teen to card -- A mom who wants to add a 17-year-old to one of her card accounts should reconsider: Her daughter really doesn't need one, and Mom needs to get her own balances under control ... (See Adding teen to card)

Student loan debt regret: 12 do-over wishes from college grads -- Now saddled with heavy student loan debts, 12 grads share their regrets and offer tips on how future students can avoid the same big-ticket mistakes ... (See Student loan debt regrets)

Best way to apply tax refund to multiple card balances -- With a mortgage on the horizon and several maxed-out cards, what would be the best way to apply a tax refund to maximize credit score? ... (See Refund)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.89 percent for 6th week -- Feb. 11, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 14.89 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Being financially prepared for the death of a spouse -- If your spouse passed away, could you seamlessly take over the household finances? If not, some quick information sharing can save you from more heartache ... (See Finances)

18 and ready for first card: Begin here -- Having successfully handled a small car loan, an 18-year-old with a part-time job seeks advice on whether she can qualify for her first credit card ... (See First card)

6 bad reasons to open a new card -- Take a look at six of the worst rationalizations for opening a credit card, and learn how to be a prudent plastic user. ... (See Bad reasons to open card)

Not all 'digital wallets' give you bonus reward points -- If you're using a mobile wallet to make purchases using your American Express card, you may not get get those bonus rewards points the card promises ... (See Mobile)

Big debt from business failure? Try talking to creditors -- A couple who closed their 20-year-old business struggle with $50,000 of remaining debt. It's a stressful situation but there are ways of tackling it ... (See Business debt)

Poll: Wealthy cardholders prefer cash-back rewards -- Getting cash back is by far the favorite credit card reward, according to a new CreditCards.com survey of cardholders with at least $100,000 in investable assets ... (See Cash-back survey)

December 2014 G-19 report: Card balances up -- Credit card balances were on the rise once again in December, the Federal Reserve said Friday. ... (See Fed G.19 consumer spending report)

How to get back overage on card accounts -- You charged an item, paid the card bill, but then returned your purchase, leaving a credit on your card. Do you just spend it or can you get that cash back? ... (See Card overpayment)

Pros, cons of getting a business card for personal use -- Business cards sport features personal cards don't have, and no rule prevents someone without a business from getting one -- but watch the catches ... (See Business cards)

5 steps to a mortgage-worthy credit profile -- You've decided it's time to make your dream of owning a home a reality, but are you financially prepared? Here are five steps to getting your credit and finances in tiptop shape ... (See Mortgage)

How to build credit with a student loan -- Student loans are usually overlooked as credit tools. But for young people with few other accounts, paying on one can provide a powerful credit score boost ... (See Student credit)

CFPB orders refunds for 98,000 subprime cardholders -- Cardholders of Continental Finance Co. are due refunds of excess fees that absorbed more than 25 percent of credit limit ... (See Continental Finance refunds)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.89 percent for fifth week -- Feb. 4, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Help! I opened cards fraudulently, ran up big card debt -- At just 17, a young man fraudulently opens multiple card accounts without his parents' consent and says he's severely in debt. What are his options? ... (See Card debt)

Fighting back against the growing threat of tax fraud -- Tax fraud scams have skyrocketed as rip-off artists file phony tax returns on consumers' behalf. To avoid getting burned, be alert to their tricks ... (See Tax fraud)

Adding a separate rewards card for business travel -- If you pay for work-related travel on a personal credit card, it may make sense to get a separate card just for those expenses. But first, think about how you'll use the points ... (See Travel)

10 tips for using luxury pawnbrokers -- The pawn industry has gone upscale, with 'luxury asset lenders' offering thousands, or even millions, of dollars against your jewelry, art, cars and boats. But know what to watch out for before you use one of these services ... (See Luxury pawn)

Receipt requirements: Law differs from card network rules -- You don't legally have to print your business's full address on customer receipts, but MasterCard and other card networks have more stringent requirements ... (See Receipts)

8 things debt collectors may not do -- There are laws to protect citizens against abusive debt collection practices, but you have to know what they are in order to invoke them ... (See Debt collectors)

ID theft means surprise loan denial -- The bank turned down his loan application due to his mortgage and five credit cards. Since he doesn't have any cards and rents a room, it's ID theft ... (See Denied loan)

Q&A: How Cherie Lowe slew her debt dragon -- In her new book, "Slaying the Debt Dragon," Cherie Lowe chronicles the life-changing experience of having to pay off $127,482 in debt ... (See Debt dragon)

Sharing medical cards not allowed -- Medical card expenses are generally reserved for the cardholder, family members and even pets, but not your latest girlfriend or boyfriend or BFF ... (See Medical cards)

How to defeat debt and still have fun -- With some creativity, you can pay off debts while still enjoying the occasional treat, gift or vacations ... (See Fun)

How rapid rescore works when applying for a mortgage -- If you have errors on your credit report that could block a mortgage application, choosing a rapid rescore option could help, if your lender offers it ... (See Rapid rescore)

Fed keeps rates low amid mixed economic signals -- The Federal Reserve indicated that it remains on course to hike interest rates later this year ... (See FOMC meeting Jan. 28, 2015)

Average card APR remains stuck at 14.89 percent -- Jan. 28, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Beware auto-renewals' endless charges -- Signing up for magazine subscriptions or a free trial could haunt you for months or years, ringing up endless charges on your credit card through automatic renewals ... (See Auto-renew)

How a card's introductory APR works -- Exactly how does an introductory period APR work and what are the consequences of not paying off the entire balance before that period expires? ... (See Intro APR)

How to use US Airways miles as merger unfolds -- If you want to redeem US Airways miles, you'll still need to use the US Airways award chart until the airline finishes combining its frequent flier program with that of merger partner American Airlines ... (See Redeem)

Video: Credit card agreement -- Quick guide -- Your credit card terms and conditions can be a little overwhelming. But when signing up for a new card, it's important to know what you're getting into. We've created this short list of the most important terms to watch for ... (See Terms and conditions video)

44% of Americans mistakenly say credit score, credit report are the same -- Almost half of Americans believe a credit score and a credit report are basically the same thing, just different terms, a survey from American Bankers Association shows ... (See Credit score)

A day in the life of a common credit card crook -- Those who make, buy and use stolen credit cards have workdays like the rest of us. See what the daily grind is for the crooks who would profit from your card data ... (See Card crook workday)

Know your fraudster: 8 types of card criminals -- Card fraud has become a big industry, with criminals specializing in each stage of the crime, from malware coders to skimmer installers to mules ... (See Know your fraudster)

What merchants should do if customer presents unsigned card -- Merchants handed a card with no signature or "See ID" should make the customer sign -- or risk having to eat fraud-related losses ... (See Signature)

Must husband pay wife's unpaid card debt? -- If a spouse with no income secretly runs up a big credit card debt, state laws dictate whether there's a shared legal obligation to pay ... (See Spousal debt)

Unpaid joint car loan sullies ex's credit -- She was in charge of payments, but neglected to tell her fiance when they were late. Now that they've broken up, she wants to know if she can fix his credit ... (See Car loan)

Credit score statistics -- How does your credit score compare to the average American's? Check out the credit score statistics we've compiled, including the states with the highest and lowest credit scores, how credit scores change with age and much more ... (See Credit score statistics)

Why the wealthy go broke, too -- When people with above-average incomes encounter financial hardships, the reasons are surprisingly similar to people with more modest incomes ... (See Broke)

What day is my card balance reported to the credit bureaus? -- Banks and credit bureaus manage millions of accounts and have different policies for recording data, so finding when yours is recorded isn't possible ... (See Card data)

FTC: Many credit report disputes go unresolved -- When a credit bureau rejects a complaint about an error, only 30 percent of people agree that their report is accurate ... (See FTC credit disputes report)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.89 percent for third week -- Jan. 21, 2015: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.89 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Apply for your first credit card, then remove yourself from Dad's -- Preserve your authorized user credit history when applying for your own card. Once approved, you can then safely remove yourself from the shared account ... (See Apply)

Financial infidelity poll: 6% hid bank accounts from spouse or partner -- In a new national survey, we asked people living with a spouse or partner about their money secrets, hidden bank accounts and undisclosed splurges ... (See Financial infidelity)

Road to rewards redemption gets easier -- Cardholders lose millions of dollars in rewards, but that could be changing after one big issuer lowers hurdles to claiming cash back ... (See Rewards redemption)

Strategies to maximize cash-back rewards -- Most cashback cards pay about 1 percent in rewards; a couple of cards pay a flat 2 percent. But you may want to consider using a flat-rate card and a card with higher rewards rates on rotating categories ... (See Cash back)

Payments made out to your LLC are harder to garnish -- As a small-business owner, if you have an LLC it's best to have clients make checks out to the LLC rather than to you personally. Besides helping separate your personal and business finances, it may help protect you from wage garnishment for past debts ... (See Garnishment and LLCs)

Choosing a debt management program -- If you think you need credit counseling or a debt management program, look for services offered by a nonprofit, accredited organization ... (See Debt management program)

6 steps to getting a credit card chargeback -- A chargeback from your credit card issuer gives you a refund when the retailer won't. Here's how to navigate the sometimes confusing chargeback rules ... (See Chargebacks)

Is husband liable for wife's $50,000 card debt? -- A wife is carrying $50,000 in debt over several cards and wants to know if her husband be will responsible for repayment if she dies before it's paid off ... (See Card debt)

Balance transfer promotional rates on the rise -- Balance transfer promotional rates are getting more generous, with more cards offering lengthy interest-free promotional periods, according to the 2015 Creditcards.com Balance Transfer Survey ... (See Balance transfer survey infographic)

7 times to put yourself in credit card timeout -- There are key moments in life when putting away the cards and paying off any balances can be the best moves for your financial future ... (See Card timeout)

When building credit, focus first on on-time payments -- Don't overmanage your credit utilization while in a formal debt management plan. Just keep paying on time, every time and your score will rise over time ... (See On-time payment)

CFPB urges colleges to compare deals for student accounts -- Colleges that endorse a bank in return for a fee should take a hard look at the cost for students,federal watchdog agency says ... (See CFPB)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.89 percent -- Jan. 14, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers remain unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Managing 10 cards or more? 4 rules -- Successfully managing 10 or more credit card accounts requires a certain amount of supervision, particularly to prevent fraud. But if you can handle them well, go for it ... (See Multiple cards)

Airline frequent flier miles should survive if you file for bankruptcy -- Banks can cancel reward cards if you’re insolvent, but you shouldn't lose frequent flier points you've earned through the cards if they've already been posted to your airline account ... (See Points in bankruptcy)

Credit card delinquency rates rise slightly in 2014 -- Delinquent credit card balances rose slightly in the third quarter of 2014, but remain far below the 15 year average, says the American Bankers Association ... (See Credit card delinquency rates)

Automatic stays in bankruptcy stop debt collection immediately -- The automatic stay is the cornerstone of the bankruptcy process. By freezing collection actions it gives the consumer breathing room to figure out what to do next ... (See Automatic stays)

Jail or no? Penalties for using partner's credit card -- Stealing a business partner's credit card can lead to prosecution and jail time. But charges rung up by an authorized user are not considered theft ... (See Partner)

Can self-hypnosis apps help you think your way out of debt? -- Proponents say self-hypnosis apps can help you change your financial habits from the comfort of your couch, but skeptics say the only thing getting lighter is your wallet ... (See Hypnosis)

Don't default on co-signed loan to teach son a debt lesson -- Letting a car loan go into default to show a kid what happens is a lot like driving the car into a wall to show him what happens if you don't use the brakes ... (See Co-signers)

Partial payment agreements can hurt your credit score -- Reaching a partial payment agreement with a lender at a lower interest rate does wonders for your budget, but can crush your credit score ... (See Credit score)

November 2014 G-19 report: Card balances down -- Credit card balances declined for the first time in two months in November, the Federal Reserve said Thursday. ... (more)

Balance Transfer Survey: Offers more generous -- The typical credit card balance transfer offers have become more generous, but you have to act quickly to take advantage of them, according to a 2015 CreditCards.com analysis of 100 popular credit card offers ... (See Balance transfer survey)

0-percent balance transfer payoff calculator -- Figure the monthly payment needed to pay off the balance transfer before the interest-free period ends -- and the price if you can't quite make itUse the following calculator to evaluate whether or not that new balance transfer offer is a good deal ... (See 0-percent calculator)

Credit card interest rates slide to 14.89 percent -- Jan. 7, 2015: Average rates on new credit card offers fell Wednesday for the second straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

How credit charging limits work -- It may be obvious to more experienced cardholders, but for newbies, knowing how credit limits work gives you the power to avoid expensive mistakes ... (See Credit limits)

Video: Mobile wallet security -- is it safe to photograph your credit card? -- Memories of celebrity phone hacks may rightly make you nervous about capturing an image of your credit card for a mobile wallet. But it's not the same as taking a regular photo, as long as you're using a secure payment app ... (See Mobile security)

Transferring miles, points between airlines not allowed -- You can't transfer the miles from one airline's credit card reward program to another, so comparison shop and make your initial choice carefully ... (See Transferring miles)

New protections from financial 'gotchas' in 2015 -- New rules coming in 2015 from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau should make it safer and less expensive to use plastic and other forms of consumer debt ... (See 2015 CFPB preview)

Why your employer may deny you a company card -- A small business has to weigh several factors before giving a new employee a company card for travel expenses. Understanding them can help employees and small business owners both start off on better footing ... (See Company cards)

Surviving high costs of doomsday prepping -- Preparing for dire scenarios, be they man-made or natural, can be an expensive endeavor, but doesn't have to be reserved for just the rich ... (See Doomsday prep costs)

ABA study: 'Revolver' card holders down, 'transactors' rise -- Fewer cardholders carried balances, while more cardholders paid in full each month in the second quarter of 2014, the American Bankers Association found ... (See Study: 'Transactors' rise)

Living on disability, with $8,000 in card debt -- With no assets and only disability income, repayment options are nonexistent and bankruptcy too expensive for a cardholder with $8,000 in card debt. ... (See Disabled)

Paying by cash won't build credit score -- If you've never made a late payment in your life, you'd think you'd have a good credit score. Not so if those payments have all been in cash. But fear not: You can get a score without going into debt. ... (See Cash only )

Credit card interest rates fall to 14.91 percent -- Dec. 31, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers edged lower this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

9 baby steps that lead to big financial goals -- Breaking down big goals into baby steps makes them seem less overwhelming. We've come up with a few small actions to get on the path to financial health and sound credit ... (See Baby steps)

Should a student have more than one card? -- While there is no reason a young adult can't manage multiple cards, juggling so many may present more challenges than a student may expect ... (See Too many cards)

Travel cards' best signup point offers require excellent credit -- Most rewards cards are targeted at people with excellent credit -- with FICO scores of 750 and above. But if your credit is in the "good" range, you still have options ... (See Sign-up bonus score)

6 ways to give a charitable donation by credit card -- Choices abound for giving to charities by credit cards, but make sure you watch the fees and get your tax deduction ... (See Charity donations by credit card)

Secret financial escape plan for domestic violence victims -- It’s common for abusers to keep victims in the dark about household finances and to limit access to bank accounts, but using a bit of stealth can help build much-needed financial independence ... (See Escape)

'Joint and several liability' clause shares business debt risk -- Small businesses have a hard time finding credit cards that don't require a personal guarantee. There are some that will allow you to share the liability with your company, but that has limits ... (See Liability)

There's no quick credit score fix -- Credit scoring formulas are as complicated as our often-tangled personal lives. There are no quick fixes, so keep your focus on the big things, such as on-time payments ... (See No quick fix)

Closed accounts affect your credit score, but maybe not how you think -- No matter who closes an account, the account holder or creditor, it will have an impact on a credit score. How much depends on the overall credit utilization ... (See Closed accounts)

Rates remain at 14.92 percent for 2nd week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 24, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly Rate Report)

Steps to take when a family friend steals your card -- When someone you know fraudulently uses your card and racks up big debt, you have to file a police report in order to clear up your credit ... (See 'Friendly' fraud)

Mobile shopping apps raise privacy and security issues -- A CreditCards.com investigation reveals that mobile shopping apps may be accessing your phone's camera, text messages, flashlight and more, and collecting data you're not be aware of ... (See Shopping app privacy )

4 ways to evaluate mobile shopping app privacy, security -- While app developers, security experts and the federal government debate how to regulate mobile data collection, there are a number of steps consumers can take to protect their privacy and increase data security while using mobile shopping apps ... (See Mobile app privacy)

Apple vs. Android: Which platform's apps are more secure? -- While Android and Apple devices collect data and grant permissions in different ways, that doesn't necessarily mean one platform protects consumer privacy more than the other. Experts explain the differences ... (See Apple vs. Android)

Beating the year-end deadline for elite flier status -- Need only a few thousand miles to hit an elite level in your frequent flier program? The situation can be especially complex for US Airways customers, as the airline merges with American Airlines. But there are a few options ... (See Elite status)

What merchants should do when they suspect card fraud -- No merchant wants to offend honest customers by turning the shopping experience into what feels like a prosecution. At the same time, you can't afford to turn a blind eye to fraud ... (See Merchants and card fraud)

Lifting Cuba restrictions means easier credit, debit use -- Consumers will find it easier to pay for things in Cuba after President Obama lifts restrictions on use of U.S.-issued credit, debit cards there ... (See Cuba)

Over-limit card scam fools cardholder -- A cardholder gave her bank info over the phone to her card issuer to prevent an over-limit charge. But it probably wasn't her bank who called, but a thief ... (See Scam)

Apple Pay vs. Google Wallet vs. Softcard -- a mobile wallet review -- CreditCards.com tried out Apple Pay, Google Wallet and Softcard to see how they stack up against each other -- and your old-fashioned wallet ... (See Compare mobile)

Card borrowing lags while student, auto loans soar -- Consumers are borrowing more to finance cards and college degrees, while credit card borrowing is stuck at 2003 levels, a Federal Reserve Bank of New York report shows ... (See Borrowing)

How many cards is too many? -- While there's no right number, you can go too far in either direction and end up hurting your credit score ... (See Too many cards)

Fed: Countdown to higher rates continues at 'patient' pace -- Interest rate setters at the Federal Reserve signaled that near-zero market rates are approaching an end, but they'll not be rushed ... (See Fed 'patient' with rate hikes)

Credit card interest rates decrease to 14.92 percent -- December 17, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers decline slightly to 14.92 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

7 high-tech holiday scams -- As they attempt to spoil your holidays, crooks are turning to technology, using email, apps and phony online surveys in service of their cons ... (See Holiday scams)

Jobless grad with student loans, $29,000 card debt ponders bankruptcy -- A recent graduate not only has student loan payments, but card debt of almost $30,000 -- and no job. Is bankruptcy her only answer? ... (See Bankruptcy)

5 simple ways to keep frequent flier miles from expiring -- There are a number of ways to keep your frequent flier account active, even without a credit card. They might take a little time and money, but investing to preserve a cache of valuable frequent flier miles can make sense ... (See Miles)

Campus card agreements continue shift from credit to debit -- Special deals to market credit cards on campus are declining, but other types of plastic -- which face less disclosure -- are gaining ... (See College cards)

Minimize costs of card acceptance without surcharges -- Interchange fees can add up for small businesses that accept credit cards. But adding a surcharge for card-paying customers is not the answer – especially in states where surcharges are banned. There are other ways to mitigate card acceptance costs ... (See Merchant fees)

Biometrics: Your body could be your next password -- Call it body language: Finger prints, vein scans, voiceprints and other unique biological means of authenticating a person’s identity for credit card purchases are closer to reality than they are to the Jetsons ... (See Biometrics)

Video: Overcoming financial infidelity -- Couples who keep secrets about money may also be hiding other issues. Take these steps to avoid and overcome financial infidelity ... (See Financial infidelity)

Want a mortgage? Ditch cash-only, build a credit history -- Unless you have the cash to buy a house, you'll need a mortgage. And you can't get a home loan without some kind of credit history ... (See Cash-only)

Authorized users can't access credit card account information -- Authorized users cannot access the individual account information, which can be frustrating if you think you're a joint account holder ... (See Account information)

CFPB moves to soften medical debt's impact -- It's unique among debts, so medical debt deserves to get special scrutiny, the federal consumer watchdog agency decides ... (See Medical debt)

Average card rates rest at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- December 10, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held at 14.95 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

You can't boost secured card limit with extra cash -- A college student with a secured card wants to increase his credit limit and asks whether giving the issuer more cash will do the trick ... (See Credit limit)

Poll: More Americans expect to be in debt forever -- A new survey conducted by CreditCards.com asks Americans when they expect to get out of debt; 18 percent of those in debt say "never" ... (See In debt until death)

Holiday buying 2014: more savings and gift cards, less credit -- Fewer Americans plan to holiday shop with credit cards in 2014, while more have set aside money or will use gift cards for their purchases, an Accenture study finds ... (See Holiday buying 2014)

How to get, use a low-limit card -- If a low credit limit is desired, you have to start backward. A higher limit card can be downsized once the account is approved ... (See Low-limit)

Choose your rewards strategy: One card? Or multiple? -- Using one rewards card consolidates points, but having several lets you be sure every dollar spent earns you something back ... (See Multiple rewards cards)

8 tips for merchants to avoid credit card chargebacks -- Chargebacks are a costly and unfortunate fact of life for many small businesses that accept credit cards. However, there are ways you can protect yourself against unfair chargebacks ... (See Chargebacks)

Business or personal credit: Which can be built faster? -- Generally speaking, you can build personal credit faster than business credit. But for small-business owners, it's important to pursue both ... (See Building credit)

Don't be fooled by these 6 data breach myths -- Do you think hackers target only large retailers? Or that smart-chip cards will be our security salvation? Think again. ... (See 6 data breach myths)

Avoid late payments by setting up auto bill pay -- Life happens, and when it does, it's easy to forget a credit card payment. To protect your credit score and avoid fees, stop late payments before they occur ... (See Late pay)

Fed: Credit card debt rises 6.2 percent -- Revolving debt increased at a 1.3 percent annual pace in October, according to the Federal Reserve's preliminary G.19 report on consumer credit. ... (more)

8 ways seniors can ease student loan debt pain -- Student loan debt carried by seniors has quadrupled, but the elderly don't have a lifetime of increasing earnings ahead to help them cope ... (See Student loans)

Opening 3 cards at once dings credit score -- Unlike rapid-fire applications for mortgages or car loans, which are bundled into a single credit score hit, each card application counts against you ... (See Credit score)

Credit card interest rates decline to 14.95 percent -- December 3, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers declined slightly this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Tips to rebuild credit after living abroad -- After living overseas for five years, bringing a dormant U.S. credit file back to life takes a few smart moves combined with a little patience ... (See Rebuilding US credit)

9 tips for using mobile gift cards safely -- A growing number of mobile gift cards and apps let you give, receive and use gift cards all on your smartphone -- no traditional wallet needed. Convenient, right? But they also present new security issues ... (See Mobile gift cards)

Poll: If given $1,000 in miles or cash back, most would splurge, not save -- At least 83 percent of Americans said they would splurge in some fashion if they received $1,000 in travel miles or credit card cash rewards, a poll from Capital One found ... (See Rewards splurge)

Reward cards for a company's small fleet -- There are different kinds of cards that a company's drivers can use at the gas pump, and they offer different levels of data and control regarding purchases ... (See Gas rewards)

Banks that make the most money, and the least, on credit card loans -- The most costly card companies are ones you probably never heard of -- but whose cards you just might carry ... (See Yields)

What yield does your bank make on credit cards? -- Using 2013 federal bank data, we list 500 U.S. banks and show the percentage yield they make from credit card holders, before and after losses ... (See 500 banks' yields)

Understanding 'consent' to charge a card -- A merchant needs consumer consent before charging their debit or credit card for a purchase. But there are some gray areas where misunderstanding of the law can cause disputes ... (See Consent)

Video: 4 young adult money mistakes to avoid -- We all make mistakes in our 20s. But when it comes to your money and your credit, you can end up paying for those mistakes well into your 30s -- and beyond. Avoid these four common errors of youth ... (See 4 money mistakes)

Inheritance spent, bankruptcy looming -- She inherited $36,000, but instead of paying her credit card debt, she spent it. During bankruptcy, does she have to reveal where the money went? ... (See Bankruptcy disclosure)

Landlords limited in ability to pull tenants' credit reports -- Though a tenant has left rent unpaid and thousands in damages, that's not enough to give a landlord the right to pull a credit report ... (See Tenants' credit reports)

Mom offers daughter balance transfer deal -- A 28-year-old's mom offers to pay off $2,400 in card debt, but then wants to cut daughter loose as an authorized user on her card ... (See Authorized user)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.98 percent -- Nov. 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Strategies for unlocking airline award seats -- Airline frequent flier programs make it easier to earn miles than to redeem them for tickets. Having the right credit card might just open up a few more seats that can be purchased using points ... (See Award travel)

'Webrooming' trend reduces online shipping costs, problems -- This holiday season, shoppers are more likely to price compare online, then head to the store to buy, to avoid shipping costs, delivery problems ... (See Webrooming)

Hidden debt shouldn't hurt spouse's business credit -- A woman's personal debts should not endanger her husband's business credit. But the fact that she has hidden the debt from him signals other kinds of problems ... (See Debts)

Survey: 3 in 4 Americans make impulse purchases -- A national survey by Creditcards.com of 1,000 adults found more than three out of four Americans confess to making impulse purchases ... (See Impulse)

4 tips to minimize impulse buying -- Impulse buying is a popular habit, but not always a good one. If you're an impulsive buyer wondering how to avoid making another unplanned purchase, here's how to help keep your spending in check. ... (See Impulse buying tips)

Card applications fall among younger, lower-score consumers -- Fewer young people and people with low credit scores are applying for credit cards, according to a new consumer survey from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York ... (See Card applications survey)

If loan to friend or family goes bad, you may take a tax deduction -- When friends or family borrow from you and then default, the IRS allows a bad debt tax deduction -- if you documented the loan and file the right forms ... (See Bad debt deduction)

Parent's nursing home costs take priority over card debt -- Before moving into a nursing home, her dad paid his card debt out of Social Security income. Now that income goes to the nursing home ... (See Prioritizing debt)

5 credit don'ts for homebuyers applying for mortgages -- When you're about to apply for a mortgage, tread lightly on making changes to your credit. Steps you think should be helpful could derail your loan ... (See Mortgage credit don'ts)

Lessons from cities with the best and worst credit scores -- One city is known for college grads, the other for cotton and the Blues. Measured by credit score, Mankato, Minnesota, and Greenwood, Mississippi, are as far apart financially as they are culturally ... (See Best, worst scores)

Credit card interest rates fall to 14.98 percent -- Nov. 19, 2014: Average rates on new card offers fell below 15 percent Wednesday for the first time in more than a year, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Ex didn't pay up, so your student loan defaulted? Go after him -- The court said he had to pay half of his ex-wife's student loan, but he shirked, and she isn't making enough, so now the loan's in default ... (See Default)

Online fraud may surge after EMV chip card rollout -- U.S. issuers are replacing traditional magnetic stripe credit cards with cards containing counterfeit-resistant EMV chips. But fraudsters are expected to adapt, turning to online and other forms of fraud ... (See Online fraud surge)

Some cards generous for travel, give less in cash back rewards -- If a travel card turns out to offer different rewards or fewer points than you expected, consider canceling it before the annual fee comes due ... (See Travel rewards)

'Spam Nation' author Brian Krebs sheds light on card data black market -- An insider on the digital black market, Brian Krebs uncovers major credit card breaches before the big retailers know what hit them. He takes readers along in his book "Spam Nation" ... (See Spam Nation)

How trauma leads to destructive financial choices -- Child abuse. Warfare. Assault. If you have endured a life-threatening event, you may be more likely to make poor money decisions. ... (See Trauma)

A business may spurn debit cards, but why? -- Small businesses running subscription-type services may find debit and prepaid cards a hassle. But think carefully before refusing to accept them ... (See Refuse debit)

Adding yourself to spouse's card is fraud -- Taking the liberty of adding yourself to your spouse's card as an authorized user is considered fraud, and you could be charged with identity theft ... (See Fraud)

'Hand to Mouth' author Linda Tirado: Broke means bad money decisions -- Former IHOP night cook-turned-author Linda Tirado explains in very frank terms why being poor often leads to making shortsighted financial decisions ... (See Hand-to-mouth)

Study: Online accounts often go unchecked for fraud -- Americans regularly check their bank account and credit card statements for suspicious activity, but less than a third check various online accounts at least once a month, a study by credit bureau Experian finds ... (more)

5 steps to dispute debt caused by ID theft -- Take these steps to uncover all the damage left by an ID thief, contest the fraudulent debts and end a debt collector's scare tactics ... (See Disputing fraud)

New rules aim to tame prepaid cards -- The fee-laden cards, gaining in popularity, would have to disclose more about those fees under rules unveiled by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau ... (See Prepaid rules)

Credit card interest rates slide to 15 percent -- Nov. 12, 2014: Average rates on new card offers declined this week for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report Nov. 12, 2014)

Shared card leads to collection mess after a bankruptcy -- When Dad declared bankruptcy, the debt collectors shifted their attention to his daughter to collect a $3,600 balance on the credit card they shared ... (See Shared card)

Retailer beacons track your phone as you shop, raising privacy issues -- Retailers increasingly are using electronic beacons that track consumers' smartphones to analyze shopping behavior, improve service and offer customized deals. But the technology also raises privacy concerns ... (See Beacons)

Student debt on the rise for the elderly -- A small but growing number of elderly Americans are paying back student loans well into retirement, many of them struggling to keep on top of payments while on a fixed income ... (See Senior debt)

Cash-advance PIN on an EMV card doesn't make it 'chip-and-PIN' -- Today's cards may have two types of PINs: one to complete a purchase at an EMV chip-and-PIN terminal, the other that allows you to get cash advances at ATMs ... (See PINs)

How startups can quickly begin accepting credit cards -- An entrepreneur wants to temporarily share a card processing machine with an established business while he gets his company up and running. Bad idea. But there are other ways to quickly begin accepting credit cards from customers ... (See Quick acceptance)

2014 CreditCards.com Penalty Rate Survey -- Those who fall 60 days behind in credit card payments face an average penalty interest rate of 28.45 percent, according to CreditCards.com's survey of 100 major U.S. credit cards ... (See Penalty rates survey)

Fed: Card balances rise once again in September 2014 -- Credit card balances rose at a 2 percent annual pace in September after a short-lived balance decline in August, the Federal Reserve said Friday ... (See September G.19 consumer credit report)

Have a balance transfer financial strategy -- Yes, comparison shop for low rates and fees, but more importantly, know how a transfer will fit into your financial big picture ... (See Balance transfer strategy)

Use of reloadable cards surging among millennials -- Ownership of of general-purpose, reloadable cards climbed 11 percent from 2011 to 2013 among younger adults, a study by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia finds ... (See Millennials and prepaid cards)

Steps to rebuild credit after bankruptcy -- After declaring bankruptcy obtaining secured credit sources and becoming an authorized user can help bring life back to your line of credit ... (See Bankruptcy)

Credit card ownership statistics -- How many credit cards does the average American have, and what types do they have? We've compiled industry statistics to answer those questions and more about who's carrying what cards ... (See Card ownership statistics)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.09 percent -- Nov. 5, 2014: Average rates on new card offers held steady Wednesday at 15.09 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Employed grad with no debt gets rejected for new card -- With no debt, a job and regular payments on a low-limit card, a recent grad wonders what she has to do in order to get approved for a new card ... (See New credit)

Currency changes to aid blind slow to take shape -- New technology and phone apps have made it easier for blind consumers to discern cash, despite delays in physically changing the currency ... (See Blind)

When canceling a rewards card, purge clutter, but not points -- By all means, cancel a rewards card that is no longer right for you, but don't be hasty. Try to hang onto the points, and see if the issuer will offer to sweeten your deal ... (See Canceling rewards)

Can I open one rewards card for multiple businesses? -- There's nothing stopping you from using a single card for multiple companies you own, but it's generally not good business practice. There may be better ways to rack up rewards ... (See Rewards)

Fed: banks ease grip on cards -- Just as banks are finally lowering their barriers to credit card ownership, consumers aren't so keen to accept them, says a new Fed survey of senior loan officers ... (See Banks loosen grip)

Know your rights under the Truth in Lending Act -- This federal law provides bedrock consumer protection by requiring lenders to disclose credit terms in a standardized way, and sets the rules for fees and billing ... (See TILA)

Options limited if authorized user refuses to pay charges -- Call it authorized-user blackmail: A daughter adds her dad to her card, he runs up the balance, but threatens to stop payments if she closes the card ... (See Authorized)

6 steps to using credit cards to manage caregiving costs -- When it comes to managing caregiving costs for a loved one among family members, credit cards can help, but only if everyone plays by the rules ... (See Caregiver)

How early payment can result in late fees -- Leaving town? Paying your card bill early can backfire if you miss making the minimum payment by the due date, leaving you with late fees and penalty rates ... (See Early payment, late fee)

Study: More young consumers with good credit have cards -- A widening divide is developing among young consumers, as those with good credit are increasingly taking on credit cards, while those with bad credit are taking on less, according to a TransUnion study ... (See Young consumers)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.09 percent -- Oct. 29, 2014: Average rates on new card offers rose slightly Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Negotiation is key for defaulted student loan -- When a private student loan is in default, bringing the loan current may require a lump-sum payment as well as written proof of what you can afford to pay ... (See Default)

EMV switch won't eliminate travel woes -- As issuers roll out more secure chip cards in the U.S., they're opting for chip-and-signature technology, rather than the chip-and-PIN standard used in many other countries ... (See Chip-and-PIN)

Fed ends special stimulus for economy -- The Federal Reserve announced the end of its bond-buying program, but signaled that it will keep its main lever on interest rates at near-zero levels ... (more)

Retailers push system to rival Apple Pay and other mobile wallets -- Two drugstore chains switched off support for Apple Pay, as a group of big retailers gets behind a rival system for checkout smartphone payments ... (See Mobile payments)

Rules for baggage perks might have exceptions -- Airline reward cards allow free checked bags for the cardholder only under certain circumstances, but ticket agents sometimes offer flexibility ... (See Checked bags)

Teach your teens about these 5 scams -- You've alerted your teen to many dangers lurking in the world, but have you ever had a talk about how to avoid being scammed? ... (See Teaching teens)

How a DUI can tank your credit -- While a conviction for driving under the influence won't show up directly on your credit report, the financial ramifications that follow a conviction can really flush your score ... (See DUI)

Should you get a credit card for your new startup? -- Getting a business credit card can be helpful for a new business, but not in lieu of getting enough startup financing ... (See Startup card)

Old-school phone scammers make comeback with modern twist -- Old-school telephone fraud is making a comeback as fraudsters are again more likely to contact you by phone than through websites or email ... (See Telephone scams)

Balance transfer impact on your credit score -- Moving a high-interest card balance to a lower-interest card you already have shouldn't hurt your score, but there are other issues to consider ... (See Balance transfer)

After the breach: Should you enroll in ID or credit monitoring services? -- Many retailers whose databases have been hacked are offering credit monitoring or identity protection services. Depending on what you sign up for, the services can prevent full-out identity theft, or simply duplicate steps you can take on your own ... (See Breach)

Charge-offs irreversible, even if co-signer not notified of debt -- When a widower is denied credit six months after his wife's death, he finds a charge-off on a co-signed account dropped his credit score almost 200 points ... (See Co-sign)

Credit card interest rates linger at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 22, 2014: Average rates on new card offers stayed at 15.07 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates Report, Oct. 22, 2014)

How credit cards impact your credit score -- When it comes to your credit score, credit cards have the power to help you or hurt you; here are the main ways that you, your cards and your score intersect ... (See Credit score)

Co-signing backfire ruins chance to lease an apartment -- A kindhearted gesture backfires for a man who co-signed his sister-in-law's lease: She broke her lease, left a debt, ruined his credit and his ability to rent a new home ... (See Co-sign)

Rule makes privacy statements more meaningful -- Banks can skip mailing their privacy statements as long as they don't share your information in ways that are restricted by law ... (more)

Study: Rewards cards have taken over the market -- Rewards cards increasingly dominate the credit card market, a study by the American Bankers Association shows ... (See Rewards cards)

Q&A: 'Bad Paper' author Jake Halpern roams debt collection's Wild West -- Author Jake Halpern goes undercover as a debt collector and uncovers a world of rich characters, conflicts and unsavory behavior ... (See "Bad Paper")

Best way to track all those reward points? -- How do you make sure you really earned triple points on gas purchases on Card A and the miles you were supposed to when using Card B's online shopping portal? There are no easy answers ... (See Rewards tracking)

Poll: Many cardholders will avoid stores hit by data breaches -- As retail data breaches become more common, nearly half of 985 U.S. cardholders polled by CreditCards.com say they're likely this holiday season to avoid stores that have been hit ... (See Breach poll)

Obama puts federal might behind chip-and-PIN card security -- A White House move to encourage the roll out of chip-and-PIN security strengthens the push for new weapons against data breaches and ID theft ... (See US goes chip-and-PIN)

Credit rehabilitation programs don't do anything you can't do -- The money you give to a credit rehabilitation company could be better spent paying down debt because what those companies do you can do yourself ... (See Credit rehab)

Banks seek rule change to allow more cellphone fraud alerts -- Despite a plague of data breaches, banks fear lawsuits if they send fraud alerts via text messages and cellphone calls, according to an industry group ... (See Fraud alert texts)

Retail cards, the Rodney Dangerfields of credit, deserve respect -- Store cards get a bad rap. But closing even an unused retail card can hurt credit utilization and lower your credit score ... (See Retail cards)

Think about money differently, says 'Smartcuts' author Shane Snow -- Author and entrepreneur Shane Snow says if we inventory our habits and question them, we may find more creative money solutions ... (See Shane Snow)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 15, 2014: Average rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

7 tricks retailers use to get you to spend more -- Learn how to break the spell retailers cast through tricks such as 'nibbling,' end-cap enticements, overly familiar salespeople and 'specials' that aren't ... (See Retail tricks)

Credit reports key to detecting fraud -- If you suspect someone is trying to open a card account in your name, fraud alerts and credit report monitoring can stop thieves before they start stealing ... (See Fraud)

Trip canceled? Your credit card may reimburse you -- How much of your trip's travel insurance is already covered by your credit card? Some cards offer reimbursements on failed travel plans ... (See Trip cancellation)

Compare credit cards' trip cancellation, trip interruption policies -- Does your credit card cover you if you have to cut your vacation short or cancel it all together? Use this chart to compare some of the cards that can ... (See Trip cancellation card policies)

Even with high credit score, some card applicants rejected -- How can someone with an 800+ FICO score be denied a new credit card? It may have to do with rewards card churning but the first thing to do is ask the issuer that is denying your application ... (See Application denied)

Your rights if a merchant charges you but delays shipping -- You ordered your item and your card was charged, but the merchant takes forever to ship. Do you have any rights to demand faster shipping? ... (See Delayed shipping)

How to build an emergency savings account -- If you are contemplating using credit cards for emergencies, here are a few ideas for building an emergency cash fund instead of increasing your debt load ... (See Emergency fund)

Q&A: Rep. Alan Grayson wants changes to 'unfair' frequent flier programs -- The Florida Congressman says airline practices are deceptive and his complaints have sparked an investigation by the Department of Transportation ... (See Devalued rewards)

The good and the bad of credit account 'piggybacking' -- Authorized users can greatly benefit from being tagged in an account with a good credit score. But they can also be hurt if the account is not so great ... (See Piggybacking)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.07 percent -- Oct. 8, 2014: Average rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to fix credit report damage from authorized user status -- A mom added her daughter as an authorized user to her card seven years ago, but then filed for bankruptcy. Her dad asks if it's too late to get the card off his kid's credit report ... (See Credit report)

Fed: Card balances down in August -- Credit card balances decreased at a 0.3 percent annual rate in August, a first after five straight month of rising card debt, the Federal Reserve said Tuesday. ... (See August 2014 Federal G19 report)

The Unverzagt family's triumph over their credit card debit -- Selected as Clients Of The Year by the National Foundation of Credit Counseling, the 13-person Unverzagt family paid off their credit card debt in five years ... (See Debt-free)

Using rewards to buy a new car -- Some credit cards earn you rewards that can be used as an auto down payment, but consider alternatives such as cash-back cards, too ... (See Down payment rewards)

Student loans up 84 percent, while other loans drop -- While the dollar amounts of mortgages and credit cards have dropped since 2008, student loans have climbed, an Experian study has found ... (See Student loans)

Credit Card Tuition Payment Survey 2014 -- Paying tuition by credit cards is possible at most large colleges, says a CreditCards.com survey, but expect to pay a convenience fee that averages 2.62 percent -- enough to wipe out all but the most generous rewards ... (See Tuition payment survey)

2014 Credit Card Tuition Payment Survey data -- Find out whether the four-year college or university you're considering will allow you to make tuition payments by credit cards -- and at what cost ... (See 2014 tuition payment survey data)

Buy now, pay forever: Beware negative option plans -- Free trials that aren't free, automatic renewals and other types of "negative option" offers that end up on charging your credit card ... (See Negative options)

Replacing a credit card after husband's death -- A widow and small-business owner wonders how to replace a credit card with a $36,000 credit limit that had to be closed after her husband died ... (See Card shopping)

Closing joint bank accounts after a breakup -- On joint credit card accounts, problems arise when you carry a balance. Legally, that debt belongs to both of you, even after a breakup ... (See Close joint accounts)

Proposal would extend Military Lending Act to credit cards -- An overhaul of protections for soldiers would have a big impact on credit cards, but the proposal is heading for a fight with the banking industry ... (See Military lending)

Joint truck lease leaves widow in a lurch -- Leasing a new truck with your spouse doesn't seem like it would be a big deal, unless all of a sudden one spouse is left making the payments alone ... (See Lease)

Prescreened card offers don't impact your credit score -- Prequalified or prescreened credit card offers just mean you meet a card issuer's broad criteria. But if you try to take the offer, the real credit check occurs ... (See Prescreened)

Privacy disclosure statements let you opt out of info sharing (sometimes) -- They look like junk mail, but don't toss them. Carefully read your banks' annual privacy notices to see if they share too much info. If they do, opt out -- if you can ... (See Privacy)

Average credit card interest rates rise to 15.07 percent -- Oct. 1, 2014: Average rates on new card offers jumped this week to their highest point in nearly three years, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit reports hold longer memory than issuers -- You let a card go unpaid for years, then finally paid the account off. The odds of the card issuer remembering your behavior aren't as big as the credit bureaus ... (See Unpaid)

Preparing your business for EMV migration -- Follow these tips to get your small business ready for the switch to EMV chip-card technology ... (See Preparing for EMV)

Small businesses slow in converting to EMV card readers -- With a year to go before retailers hit a major deadline for upgrading their credit card machines, experts warn that many are unlikely to complete the switch in time. As a result, they may find themselves suddenly liable for card-related fraud ... (See EMV)

Retailers roll out layaway plans early for 2014 holidays -- Holiday layaway programs are popping up earlier every year. Some retailers are even moving layaway online to vie for consumer business ... (See Layaway 2014)

Study reveals rewards cards' rise in popularity -- Rewards cards now make up a majority of new accounts and spending on cards, practically taking over the market, a bank industry report says ... (See Rewards cards rise)

Getting started with rewards cards -- Rewards credit cards can be a good way to earn free travel or other goodies, but for the beginner, the process may seem overwhelming. We break it down to make it easier to get started ... (See Rewards)

6 ways to thwart pickpockets -- Cybercriminals and data breaches get all the headlines today, but don't forget low-tech, fast-fingered pickpockets are still out there, blending in the crowd, eager to snatch your wallet ... (See Pickpockets)

How to cut your business' foreign wire transfer fee costs -- When selling overseas, you can't make foreign wire transfer costs vanish, but you can negotiate their size, bundle your bills or bake them into your prices ... (See Wire transfers)

Q&A: Kara McGuire cuts through financial clutter in 'Teen Money Manual' -- McGuire's new book, "The Teen Money Manual," covers earning, saving, spending and protecting money in teen-approved prose ... (See Teen Money Manual)

Charged items have a low risk for repossession -- If someone charges your gift on credit, but then doesn't pay the bill, the odds of it being repossessed are slight. But the risk does exist ... (See Repossess)

U.S. Bank refunds $48 million for add-ons -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau extended its crackdown on bank add-on products to U.S. Bank, which charged for credit protection products that consumers didn't always receive ... (See $48 million refund)

Forget the 30 percent credit utilization 'rule' – it's a myth -- When it comes to credit utilization and your credit score, a very low credit-to-borrowing ratio is best, and it's a myth that your score falls off a cliff once you hit 30 percent ... (See 30% myth)

Study: 7 percent of employees have wages garnished -- About 7 percent of workers had wages garnished in 2013, and workers age 35-44 are most likely to endure that stressful and sometimes humiliating fate ... (See Wage garnishment study)

Poll: Asking for better credit card terms pays off -- A CreditCards.com survey finds few credit card customers ask for a lower interest rate or late fee waiver, but those who ask usually succeed ... (See Poll: Just ask )

Average card rates fall to 15.05 percent -- Sept. 24, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers dipped this week for the first time in more than five months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

When new to credit, top rewards cards may be out of reach -- A student about to graduate wants a top-tier travel rewards card to be her first card, but her short credit history may not let her qualify -- yet. Here are the steps to take ... (See Qualifying for rewards)

Putting credit card concierge services to the test -- We tested these free services that come with some rewards cards and found them prompt and courteous. But you forfeit some control when you use them ... (See Concierge)

Credit card debt statistics -- Our team has compiled statistics on total U.S. credit card debt over the years, average credit card debt per cardholder and much more ... (See Credit card debt)

Pay-it-forward givers sometimes provide debt relief -- If someone does something nice for you, instead of returning the favor directly, you help someone else. It's called "paying it forward," and sometimes that help comes in the form of debt relief ... (See Pay it forward)

Am I liable for my business' corporate card debt? -- A small-business owner's responsibility for the company's credit card debt depends partly on the kind of card. Corporate cards and small-business cards treat liability differently ... (See Corporate cards)

Odds slim when suing authorized user for unpaid debt -- You can go after a used-to-be friend in court for not paying you back for charges on your card. You could also ask nicely or write it off ... (See Suing an authorized user)

New industry tools fight credit card fraud -- Card issuers, retailers and other companies are coming up with a host of new tactics to try and stem credit card fraud ... (See Anti-fraud tools)

Where do we bank? Wherever we want, says poll -- A smaller percentage of consumers prefer Internet banking in 2014 compared to the previous year ... (See Banking preferences poll)

Video: Anatomy of a credit card account number -- Those numbers on the front of your credit card? They aren't just random. They give away specific information about your card and where it comes from ... (See Account number )

How leaving a tiny card balance each month affects credit score -- Keeping the balance-to-credit ratio low, paying in full and on time is a better way to get the most from your secured card ... (See $2 balance)

Rates remain stuck at 15.06 percent for fourth week -- Sept. 17, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate Report)

Fed holds course toward rate hike in 2015 -- The Federal Reserve indicated that it will keep interest rates at historic lows for the time being to support the job market, but higher rates are coming ... (See Sept. 17, 2014: Fed holds course)

Don't be 'breakage' -- 7 tips to avoid losing gift card value -- About $1 billion worth of gift cards will go unused in 2014. The industry calls that lost value "breakage" or "spillage" and it means big profits for them and lost money for you ... (See Breakage)

Angrily closing an unused card can hurt credit score -- After applying for a new balance transfer card, only to discover the credit limit too small, he closed the account in anger and now wonders if he acted too fast ... (See Closed card)

6 ways to outsmart data brokers -- You can't stop data brokers from harvesting information on what you buy, how much you make and even how healthy you are. But you can limit what they see ... (See Data)

Using points when holiday award seats are full -- There are a number of creative ways to use credit card points or perks to travel cheaply during busy periods ... (See Holiday travel)

Don't travel? Opt for other business rewards -- If you don't travel much for business or pleasure, there's no point in getting a small-business credit card that specializes in travel rewards. Instead, look for a cash-back card or one that earns rewards you can use ... (See Business rewards)

Mobile payments raise consumer protection worries -- Consumer advocates worry a mobile finance boom will make it easier to snoop on your buying habits, or even clean out your mobile wallet ... (See Mobile protection)

Is a personal line of credit right for you? -- Personal lines of credit are becoming more common for bridging short-term gaps in cash flow. Compare them first with other forms of credit, though ... (See Line of credit)

Be careful with inheritance, spending before bankruptcy filing -- If you're about to file for bankruptcy, what do you do when you know you're about to inherit some money? Can you spend it? ... (See Inheritance)

How to avoid crushing student debt -- Saving early, shopping for colleges, applying for grants and scholarships, and working part-time while in college are a few steps that may ease families’ long-term financial burdens ... (See Minimizing college debt)

Charge a lot? Pay early and often to avoid score damage -- Even if you pay your balance off in full and on time each month, if you are charging close to your credit limit, don't expect a high credit score ... (See Pay often)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.06 percent for 3rd week -- Sept. 10, 2014: Average credit card interest rates held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates average 15.06%)

Best ways to manage a secured card -- Before you apply for a secured card, it's best to know what fees will be charged and whether that card will be the best fit for your credit profile ... (See Secured cards)

Premium cards can move you faster through airport security lines -- Premium travel credit cards can help get fliers to their gates faster but the service is not available in every airport ... (See Faster at airports )

Fed: Card balances rise for a 5th straight month -- Credit card balances increased once again in July, marking the fifth straight month of rising card debt this year, the Federal Reserve said Monday ... (See G.19: Fed says card balances rise)

6 rules for 'card flipping' -- While "flipping" cards to take advantage of promotional deals can lead to free travel and other perks, if you don't play the game correctly, you can trash your credit ... (See Flipping)

Will an ITIN help me get a business card without a personal guarantee? -- Avoiding use of a Social Security number when applying for a small-business credit card is difficult. A few people may be able to use an individual taxpayer identification number, but most Americans can't get one ... (See ITIN)

Cardholder delinquency at lowest level in at least 7 years -- Just 1.16 percent of American cardholders were 90 days delinquent, according to quarterly data from the credit bureau TransUnion ... (See Delinquent cardholders)

Pay by smartphone? Consumers wary, poll says -- A CreditCards.com poll shows consumers are wary of using their cellphone to make payments. But some experts say it's only a matter of time before most do ... (See Mobile payments)

How balance transfer cards help or hurt credit scores -- Moving high-interest card debt to a 0 percent balance transfer card can help your credit scores, but only if you play by the rules ... (See Balance transfers and credit scores)

Video: the road to wage garnishment -- Garnishment is complex -- the rules vary by state, your employment status and your income. But it all starts with a failure to pay bills on time ... (See Wage garnishment)

Fed survey says consumers' card discipline is holding firm -- Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Finances finds that debt burdens remain in check long after the recession's plunge ... (See Survey of Consumer Finances)

Buying a car with a credit card often an uphill fight -- Using a credit card to buy a car could give you consumer protections and perks. But most dealers hate the fees that go with accepting plastic, so you might have to wheel and deal ... (See Buying a car on credit card)

Closing 50 cards without damaging credit score -- With an 800+ FICO score at stake, the account-closing strategy should be to take it slow and shut down the newest and smallest accounts ... (See Too many cards)

CFPB warns card issuers: Reveal costs of 0% promotional offers -- No-interest promotions are costly for credit card users who lose the grace period and must pay interest on new purchases, regulators warned ... (See CFPB 0% offer warning)

Credit card interest rates steady at 15.06 percent -- Sept. 3, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Preparing your cards for overseas travel -- Planning a trip abroad? Make sure your card (and a backup card) has EMV chip technology, no foreign transaction fees and notify your issuer of your plans ... (See Cards abroad)

Payment options budding for legal marijuana businesses -- Eager to profit from the fast-growing, legal cannabis market, some entrepreneurs are offering new payment approaches, but it is too soon to tell how they'll hold up in the long term ... (See Marijuana payments)

Should I 'boost' my frequent flier miles on an upcoming trip? -- Airlines offer travelers the chance to buy miles at a discounted rate, but using cards or shopping portals can be a better value ... (See Miles)

5 credit card questions to ask before traveling overseas -- Before you hit the road, let your card issuer know where and when you'll be traveling, so it doesn't mistake those overseas charges with fraudulent activity. Then, start asking some questions ... (See Travel)

Big buys go on our credit cards, little ones on prepaid cards -- We are more likely to use credit cards for bigger charges, and prepaid cards for smaller purchases, according to a 2013 report by the Federal Reserve System ... (See Card charges)

Wrong account info doesn't absolve debt responsibility -- If your card account lists an incorrect Social Security number as yours, that doesn't give you a free pass on paying any debt you've racked up ... (See Wrong info)

How closing cards and student loans affects FICO scores -- Keeping cards active and paying loans on time is best way to maintain a strong credit score ... (See Credit scores)

Discover, AmEx tie for tops in customer satisfaction -- American Express, the perennial leader in J.D. Power's ranking, shares the top satisfaction score for the first time since the survey started in 2007 ... (See J.D. Power)

Credit card interest rates grow to 15.06 percent -- Aug. 27, 2014: Average credit card interest rates rose this week for the first time in nearly two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Tips for detecting card theft -- Yes, there are crooks out there waiting to steal your card info, but if you're vigilant you can stop them before they do too much damage ... (See Theft)

Poll: Cash or card for $5 purchase? -- The younger you are, the more likely you are to prefer debit or credit cards for payments of under $5, a new CreditCards.com poll shows ... (See Small payments)

Poll: Cash or card for $5 purchase? -- The younger you are, the more likely you are to prefer debit or credit cards for payments of under $5, a new CreditCards.com poll shows ... (See Small payments)

Using prepaid cards to boost rewards -- Some options are drying up, but there are still ways to earn points by buying gift cards and reloadable products ... (See Manufactured spend)

Capital One edits language allowing visits at home or work -- Capital One said it is dropping language in its general purpose card agreements allowing visits at home or work, but keeping those rights in store cards for now ... (See Cap One)

Renting a car? Know whether your card adds insurance -- Renting a car can put your credit card benefits into play, but only if you know what's covered and avoid the exclusions ... (See Insurance)

Can I pass on charge-back fees to my customers? -- When a customer disputes a charge directly with the card issuer, the merchant gets hit with a charge-back fee. Technically, you may be able to pass that on to the customer but it's probably not good business practice ... (See Charge-backs)

Campus cards generate big rewards, but not for cardholders -- Colleges reap lucrative payments from banks in return for granting exclusive rights to the campus debit card business ... (See Campus cards)

What to look for when committing to a campus card -- Regulations have changed how campus debit cards work so proceed with caution when signing up for a new account. ... (See Cards)

8 keys to safe credit, debit card use on campus -- Students who enter college also begin a lifelong journey with credit and debit card use. Here is how to do it safely ... (See Campus card safety)

Seniors vulnerable to credit card fraud -- As people get older, even when they are intellectually still very sharp, it seems to become more difficult for them to determine who to trust and when ... (See Fraud)

Paying card bill on time more important than credit utilization -- Maxing out your card will have a negative effect on your credit score, however, the potentially positive payment history might just be worth it ... (See Maxed out)

Video: Why was my credit card application denied? -- Ever had your credit card application denied? No one likes rejection, but there are a few things you can do to improve your chances of being approved ... (See Rejected)

Federal watchdog slaps auto lender for credit report errors -- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined auto lender First Investors Financial Services Group Inc. for putting errors on thousands of consumers credit reports ... (See Fined)

Interest rates remain locked at 15.03 percent for 7th week -- Aug. 20, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit card life after bankruptcy -- After bankruptcy, issuers will be wary of lending to you. Applying for a secured card is a way to boost your FICO score and show lenders you can be trusted again ... (See Bankruptcy)

6 signs of bad financial advice -- While good sound nuggets of money advice can help you keep money in your pocket, bad advice can leave you digging out of financial hole ... (See Advice)

Are sign-up rewards bonuses seasonal? -- If you're looking to get a points bonanza by signing up for a rewards credit card, timing can be critical. But figuring out when the next big bonus will be available is tricky ... (See Rewards)

How can I change our business's merchant category code? -- The wrong MCC for a hotel can short circuit charging privileges for corporate credit card holders and cost the hotel business. To fix the problem, you need to understand how the codes work ... (See MCC)

Should your small business accept bitcoin? -- Five years into its existence, the virtual currency bitcoin is gaining legitimacy with major U.S. retailers. Small-business owners may find new opportunities in joining them, but should carefully weigh the risks before jumping in ... (See Bitcoin)

Maxed out cards? Don't open another one -- She's maxed out five credit cards and can't pay what she owes on them, but asks if it's OK if she can use the new credit card she got ... (See Maxed out)

NY Fed: Consumer debt up in Q2 -- Credit card loans and other nonhousing consumer debt rose, according to the quarterly analysis by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York ... (See Household debt and credit)

Health care companies turn to 'big data' -- More health care companies purchase intimate details about patients, such as their income and buying habits, and use it to make predictions about their health ... (See Health care data)

Don't expect big score boost when unpaid debt falls off credit report -- Is an old debt, charged off seven years ago, finally falling off your credit report? Sorry, but there's not likely to be a big rise in your score. It could even fall ... (See Old debts)

Credit card APRs remain flat at 15.03 percent -- Aug. 13, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained at 15.03 percent Wednesday for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate Report Aug. 13, 2014)

Understanding credit limits and how they work -- Understanding how charging and repayments work with your first card can save you from financial headaches in the future ... (See Credit limits)

How to spot and prevent medical identity theft -- While credit card breaches have grabbed headlines, fraudsters have been homing in on an even more lucrative source of identity theft: medical records ... (See Medical ID theft)

Returning a gift? The buyer loses the rewards points -- To prevent users from gaming the system, credit card issuers usually dock your rewards points when you return an item, even if it was a gift ... (See Rewards returned)

Credit card complaints Q1 2014: a graphical look -- What are credit card users angry about? Billing disputes, say the complaints filed with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in the first quarter of 2014 ... (See Complaints)

Customers with overdraft protection pay quadruple in fees -- People who opt for overdraft protection on their debit transactions pay a lot more in total fees than other checking account users ... (See Overdraft protection fees)

8 ways to get friends to repay a personal loan -- A pal was in a bind and turned to you for help. Sensing urgency, you agreed, but now you're not getting repaid and your frustration is growing as fast as the excuses ... (See Repay)

Should I pay my business's bills by credit card? -- Using plastic to pay contractors and other recurring business bills can be a good way to rack up rewards points and improve cash flow. But beware it does not become a crutch ... (See Business bills)

Pros and cons of charging automatic payments to a credit card -- Charging automatic payments on a credit card can be beneficial for busy consumers, but it also has its faults. Here are the pros and cons to think about ... (See Automatic payments)

FICO 9 credit score formula lessens impact of medical debt -- People with paid-off debt or medical debts will see scores rise with the new FICO math, while others will receive lower marks ... (See FICO formula)

New to US? A primer on how to create, build a credit history -- If you're new to the U.S., our credit reporting system can be daunting. Here's a primer on how to create and build a credit profile ... (See New credit)

Fed: Card balances rise, keep pace with slow spending growth -- Credit card balances increased a modest 1.3 percent in June marking a fourth month of continued revolving debt growth, the Federal Reserve said Thursday ... (See Card balances rise)

Time-barred debt can still do damage even after 13 years -- Credit checks for mortgages go deep and collection efforts may restart, so even on a debt 13 years old, potential damage can linger ... (See Time-barred debt)

CreditCards.com 2014 retail credit card survey data -- Compare interest rates, rewards and more from this detailed comparison of 61 cards issued by 36 retailers. Part of CreditCards.com's 2014 Retail Store Card Survey ... (See Retail card data)

Retail card survey 2014: APRs higher, rewards complicated -- The cost of borrowing from your favorite retailer has gone up: The average APR on the credit cards from America's largest retailers has climbed more than 2 percentage points to 23.23 percent, according a new CreditCards.com survey. ... (See 2014 retail card survey)

P.F. Chang's names 33 restaurants hit by data breach -- P.F. Chang's China Bistro has named the places and times it suffered a data breach, with 33 of its 210 U.S. restaurants being hit for weeks or months ... (See P.F. Chang's data breach)

Card APRs locked at 15.03 percent for 5th week -- Aug. 6, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers held firm this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report Aug. 6)

Make financial planning as easy as 50/20/30 -- In Alexa von Tobel's best-selling book, "Financially Fearless," she simplifies financial planning with a quick and easy method for spending, saving and having fun ... (See Fearless)

Did Macy's ruin my credit when it closed, reopened my card account? -- A shopper is concerned that her credit score is ruined when Macy's closed her old card after issuing her a new one. Don't worry, Sally says ... (See Closed credit card)

Third-party booking sites trip up hotel rewards -- If your company requires you to book travel through a website such as Expedia or Orbitz, you probably won't be able to earn hotel rewards -- but it never hurts to try ... (See Hotel rewards)

Virtual debt collection lets you negotiate, settle up online -- With a computer or a smartphone, you can review a claim, set up a monthly repayment plan or even cut a debt settlement deal with an algorithm ... (See Virtual collection)

Banks loosening grip on credit cards, says Fed survey -- Banks continue to get more generous with new cards, but subprime applicants still feel a chill, according to the Federal Reserve's quarterly survey of loan officers ... (See Senior loan offiicers' survey)

Americans' choice in noncash payment has become debit cards -- Americans are increasingly opting for electronic payments and debit cards, a study by the Federal Reserve System shows ... (See Noncash payments)

More apartments accepting payment by credit card -- If you could pay your rent with plastic, would you? As more landlords offer that option, renters have to weigh carefully whether it's the best way to pay ... (See Charge rent)

Am I liable for business debt my partner hid? -- Your partner rang up debts before you even joined the firm, and now a collector is calling you. Don't trust the collector -- or your partner. Keep calm and call a lawyer ... (See Debt )

New moves to protect military members from financial fraud -- Federal and state regulators are cracking down and pairing with other groups to offer education, protection and recourse for military service members in the crosshairs of financial fraudsters ... (See Military and fraud)

Fines owed to city exempt from bankruptcy -- In most cases, back taxes, student loans, child support and fines owed to a governmental body are exempt from being discharged in bankruptcy ... (See Fines)

New myth: Closing a credit card account always hurts your score -- It's a new myth that closing a credit card account always hurts your score. The information about the card (good or bad) sticks with you for (seven to 10) years ... (See Myth)

6 strategies to fight 'frugal fatigue' -- When penny pinching starts to hurt, "frugal fatigue" can set in. Here are six strategies to keep your savings on track ... (See Frugal fatigue)

Rates remain at 15.03 percent for 4th week -- July 30, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

4 reasons why college kids need a credit card -- You might want to shelter your college kids from the complicated world of credit (and potential debt) for as long as possible, but at some point they will need to learn the ropes ... (See College)

When is a bankruptcy officially discharged? -- The day you no longer are responsible for debt repayment after you file for bankruptcy depends on whether you filed under Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 ... (See Discharge)

Fed holds course toward higher interest rates -- Zooming economic growth in the second quarter didn't prompt the Federal Reserve to hasten its pace toward an interest rate hike in 2015 ... (See FOMC meeting July 30, 2014)

Will changing my award ticket to Israel cost me? -- Whether it's missile attacks or bad weather, when problems arise that hamper travel, airlines often waive fees to change award tickets ... (See Cancellation fees)

Video: How to dispute errors on your credit report -- It's important to check your credit report periodically to know where you stand and check for errors. If you see something wrong, here's how to get it corrected ... (See Credit report)

Game on: Digital tools teach kids money lessons through play -- Video games that teach kids how to handle money can be effective when they are done right, experts say ... (See Learning via money games)

Shielding business accounts from levy by personal creditors -- If you think a creditor may levy your business account to collect past-due personal debts, there are things you can do. Moving personal assets to a new business account isn't one of them ... (See Levy)

Personal loan consolidation won't help win a mortgage -- In trying to qualify for a mortgage, it probably won't help to consolidate several small personal loans into a big one with a higher rate ... (See Consolidate)

After illness, cards maxed out, turned down for loans -- When illness results in rising card balances and the banks won't give you a loan to pay them off, what paths can you take to get help? ... (See Maxed out cards)

Poll: Americans say they are careful with money -- While Americans say they are careful with their money, they are also saying they have bought more at the store than they meant to ... (See Saving money)

How America pays: Fed study paints big picture of card trends -- How many credit cards are there? How many debit cards? How many checks do we write? The Federal Reserve's new payments study paints a statistical portrait of how we spend ... (See Payments study)

6-year-old mystery debt suddenly appears on credit report? Erase it! -- Just before the statute of limitations expires, a negative item pops up on your credit report and the creditor can't supply an account number ... (See Surprise debt)

9 ways to revive your New Year's financial resolutions -- Have you fallen off the financial wagon with those money resolutions from January? These nine steps will get you back to where you need to be ... (See Resolution revival)

Rates remain at 15.03 percent for second week -- July 23, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Preapproved vs. pre-screened card offers: a big difference -- At first glance, a preapproval letter from a credit issuer can seem like an official invitation to a hot new nightclub. Yet when you arrive, you may be rudely turned away. ... (See Preapproved)

Study: Data breaches pose a greater risk -- It used to be that just 1 in 9 victims of a data breach had the hacked info used against them. Now the odds are 1 in 3, says a new study ... (See Breach)

How couples can pool miles, transfer points for award travel -- Some couples get the same rewards card to double up on points, but find combining them can be tricky. Check out our review of the fees and restrictions for some of the most popular programs ... (See Pooling points)

CFPB expands complaints system to prepaid cards, pawnshops -- The federal consumer watchdog significantly expanded its consumer complaints program to include an array of financial products found outside banks ... (See Complaints)

30 renowned restaurants that don't take credit cards -- Some beloved eateries refuse to take credit cards from patrons, yet still find a way to thrive ... (See 'No credit card' restaurants)

Will a maxed out business card hurt my personal credit? -- Most small-business credit cards are backed by a personal guarantee, so maxing them out may affect your personal credit record. But the bigger question is why you need to do so in the first place ... (See Credit limit)

Tax lien won't impact shared credit card -- When adding someone with a tax lien to your card as an authorized user, that won't open any doors to the Internal Revenue Service ... (See Uncle Sam)

Collectors see less credit card debt -- Credit card holders are less likely to get calls from a debt collector than in the past, because collectors have less card debt to pursue, industry surveys say ... (See Debt)

Credit card interest rates stay put at 15.03 percent -- July 16, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates report)

Fewer Americans are delinquent on their bank cards -- Consumers' bank card delinquencies, already at historically low levels, dropped further in the first quarter of 2014. The American Bankers Association says it's a sign that more people are using cards as transaction tools instead of debt instruments ... (See Card delinquencies)

Rebuilding fiancee's credit one small monthly charge at a time -- In his debut column, former FICO executive Barry Paperno endorses a one-small-monthly-payment plan for an engaged couple ... (See One payment at a time)

Anatomy of a credit card -- With the coming of chip cards, the anatomy of a credit card has become even more crowded. Do you know what all the parts are and what they do? ... (See Card anatomy)

Yay! 3 cards paid off. Now what? -- Paying off card debt brings immeasurable relief, but once the balance is zero, do you keep the cards open or close them immediately? ... (See Paid off)

Small debts can lead to big credit score problems -- Tiny debts, if unpaid, can blossom into huge problems by marring your credit score and dropping obstacles in your financial path ... (See Small debts, big problems)

Eat out often? Stuff yourself with rewards for dining -- If you dine out often, you may as well be earning extra credit card rewards on all those restaurant tabs. To choose the right card, consider the type of reward you want, the cost of the card and other reward-boosting options ... (See Dining rewards)

'Supersurvivors' author: Crises carry profound financial impacts -- In the book 'Supersurvivors,' Lee Daniel Kravetz and his co-author looked at those who survived crises and found virtually every type of traumatic event, even if not primarily financial, has profound financial consequences ... (See Supersurvivors)

How Sam's Club card changes affect business users -- As Sam's Club is transitioning to a new card with new cash-back rewards, it's time for businesses to look at whether to stick with them ... (See Business cash back)

Debt and divorce: 5 steps to make a clean credit split -- Divorce can get ugly if one person doesn't follow debt repayment obligations spelled out in the divorce decree. Take these five steps to increase your chances of a smooth split ... (See Credit split)

Ways to pay off high-interest debt -- Saddled with expensive debt? Instead of looking for new creditors, figure out why you're in debt in the first place and what you can do to lower it ... (See High-interest debt)

8 FAQs about EMV credit cards -- The way you use a credit card is changing as the U.S. catches up with the rest of the world and moves to cards. Here, in Q&A format, is what you need to know about the transition ... (See EMV FAQ)

Rates rise for the second straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- July 9, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers rose Wednesday for the second consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, July 9, 2014)

Bad debt but good income? Your credit can be fixed -- For a price, lenders are willing to forget your old credit sins, as long as you have enough income to prevent any new ones ... (See Income trumps debt)

Small banks, credit unions keep debit rewards programs alive -- Three years after big banks started pulling the plug on debit card rewards programs, many small banks and credit unions are finding surprising success in offering similar rewards to their customers ... (See Debit rewards)

Fed: Card balances extend growth -- Balances on credit cards grew again in May, extending April's record-setting surge, the Federal Reserve said ... (See Consumer credit report, July 8, 2014)

Giving miles or points through a gift registry -- Donating rewards points for that special day sound appealing, but gift registries are a poor deal compared with alternatives ... (See Gifting miles)

Spotting and avoiding hidden hotel fees -- Taking a page from airline and card industries, hotels are raking in billions of dollars a year in unexpected and sometimes hidden fees. Here's how you can steer clear of such costs ... (See Hotel fees)

For co-signers, IRS won't count forgiven debt as income -- If you co-sign on a loan and the borrower defaults, you're on the hook for the debt, but if you reach a settlement, you shouldn't have to pay taxes on the forgiven amount ... (See Taxes and co-signing)

Rates rise to 15.02 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- July 1, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers rose this week for the first time in two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, July 2, 2014)

Debt collector can't back out on deal, if it's in writing -- If a debt collector ignores an agreement for monthly payments and ramps up the threats, you just have to produce the written agreement. You did get it in writing, didn't you? ... (See In writing)

Is a smart-chip card needed when I travel to Europe? -- European countries added EMV chips to credit cards years ago. U.S. issuers are just now catching up with the anti-fraud technology. But is an EMV card a must for European travel? ... (See Chip card)

Compare medical credit cards, loans -- Fewer health-care financing options populate the market since the recession. Compare the terms and conditions of the top medical credit cards and loans before you apply ... (See Compare medical credit cards)

Higher One grows to dominate college debit card market -- A little-known upstart has quickly grown to dominate the campus debit card business, but it is now drawing heat from Congress, regulators ... (See Higher One)

Keeping customers on contracts amid credit card churn -- For a gym owner, data breaches at other merchants are costly. As customers are reissued credit cards with new account numbers, some are dropping their auto-pay agreements ... (See Retaining customers)

Debt reduction consumes millennials' budgets -- Almost 60 percent of millennials' income goes to paying off various types of debt, a study conducted for Wells Fargo shows. ... (See Millennials' budgets)

Should I close card accounts to get a mortgage? -- While mortgage lenders want to minimize their risk, they usually just want credit card accounts paid off, not closed down ... (See Card accounts and mortgages)

Do predictive scores violate your privacy? -- Marketers are combining vast stores of data into predictive scores that help them decide what offers you see -- to the concern of privacy advocates ... (See Predictive scores)

How minimum payments are applied to small balances -- Don't slip up and forget a credit card payment when the balance is almost paid off. A late fee could be larger than your minimum payment ... (See Minimum)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent for 8th week -- June 25, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers remained locked in place this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, June 25, 2014)

How unpaid medical debts affect credit scores -- Ignore unpaid medical bills at your own peril: You may have healed, but your credit score may stay sick for a long time ... (See Medical debt)

10 times NOT to use credit cards -- Credit cards are convenient, but if you want your sanity and pocketbook to survive intact, give the poor things a rest sometimes ... (See 10 times not to use cards)

Biggest financial worries differ for millennials, boomers -- Almost a third of millennials said in a Wells Fargo poll that student loans were their biggest financial worry, while retirement was the biggest concern of baby boomers ... (See Boomers, millennials money worries)

Video: 5 steps to secure smartphone data -- Your smartphone may be lost, stolen or hacked – and along with it goes your financial and personal data. To secure personal data on your smartphone, take these five simple steps ... (See Mobile data security)

Tools, tips for choosing a frequent flier destination -- Award tickets can be hard to come by, but some airlines run specials and have other features to help you book your free trip ... (See Choosing destinations)

New high-end cards boost average cost of annual fee cards -- A surge of pricey new high-fee credit cards on the market boosted the average annual fee to $163, nearly double a year ago ... (See Annual fee cards)

How can I protect my point-of-sale system against security breaches? -- Lax POS security can cost your small business steep fines from credit card issuers if your system is breached. Safe password practices are one of your best defenses ... (See POS security)

Authorized users and charge cards -- Authorized users can't mess up a credit utilization ratio for charge cards, because there's no ratio to upset. However, late pays still damage credit ... (See Charge cards)

GE Capital to refund $225 million to 749,000 customers -- The No. 1 issuer of store credit cards is paying $225 million to 749,000 consumers, with most of the money going to Spanish-speakers excluded from debt relief offers ... (See GE Capital)

P.F. Chang's goes old school to combat fraud -- P.F. Chang's China Bistro restaurants in the U.S. have dusted off old-school manual card readers to use while the chain investigates a potentially large-scale data breach ... (See P.F. Chang's)

0-percent balance transfer after debt in collections? Good luck -- Balance transfer offers aren't lifelines offered to people with bad credit, they're a deal for those who maintain good credit ... (See Balance transfer )

Card rates remain locked at 15.01 percent for 7th week -- June 18, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers didn't budge this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report, June 18, 2014)

Fed shrugs at inflation, holds rates steady -- The Federal Reserve signaled that it will continue the cheap money policy that it has penciled on its calendar through sometime in mid-2015. ... (See FOMC holds rates steady)

Child charged merchandise on mother's account? Return it -- A child who charged merchandise without permission needs to learn a lesson; have her stand by as Mom calls the card company -- and the cops ... (See Unauthorized)

Capital One's rewards chief: Expect a busy travel season -- In a Q&A, Capital One's rewards vice president Amy Lenander discloses it will be a busy summer season, and what the future holds for rewards ... (See Summer rewards)

Do United's frequent-flier changes devalue its travel card? -- United is following other airlines in changing the way you earn miles for paid flights. But it won't necessarily affect credit card points chasers ... (See MileagePlus)

What's your 'real' FICO score? All of the above -- Have you ever wondered why your FICO score varies from one time to the next? Today it's 700, tomorrow it's 720, a month later it's 785! Then the car dealer runs your credit report and informs you that your score is a mere 699! What happened? ... (See 'Real' score)

Poll: As card fraud rises, so do false alarms -- As data breaches soar, so do credit card fraud false alarms that block or flag legitimate credit card transactions, says a new CreditCards.com poll ... (See Fraud false alarm)

Beware of advance-fee credit card scams -- If you see an ad promising that a third party can get you a credit card if you pay a fee to them in advance, pass it right by. Fraudsters use such scams to target people desperate for credit ... (See Advance-fee scams)

Walk away from co-signed loan? No such thing -- Her mother defaults; her kids need student loans. What's a serial co-signer to do? Step No. 1: Put down the pen ... (See Co-sign no more)

CFPB seeks lower-cost ways to serve up mobile banking -- As banking moves to mobile devices, banking regulators want to make sure consumer protections and cost savings go along ... (See Mobile banking)

Tick-tock debt: Law gives 30 days to respond to collector -- When a debt collector makes first contact, federal law gives you the right to seek verification of the debt and to dispute it -- if you act quickly ... (See 30 day debt clock)

The new math: Working through college may not pay off -- If students delay graduating because they're busy working, they may never recover financially -- and may never graduate, either. Here's how to decide whether working as a student is worth it ... (See Working through college)

Weighing work and study: one student's strategy -- Elise Birkner considered working to help pay for her college tuition. But after looking at the numbers, her family realized a part-time job would be too expensive ... (See Balancing work and study)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent for 6th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- June 11, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers held firm this week, stalling at 15.01 percent for the sixth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See APR on new card offers: 15.01% again)

Married women find financial responsibility attractive -- Married women consider financial responsibility sexier than men do, an Experian poll finds. ... (See Marriage and credit)

How young adults can use credit safely -- One of the first lessons of young adulthood: it's much easier to get into debt than get out of it. We look at some of the pitfalls young people fall into with credit and how to avoid them ... (See Young credit)

On-time payments cure the stinkiest credit -- With not much credit or income, a reader's best ally is time and a lengthy series of on-time payments, says Erica ... (See On-time payments)

Are schools putting students’ personal data at risk? -- It's become the norm for school districts to turn over sensitive student data to outside "cloud computing" companies, a practice that has ignited concerns about student privacy ... (See Student data)

Protect your child's data, privacy at school: 5 tips -- As cloud-based technology moves into schools, it puts more data about your children onto remote servers. Here's what to know and do to safeguard that information ... (See Children's data: 5 tips)

How to keep points from a company credit card -- If you've racked up a lot of AmEx points on your company credit card, but are changing jobs, it's worth signing up for a personal card so you can keep your rewards points ... (See AmEx rewards)

Invaders of personal space cause biggest travel headache -- Invasion of personal space tops the list of headache-causing habits of travelers, according to a Capital One survey of 1,000 rewards cardsholders ... (See Annoying travelers)

Fight payment processing fees in medical payments -- Insurance companies and government agencies are increasingly using plastic and virtual credit cards to pay doctors. But practices can request other payment methods that carry lower fees ... (See Medical payments)

Card debt rises sharply in April -- Balances on credit cards soared at a 12.3 percent annual rate in April, extending March's modest gains despite consumers' continued reluctance to open their wallets, according to the Federal Reserve's monthly consumer credit report ... (See Consumer credit report: Card balances rise)

Business loans from banks: 5 ways to boost your approval odds -- Bank lending is picking up for small businesses. But you'll have a much easier time getting a loan if you've taken steps to improve your company's credit profile ahead of time ... (See Business credit)

Talk to lender before letting debt go to a collector -- If you're late on debt payments, don't just let it go to collections. Your original lender has more loan workout options to offer ... (See Let debt go?)

Poll: Millennials know less than others about credit scores -- The 35-and-younger crowd knows less about credit scores than other American adults, a survey from the Consumer Federation of America and VantageScore Solutions shows ... (See Millennials and credit scores)

Rankings for frequent flier programs: 2 surveys, similar results -- Ratings are beginning to take into consideration one of the most important factors to many fliers: reward seat availability. As airline program models shift, so will availability ... (See Frequent flier program rankings)

One mistake results in big credit score drop -- A single mistake on a card bill caused a huge drop in a customer's score and highlights a credit rule: The bigger the score, the harder the fall ... (See One mistake's credit score cost )

Paying, not purchasing, improves credit scores -- If you already carry a balance, don't worry about making new purchases -- just pay down your debt on time and your credit score will rise ... (See Purchases and credit scores)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent for 5th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- June 4, 2014: Interest rates on new card offers remained at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See weekly rate report 15 percent)

When you can, can't transfer rewards points -- Shifting points between programs often comes with restrictions. But outright transfers are not the only way to get more options from your points ... (See Transfer points)

Should I try crowdfunding or a loan for my startup? -- Crowdfunding and bank loans are both challenging to land for new businesses. A third option may make more sense ... (See Startup funding)

SBA disaster loans -- not just for business -- When disaster strikes, SBA loans may help -- even if you're a consumer. But it helps to know what to expect ... (See Disaster loans)

Card rates stuck while others drop -- Failure to shop around may be contributing to high credit card interest rates ... (See Card rates stuck)

Mom piggybacked on realty agent's troubled account. What now? -- A real estate agent convinced an elderly woman to sign on to the agent's credit card account to build credit history. But now the agent is bankrupt and collections agents are calling. How can the woman's daughter help? ... (See Piggybacking)

MasterCard expands fraud protection -- MasterCard is extending its zero-liability policy to more card transactions and dropping restrictions on who is eligible -- putting pressure on Visa to follow suit ... (See Fraud)

Thanks, Sis, but I'm ready for my own card now -- A man who got his sister's help to raise his score is ready to graduate to credit on his own -- taking his remaining debt with him via balance transfer ... (See Balance transfer)

Rates hold steady at 15.01 percent for fourth week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 29, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

FTC calls for data broker regulation -- Depending on your income, habits, health and ethnicity, data brokers may label you an Urban Scramble, Rural Everlasting, Truckin' & Stylin', Bible Lifestyle or Plus-Size Apparel ... (See FTC study)

Billed before credit card is activated? ID theft danger! -- If you receive a credit card statement before you received and activated the card, you need to act quickly. You may be a victim of fraud ... (See ID theft)

Avoid companions' checked-bag fees with wise card use -- Many people have found a way around checked-bag fees but you have to know where to look to get the most bag for your buck ... (See Free bags)

6 fears that keep people from financial advice -- Nearly half of Americans don't know who to trust for financial advice. Here are wise ways to get over that and other fears ... (See 6 financial fears)

Can businesses charge large test payments? -- Gas stations and restaurants add temporary "holds" on credit card bills until they know the final balance, but other merchants should avoid this tactic ... (See Test charges)

Mom opened checking, credit accounts in my name, left a mess -- Fraud, even by a family member, is a crime that should be reported in order for you to start the process of salvaging your credit ... (See Family fraud)

'Dragnet Nation' author Julia Angwin: May I have my privacy back? -- The Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter's book investigates who is watching us online, what they're doing with the data (including selling it), and why it matters. ... (See 'Dragnet Nation')

Move beyond the starter card with a personal loan -- A perfect payment record on a starter credit card won't earn great rewards. Try a personal loan at the same bank that offers the rewards card you want ... (See Starter card)

4 ways crooks cash in on your personal and financial data -- You've heard about data thieves, but have you wondered what they do with it once it's stolen? Here's how crooks convert your info to their cash ... (See Cashing in data)

Rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 21, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers didn't budge for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, May 21, 2014: APRs stalled at 15.01%)

Lower credit limit surprise nearly spoils a sale -- The checkout counter is a bad place to find out your card's credit limit has been dropped to $100. Good payment habits should prevent such surprises ... (See Credit limit)

CFPB: Credit scores for medical debt are unfair -- Study by consumer watchdog agency finds that medical debt collection weighs too heavily on people's credit scores ... (See Medical debt and credit scores)

Survey: Lack of education goes with credit card debt -- Households without credit card debt tend to be more educated than those with credit card debt, according to a study by public policy organization Demos ... (See Education and card debt)

Sign up, max out, cancel, repeat: Rewarding, but dangerous to credit? -- Some frequent flier mileage chasers cancel cards as soon as they've hit their initial spending targets to earn rewards. But the strategy carries risk ... (See Sign-up strategy)

Kit Yarrow Q & A: Decoding the hidden cues that make you buy -- Retailers use many cues to lure consumers into buying items. In her book, 'Decoding the New Consumer Mind,' psychologist and consumer researcher Kit Yarrow reveals how to find these budget bombs ... (See Decoding)

Is employee responsible for boss's default? -- If a small business owner defaults on debt on a company credit card she issued to a former employee, is the worker responsible for the debt? ... (See Boss's debt)

Debt settlement vs. credit counseling: similar aims, different means -- Both debt settlement companies and credit counselors run ads offering help in getting out of debt. But their tactics are very different ... (See Debt reduction)

Law caps service members' rates on old debt, not new -- Put down the credit card, soldier. The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act lowers interest rates only on balances incurred before going on active duty ... (See Military)

How to stop sending mixed money messages to your kids -- A substantial number of parents admit to bribing their kids for good behavior or 'borrowing' from their piggy banks. Here's how to set a better example ... (See Mixed messages)

Get that debt settlement offer in writing -- An offer to settle old debt for a 10th of what's owed may soun good, but get it in writing, and make sure you understand the consequences ... (See Old debt)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- May 14, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate survey May 14, 2014)

Don't just transfer a balance, pay it down -- It's worthwhile to transfer a balance if the only other card is a dud -- but do the math and have a plan to whittle that balance down ... (See Balance transfer)

How to nab scarce award flights -- Airlines and card companies love to tout the ease of racking up miles, but when it comes to spending them, it's often not so easy. Advance planning and flexibility help ... (See Spending miles)

Making 0% cards work for your small business -- If your mailbox is filling up with 0-percent-interest credit card offers, they could be a good source of small-business financing. But you have to use these balance-transfer deals strategically, say experts, or you could run into trouble ... (See No-interest credit)

Prepaid debit cards: With all the scams, are they worth it? -- Prepaid debit cards fill an important financial need for people without traditional bank accounts, but they have fewer protections and are prone to scams ... (See Prepaid debit scams)

Who goes to jail for fraudulent credit card use? -- Businesses that accept stolen credit card information may be on the hook for a refund. But the thief is the one who broke the law -- and cardholders need to take steps to prevent further damage ... (See ID theft)

How to rebuild credit in 5 steps -- Don't think of rebuilding bad credit as a race -- slow and steady changes are needed, and time and patience are your allies ... (See Gradual growth)

Fighting garnishment of low wages for medical debt -- A Washington state resident being pursued by collectors for an overdue medical bill can stop attempts to garnish her wages because her earnings are below a legal threshold ... (See Garnish)

Authorized user backfire hurts son's credit score -- Adding their son as authorized user backfired after they both lost their jobs. Now his plan to buy a house is in jeopardy ... (See Authorized user backfire)

5 reasons your gift card isn't working -- While gift cards are convenient for buying all kinds of goods and services, their funds can be subject to holds for a variety of reasons. Knowing about potential roadblocks in advance can help you avoid embarrassing situations at checkout ... (See Gift card holds)

How quickly is my card payment posted? -- It can take a few days for your card issuer to post your payment -- and for someone with a low-limit card, that can matter a lot ... (See Payment posting)

Banks expect credit to ease near pre-recession levels -- A Fed survey of senior loan officers finds bankers expect a hefty increase in credit card growth, the first big jump since the Great Recession ... (See Card lending easing)

Credit card balances post spring growth -- Card debt rose in March for the first time in 2014, as consumer spending surged ... (See consumer spending increase 2014)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 15.01 percent -- May 7, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates averaged higher)

Judgment-proof debtors have an imperfect shield -- If you are poor enough, a court judgment for debt has little threat. You're "judgment-proof," with wages and belongings shielded by law from collectors -- but that does not mean you can relax ... (See Judgment-proof debtors)

Supercharging rewards from online travel agencies -- Online travel agencies such as Orbitz and Expedia offer rewards cards. Whether they're right for you depends on your spending and travel patterns ... (See Travel rewards)

Settling a debt after a judgment -- Even after a judgment is entered against you, it is still possible to settle a debt for less than the court-determined amount -- maybe much less ... (See Settling debt after judgment)

Debt judgment may trigger bankruptcy -- Bankruptcy shields you from debt collectors, but comes with serious consequences that must be weighed ... (See Debt judgments and bankruptcy)

Fighting a default judgment for debt -- In most debt judgments, consumers never got their day in court. Often these one-sided judgments can be erased, giving the debtor another chance to fight the charges ... (See Fighting a debt judgment)

Court judgments for debt: Your options after the gavel -- A court judgment for debt can lead to seizure of wages and property, but there are steps to protect yourself after the decision comes down ... (See Judgments for debt: after the gavel)

Americans rely less on credit cards, says Gallup survey -- Almost a third of Americans don't have a credit card, the most since Gallup began conducting surveys on the issue in 2001 ... (See Rely less on credit cards)

Compare rewards cards for business gas spending -- If your business buys gasoline, why not be rewarded? Business credit cards and specialized fleet cards both offer programs to reward and track fuel purchases ... (See Gas rewards)

They divorced, he died, she's stuck with his $40,000 student loan -- Even though they were divorced before his death, she co-signed on his $40,000 student loan, which means she's asked to repay. What are her options? ... (See Student loans and death)

Getting teens to see plastic cards aren't 'invisible money' -- It's tough to decide when a child is ready to graduate to having a debit or credit card. One test: Can they see that the money they spend is real? ... (See Invisible money)

There ain't no cure for the bad co-signer credit score blues -- When you co-sign, you agree to take on responsibility for the loan -- and the credit damage that results if it's allowed to go into default ... (See Co-signer credit score blues)

Randy Wayne White 'Bone Deep' -- Randy Wayne White used to spend 300 days a year on a fishing boat, but these days he's launching books. "Bone Deep," which debuted in March 2014, is the 21st novel featuring the adventures of his Floridian fictional creation, Doc Rivers ... (See "Bone Deep")

Rate survey: Credit card APRs linger at 15 percent -- April 30, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 30, 2014, rate report)

Fed takes poor GDP in stride, leaves interest rates outlook unchanged -- The Federal Reserve maintained its course toward higher interest rates in 2015, downplaying a poor first-quarter showing by the economy ... (See Federal Reserve)

During Chapter 13 bankruptcy, secured cards tough to get -- Banks may reject your credit card application, even for a secured card, while you're under the strict money diet imposed by a Chapter 13 bankruptcy ... (See Secured card)

Debt rises by 5 percent in top 20 cities -- A study by the credit bureau Experian shows borrowing is on the rise again in 19 of the 20 biggest U.S. cities, with Dallas, Houston leading the way ... (See Average debt)

Applying for a credit card? Your odds for approval -- Thinking of applying for a card? The odds of having your application approved depend on the issuer, the card and your credit score ... (See Application approval odds)

Rewards card switch: from fee to no-fee -- If your rewards card's fee is too high, it's time to look for alternatives. Switching may put a temporary dent in your credit score but it's usually more important to get a card that fits your needs ... (See Going no-fee)

Small-business bank loans become a bit easier to get -- Bankers are becoming a bit more accommodating to small businesses, new research shows, but they're still hard, so know all your choices ... (See Bank loans)

Prepaying principal, paying ahead not the same -- Your auto lender would probably prefer you just pay ahead, since that won't cost them anything. But if you want to lower your costs, prepay the principal ... (See Prepaying)

Divorced woman still cleaning up ex's financial mess -- Five years after their breakup, a woman is trying to see if there's a way to undo the financial damage her ex dumped on her and she unwisely kept ... (See Ex's mess)

Poll: Americans say they'd rather save than spend -- An April 2014 Gallup poll shows that Americans state they would rather save than spend, a desire that has increased for the third year. ... (See Save vs. spend poll )

Big bill, small credit limit: Know your options -- In one hand is a big bill. In the other, an offer for a credit card with a 0 percent interest rate, but a too-small credit limit. They're not the only choices, Jane says ... (See Credit limit)

Rate survey: APRs hold steady at 15 percent -- April 23, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers were unchanged at 15 percent this week after dipping the previous week ... (See April 23, 2014 rate report)

7 signs you need to cash in your rewards now -- It can be tempting to stockpile reward points, envisioning a big vacation someday paid for with the trove of points you’ve gradually been accumulating. But the reality of miles and points is that they become less valuable with time ... (See Cash in rewards)

Should I pay in full, even after a debt settlement? -- If it's been years since the settlement, and the credit damage is mostly behind you, it's best just to let go. Focus on what's ahead, not what's behind you ... (See Settled)

Cashless toll roads and rental cars: 6 tips -- If you ever find yourself stuck in a rental car on an e-toll road with no cash option, you have more choices than get gouged now or gouged later ... (See E-toll rental tips)

Banks' travel rewards search engines fare well in find-a-flight test -- Whether you're using credit card rewards points or cash, you may find the best flight deals by going through card issuers' travel search engines ... (See Travel search )

Meeting with your banker to talk small business loans -- Your banker should be a key member of your advisory team. To make your business more loan-ready, you will need your banker's input on what the bank wants to see when it evaluates a loan application ... (See Loan meeting)

Taking over parents' finances: first steps -- Don't wait until it's too late, get information now and make necessary changes while they still have the capacity and legal authority to do so ... (See Parents' finances)

'When She Makes More' looks at female breadwinners -- Author Farnoosh Torabi plumbs the emotional and financial complexities that pop up when women out-earn their male counterparts ... (See 'She Makes More')

Foreign boyfriend's check-cashing request sounds like fraud -- The Internet has created an industry of romantic swindlers whose sole purpose is to rob you by making you think with your misplaced heart ... (See Swindler)

Bankers predict an increase in credit-line requests -- A poll of risk managers at banks in the United States and Canada shows most believe credit-line increase requests will rise in 2014 ... (See Credit line survey)

Debt settlement vs. bankruptcy: Which damages credit score worse? -- Debt settlement means the creditor gets at least something back, so it damages credit scores less than bankruptcy, which wipes out debt ... (See Credit damage)

Wal-Mart store card switch gives consumers reason to compare -- If you're a Wal-Mart or Sam's Club co-branded credit card holder, you're about to get a new credit card -- and with it comes a new reason to check up on the benefits of holding a co-branded card. ... (See Wal-Mart card switch)

Rate survey: Portfolio shift brings down average APR -- April 16, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers dipped this week because of a change in the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, April 16: APRs slip to 15%)

YOLO: When is it OK to splurge? -- You max out your 401(k), never carry a card balance and have an emergency fund. When is it OK to blow the budget on a you-only-live-once moment? ... (See YOLO)

How to perform a credit transfusion on your spouse -- It's a tricky and dangerous procedure, but it's possible: The spouse with good credit can absorb the bad-credit person's debt by balance transfer ... (See Credit transfusion)

Learn the reward points double-transfer trick -- You may know your rewards program has transfer partners that let you shift points. But your partner partners have partners, too, so you can double-transfer to get the program you really want -- though at a lower rate ... (See Double transfer)

Accepting credit card orders by phone: a new-business owner's guide -- For a new restaurant owner concerned about accepting credit cards for call-in orders, a merchant processing account may not be the best thing -- at least not in the beginning ... (See Phone payments)

For MoneySavingMom blogger, fulfillment, frugality go together -- Successful blogger Crystal Paine offers an adjustment strategy for the too-tired, too-stressed woman whose supermom outfit has become too tight ... (See Crystal Paine)

Lowering your interest rate: HELOC vs. 0% credit card -- Transferring credit card debt to a lower-interest card or home equity line of credit may help you become debt free faster -- if you're careful ... (See Balance transfer)

Got a medical card, but can't afford the procedure -- A dentist suggested financing a procedure with a medical card and then charged upfront; now the patient wants to cancel ... (See Cancel medical debt)

Bank of America to refund $727 million in add-on fees -- Bank of America becomes the fifth card-issuing bank to pay a hefty fine for over-hyping debt protection and credit monitoring services ... (See Refund)

Rates rise to 15.02 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 9, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 9, 2014: Average APR rises to 15.02%)

Ah, to be young and have a near-perfect credit score -- A 23-year-old has a 772 FICO score and a $45,000 credit limit spread over four credit cards. Will another card move him closer to financial perfection? ... (See Young credit)

Paying your tax bill with prepaid cards -- Popular Vanilla Reloads are becoming harder to find, but credit card rewards seekers still have options to avoid hefty tax-payment card fees ... (See Tax points)

Secure, or not? Assess the risk before sending credit card info -- We asked Internet security experts to rate the common methods of sending credit card information to see which pose the greatest risks ... (See Data risk)

Card debt falls in February -- Credit card users cut their balances sharply in February 2014, even as personal income rose, says the Federal Reserve's monthly consumer credit report ... (See Fed consumer credit report)

Debt near the bottom of parents' financial concerns -- America's parents worry more about setting a good financial example for their kids than taking on too much debt, T. Rowe Price's 6th annual 'Parents, Kids and Money' survey shows ... (See Parents, kids and money survey)

How can I build business credit? -- Building a credit record for your small business that's separate from your personal credit is a gradual process. You can take steps to get started while the business grows ... (See Separate business credit)

Pros and cons of becoming a first-time landlord -- If you're eyeing a property as a potential rental, do the math to see if it will make a profit, but also decide whether you want to do what a landlord does ... (See Landlord)

Author Steve Bucci: Take the slow, steady road to good credit -- "Credit Repair Kit for Dummies" author Steve Bucci says there's no magic wand to a quick credit fix nor is there a credit repair fairy ... (See Credit repair )

Take care before giving a debt collector your bank account information -- In some cases, debt settlement may be the right option, but verify first that you owe the debt, and then dole out the dough yourself ... (See Bank account)

You don't have to wait for a zero-balance statement to avoid interest -- Caution is good, but you don't have to wait for a zero-balance statement to use a credit card again. Paying on time avoids interest charges ... (See Zero balance)

Survey: Bad financial habits creeping back -- A U.S. poll shows that fewer adults have a budget and more adults are increasing their spending. ... (See Fewer budget, more spending)

Rates remain at 15.01 percent for 7th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 2, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained locked at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the seventh consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See weekly rate report)

Best card to send with kids to Europe -- His two 20-year-olds head to study abroad this fall, armed only with their debit cards. Dad wants to know if he get supply them with a credit card, too ... (See EMV)

10 tips for dealing with debt collectors, collection -- First, pull your head out of the sand. Next, educate yourself on your rights and on who to reach out to for help or to register a complaint ... (See Debt collection tips)

Don't be fooled into falling for these 8 scams -- Here's the lowdown on eight hot scams, cons and swindles that criminals are employing to separate you from your money, along with tips for avoiding them ... (See 8 hot scams)

Finding the best rewards card for frequent Saudi Arabia travel -- For a businessman who will be traveling to Saudi Arabia a lot for work, the advice is similar to that for other travelers: decide on an airline and hotel chain that fit your needs, then find a credit card tied to them. And don't forget about fees ... (See Saudi Arabia travel)

Is it OK for merchants to accept credit cards from minors? -- If a parent has formally authorized a minor to use a credit card, accepting it isn't a problem. But getting some reassurances in writing is best practice ... (See Cards and minors)

Business card use rises in 2013 -- Small-business owners reported increased card use in 2013, according to a National Small Business Association study ... (See Business card use)

Wal-Mart sues Visa over swipe fees -- Wal-Mart has sued Visa for anticompetitive practices, targeting Visa's interchange fees or "swipe fees" that help support credit card rewards programs and cash-back deals for cardholder ... (See Wal-Mart sues Visa)

3 who bounced back from bankruptcy to millionaires -- Bouncing back after a bankruptcy may not be easy, but it can be done. The most prosperous of the rebounders analyze their past shortcomings, chart a better route, then march full force into the future ... (See Bankruptcy to millionaire)

On disability, facing interest rate creep -- She was on her card's hardship plan to keep her APR low, but then the company changed ownership and her rates keep rising. Is there any recourse? ... (See Hardship rate)

Shifting debt from credit cards through a mortgage refi -- Paying off credit cards via a home refinance could change your credit utilization and help your credit score, if you don't go charging again ... (See Refis and credit scores)

Companion tickets: the reward card perk that's not always so rewarding -- Want to bring a friend when you travel? The right travel card may help, but companion ticket programs are full of restrictions ... (See Compare companion tickets)

Card interest rates remain locked at 15.01 percent -- March 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Interest rates locked)

Healing your inner financial child -- If you’ve been struggling to break certain financial habits, the problem may not be your budget, but rather your childhood ... (See Habits)

Can I use my credit card after bankruptcy? -- There is no specific amount of time you have to wait before you can start charging again after bankruptcy. In fact, it can even help rebuild your credit ... (See Bankruptcy)

Winning the credit 'Game of Thrones' -- Managing your credit cards can sometimes feel like waging an epic battle with unseen enemies on all sides -- sort of like the characters on "Game of Thrones" ... (See Games)

Should I ditch my checking account to earn credit card rewards? -- It can be tempting when a credit card issuer offers extra reward points for opening a checking account, but watch out for hidden costs and credit score dings before you make the jump ... (See Checking)

Not all free credit scores are created equal -- More than 25 million credit cardholders now have regular access to a credit score through their credit card issuers, but that free score may not be the comprehensive, tell-all number you think it is. ... (See Scores)

How soon should retailers switch to EMV? -- The heat is on for merchants to adopt terminals that will read smart-chip cards. But with many small firms facing rising costs from all sides, it may pay to wait to upgrade ... (See EMV)

Clean up credit before finding new apartment -- When trying for a new lease, the marks on your credit left by an eviction are harder to remove than stains on an old carpet ... (See Apartment lease)

Churning crackdown worries credit card rewards chasers -- A move by American Express to crack down on people who sign up for the same credit card repeatedly is causing alarm among credit card churners, who see the decision as the latest sign that harvesting cards for miles and points is becoming less lucrative ... (See Churning)

Assets online? Plan your estate for the digital age -- Financial accounts, credit card rewards and even treasured photos are often online-only these days. Take these steps to help an heir to find them, and pay your bills to boot ... (See Digital estate plan)

Pay the whole debt or pay part: Which helps credit score more? -- Much of the credit score damage was already done back when you defaulted, but paying it off can make you look better to other lenders ... (See Partial payment)

What financial advice do millennials say they need? -- Millennials are confident about their financial knowledge, but they want advice about savings, budgeting and credit cards in particular ... (See Millennials and financial advice)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.01 percent -- March 19, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.01 percent Wednesday for the fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Fed holds course toward higher interest rates -- In the first policy meeting under its new leader, the Federal Reserve affirmed that short-term interest rates will begin rising next year ... (See FOMC meeting)

Does more 'stuff' really make you happy? -- Buying stuff gives you a quick high, but that doesn't last for long, says "Stuffocation" author James Wallman. By focusing your time and money resources on experiences instead, you’ll find joy while also avoiding depressing debt. ... (See Stuff)

Student loan payments choking new grad -- With student loan payments taking up 57 percent of her income, a new grad ponders defaulting as she can't see how she can keep up ... (See Default)

What interest rate increases will cost cardholders -- Consumers will pay up to $192 million more a month on their credit card balances starting this month, according to Federal Reserve data ... (See Rising card rates)

Finding the best rewards card for airline and hotel upgrades -- There have been some important changes in recent years in how airlines handle upgrades. That, of course, changes the calculation for what kind of card you should have in your wallet if upgrades are important to you ... (See VIP seats)

Can non-immigrants get business credit without an SSN? -- Most loans and credit cards are going to ask you for a Social Security number at some point in the application process, but if you are adamant about not giving it out there are a few options ... (See SSN-free)

Medical card pays for endorsements -- GE Capital's CareCredit card pays dozens of professional societies to help market its high-rate health care credit card, raising questions that could cloud the doctor-patient relationship ... (See Medical card endorsements)

Who's responsible for kids' unauthorized card charges? -- You're not responsible for unauthorized purchases, but when the unauthorized purchaser is right under your own roof, things can get fuzzy ... (See Unauthorized kids)

Stop paying your late mother's credit card debt -- Some advice for a daughter who has continued to pay her deceased mom's card bills for five years, and still owes $3,000: Stop. Now ... (See Death and debt)

Familiar fraud: When family and friends steal your identity -- When identity fraud victims know their imposters, it can rip apart relationships as it ruins finances, making it a tough crime to overcome ... (See Familiar fraud)

Paying all you can vs. leaving a cushion in savings -- If there's enough money to make a big dent in your card debt but not enough to pay it off, you have choices to make, and the right one depends on your goals ... (See Paying vs. savings)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 15.01 percent -- March 12, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Time to refinance small-business debt? Five questions to ask -- Many entrepreneurs got the cold shoulder from their banks during the credit crunch and turned to other, high-interest lenders or credit cards instead. Now could be a good time to forget about past snubs and try to get a bank loan to refinance costly debts ... (See Refinance business debt)

Don't default on a stipulated judgment -- When you agree to pay a creditor a reduced, but fixed amount each month to satisfy an old debt and then default, you risk having to pay the full balance ... (See Stipulated judgment)

Card fees, not interest, dominate revenue -- Credit card fees, and not interest, continued to dominate card issuers' revenue in 2013. ... (See Card fees)

Switching to a new card from the same bank -- An issuer may conduct a hard pull on your credit record if you apply for a new card, even if you already have a card with that bank. But it's probably worth it if the card is a better fit ... (See Credit)

Q&A with security expert Slava Gomzin on the safest way to pay -- What's being done to protect cardholders at checkout -- and what can we do in the meantime to protect ourselves? We asked Slava Gomzin, security and payments technologist at Hewlett-Packard and author of "Hacking Point of Sale" ... (See Slava Gomzin)

Can personal credit suffer due to old business debt? -- Your loan contract will determine whether an old business debt can be held against you, in court and on your personal credit ... (See Business debt, personal credit)

Card debt falls in January -- Card balances reversed direction and fell in January, as consumers got hit by harsh weather and expiring jobless benefits ... (See Card debt falls)

Property liens shouldn't be a surprise -- Property liens can be an effective way to get repayment on debts owed, but they're not easy to get and often involve a court judgment ... (See Lien)

9 signs your spouse is a financial bully -- Many couples argue over money, but what if your spouse takes away your credit cards or demands you turn over your paycheck? Watch out: you might be married to a financial bully ... (See Bully)

Students seek financial transparency from college administrators -- Students from 20 colleges and universities across the county delivered letters to their school administrators Thursday asking for greater transparency about school partnerships with financial institutions ... (See students seek transparency )

Too late for a refund? Return assistance programs may help -- Credit card return assistance programs extend the window for refunds on products you've bought with the card. But you'll find lots of exclusions in the fine print ... (See Return assistance)

Help! Mom trashed my credit -- It's tough to find that a card you never signed up for is dragging down your credit and chances for employment, but if you were just an authorized user, you'll get off easy ... (See Credit)

Credit card interest rates hold at 15.01 percent -- March 5, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 15.01 Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Personal finance tops dreaded talks -- Wells Fargo poll shows that people hate talking about personal finances more than death, politics or religion. ... (See Personal finance)

Son uses dad's card after he dies -- Believing the card he shared with his dad was a joint account, the son kept using the card after Dad's death. But he was just an authorized user, so who's to pay the bill? ... (See Debt)

Cards with free credit scores -- A growing number of cards give you a no-cost way to watch the number crucial to your financial health ... (See Free credit scores)

Savings clubs: Not just for Christmas anymore -- Small banks and credit unions have extended the Christmas Club tradition to encourage savings for both good times and bad ... (See Savings clubs)

Delta changes award program; should you change your card? -- Delta's announcement that it will change the way flying customers earn miles doesn't affect how you earn on co-branded credit cards. Still, it may be worth reconsidering your rewards card strategy ... (See SkyMiles)

Q&A: Author C.J. Box takes his outside chance at success -- With "Stone Cold," Box's 14th novel featuring Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett, he and his wife can cut their last ties to the travel business ... (See C.J. Box)

Getting a business card without a Social Security number -- For foreign nationals setting up shop in the U.S., it's not easy to get a business credit card. Most applications require a Social Security number, but there are a few exceptions ... (See SSN-free)

If you fly with a pet, can you earn frequent flier miles? -- Flying with furry companions is complex, with airlines' rewards rules and countries' policies overlapping. Earning mileage points for flying with Fido is rare. ... (See Pet miles)

Disabled? How to discharge federal student loans -- After taking out student loans to earn a degree, medical issues kept her from pursuing her career. Now 65, she owes big, and a discharge may be her best bet. Here's how to win one ... (See Discharge)

CFPB calls for free credit scores -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has urged credit card issuers to make credit scores available to customers for free ... (See Consumers want free credit scores)

If authorized user goes bankrupt, account holder's credit not at risk -- Granting authorized user status to a partner who later goes bankrupt won't risk your credit, but watch out for any joint accounts ... (See Partner's credit)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.01 percent -- Feb. 26, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

13 luxe airport lounges you can access with a credit card -- Most airport lounges are open only to first- or business-class fliers, elite members of frequent-flier programs, or to those willing to pay up to $70 for a day pass. But there’s another way in: having the right credit card in your wallet ... (See Luxurious airport lounges)

Making sure bad debts are gone from your credit report -- Still paying a collector for an old debt? It should eventually fall off your credit report. But take care or it could linger longer ... (See Old debts and credit reports)

How 'jamming' cleans your credit report -- temporarily -- The scam called jamming throws a wrench into a beleaguered credit report dispute process, making it harder for the big three credit bureaus to keep up with legitimate disputes ... (See Jamming)

Complain and win: 4 tips for calling credit card customer service -- If you have a problem with your card, don't let endless options and hold music deter you. With a little knowledge and the right attitude, you can get results ... (See Service)

Must cards keep paying out at their original reward level? -- Cardholder agreements give issuers free rein to change reward programs. But if you think there's been an error, there are a few things you can do ... (See Shrinking rewards)

Attorney General Holder calls for national data breach disclosure law -- U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said Congress should require businesses to tell customers promptly after hackers steal information ... (See data breaches national policy)

Cut personal credit ties to a failing business -- You're president, but not the owner, of a failing business, but the company cards are in your name? Close those cards -- pronto ... (See Credit risk at business failure)

How to keep but not go broke with expensive friends -- Unless you want them to visit you in the poorhouse, understand why you want to match your high-spending pals dollar for dollar, then find less-expensive alternatives ... (See Expensive friends)

Old debts come back to life with 1099-C -- When an old, unpaid debt gets written off, chances are that you'll receive a 1099-C cancellation of debt notice, meaning Uncle Sam wants his cut ... (See 1099-C)

Which travel card perk is the most popular? -- A CreditCards.com consumer survey finds free checked bags are the top travel benefit offered by credit cards, beating out rental car insurance, travel insurance, priority boarding and airport lounge access ... (See Perks)

'Jamming' cleans your credit -- temporarily -- Some credit repair clinics clog the dispute system with bogus paperwork, challenging everything on clients' credit reports. The tactic works -- temporarily ... (See Jamming scam)

Steps to building your credit before 1st auto loan -- A newcomer to credit, even someone who's handled credit well so far, won't have a great score. Additional work is need to get a good first auto loan ... (See 1st auto loan)

Credit card interest rates tick up to 15.01% -- Feb. 19, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Feb. 19, 2014 rate report)

Poll: Who Americans blame for data breaches -- As data breaches mount and put personal information at risk, a poll finds most Americans lay the blame on laxness by retailers ... (See Data breach blame)

GAO urges changes in college-provided debit cards -- A federal report questions the fairness of a new breed of college-provided debit cards and urges transparency on the deals -- and the fees charged students ... (See College debit cards)

Include all debts in a management plan -- When going into a formal debt management plan from a credit counseling agency, you can't keep several credit card accounts open. That defeats the purpose of getting out of debt ... (See DMP)

Capital One backs away from invasive debt collection policy -- Capital One will modify controversial terms saying it can visit cardholders, and denied spoofing its number on caller ID systems ... (See Capital One debt collections)

Households are borrowing money again -- A new federal report shows U.S. consumers are steadily building debt once again, with the end of 2013 seeing the first annual increase in debt since the Great Recession ... (See Consumer debt increases)

Surprise! Many credit card agreements allow repossession -- An analysis of the federal database of credit cards finds dozens include a 'security interest' clause that leaves the door open to the repo man ... (See Repossession)

Reaping miles and points with everyday spending -- Lucrative sign-up bonuses are tempting but chasing them can be exhausting and fraught with credit risks. There are other ways to boost your credit card rewards ... (See Earn more)

Can my business add a surcharge for card-paying customers? -- Swipe fees can weigh on a business's bottom line. But examine your business contracts and state law before passing them on to customers who pay with debit or credit cards ... (See Surcharges)

Military families remain easy prey for ID theft -- A move to strip Social Security numbers from military IDs is underway, but millions of old cards will leave soldiers vulnerable to ID thieves for years to come ... (See ID theft)

After divorce, ex leaves joint debts unpaid -- You're never really free of an ex-spouse as long as you have credit card and other debt together. When one stops paying, what recourse do you have? ... (See Ex's debts)

How rapid rescoring works to improve a credit score -- A rapid rescore can be requested by a mortgage lender to quickly undo damage from an erroneous credit report, but it won't erase your old mistakes ... (See Rapid rescore)

Rewards programs move toward flexible, immediate spending -- As frequent flier and hotel rewards programs get devalued, credit card issuers are offering new ways to redeem your points, from taxi rides to paying your mortgage ... (See Flexible rewards)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15 percent -- Feb. 12, 2014: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained untouched this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Q&A with Dave Barry: A perpetual adolescent looks at parenting -- As his daughter matures, the comedy writer doesn't, but is thankful his wife can confront credit card-wielding parents of Bieber worshipers ... (See Dave Barry Q&A)

Credit card approval tips for new immigrants -- New to the U.S.? Until you understand the American credit rating system, expect to be continually rejected for new credit cards ... (See New to U.S.)

Redeeming 'impossible to use' British Airways miles -- What to do with that stack of BA miles if you live in the U.S.? European award flights are loaded with surcharges but you still have lots of options ... (See Avios miles )

8 savvy habits of high-volume credit card users -- Some cardholders have learned how to charge and pay off massive sums on their credit cards while always coming out ahead. Here's what they're doing right ... (See Savvy habits)

Financing equipment when partners' credit profiles differ -- Sharing business debt can be tricky, especially if one partner's credit profile is stronger than the other's. But there are ways to do it where both partners are still protected ... (See Financing)

Fed: Card balances leap in December -- Credit card balances rose even more than usual for the holiday season, posting a third month of growth ... (See Fed: Card balances rise a 3rd month)

Wife finds another woman's credit card under bed -- Her husband doesn't know whose it is, so what's a perplexed wife to do when she finds, under her bed, a credit card belonging to another woman? ... (See Lost card)

Data breaches turn spotlight on EMV cards -- Data breaches lead to a renewed push toward chip-enabled cards, but experts warn they are not the ultimate cure ... (See EMV)

Discover expands free FICO credit score program -- Discover cardholders will not only get a free credit score on their monthly statements, they'll have it explained to them, the company announced ... (See Free FICO)

What helps credit score more: Pay debt all at once? Or in bits? -- Paying all at once may be harder on your budget, but it's the fastest way to get a crucial credit scoring ratio back out of whack ... (See Pay down entire debt)

2014 balance transfer survey: Beware combo deals, two-tier fees -- Long-lasting 0-percent balance transfer offers abound to help consumers pay down card debt, but new tweaks aren't so friendly ... (See Balance transfer survey)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15 percent -- Feb. 5, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

5 financial cleanses to break bad money habits -- Take a page from the nutritional world and go hard core after the parts of your financial life you want to change with these five money cleanses ... (See 5 financial cleanses)

How many is too many credit cards? -- If you've got great credit, 0 percent promotional deals are there for the taking. But does having too many paid-off cards a good or bad thing? ... (See Too many cards?)

In-person smartphone payments? No thanks, most say -- Most of us say "meh" to the idea of paying by smartphone, though young people, particularly men, show more interest in mobile payments ... (See Payments by smartphone poll)

When is it time to 'cut off' your financially dependent parents? -- If you’re a parent, you may be used to financially helping out your kids. But what if the tables turn and your own mom or dad starts coming to you for money? How much should you help them out? ... (See Cut off your parents)

High-end reward cards offer luxury hotel perks -- Luxury hotel perks are not a reason to choose a credit card. But if you frequent top-end hotels, you may be able to squeeze some value from them ... (See Luxe perks)

Fed: banks keep tight grip on card loans -- Senior loan officers survey says demand for credit cards is greater than supply ... (See Demand for credit cards)

ID theft disconnect: We fear it but still engage in risky behavior -- A survey conducted by Experian's ProtectMyID found that consumers are increasingly worried about the threat of identity theft, but are not doing much to protect themselves ... (See ID theft: Fear vs. actions)

Choosing a credit card processor for a medical practice -- If your doctor's office or medical practice is in the market for a merchant account provider, you may be able to get a deal through a professional organization. But there are other considerations besides price in choosing the right one ... (See Medical)

Professional award bookers promise 'free' flights for fewer miles -- You could book your own frequent flier ticket, but a new trade, professional award bookers, promises to find better free flight for fewer points -- for a fee ... (See Award bookers)

Tips for turning your part-time hobby into a full-time job -- Is it possible to turn your hobby into a full time job? Yes, but it's not easy and there's no guarantee of success ... (See From hobby to job)

While hiding from abusive ex, she falls behind on loan payments -- A mom and her kids went into hiding to escape an abusive husband last year, but now she's worried how to make good on her lapsed car payments ... (See In hiding)

Moving out? Don't forget about the credit cards -- Relocation is stressful enough without having it damage your credit. With a bit of planning, you can maintain your sanity -- and your credit score ... (See Moving and credit)

Infographic:Rewards program use declines across all ages -- Study by Mercator Advisory Group finds consumers less interested in reward programs, more interested in tailored credit card advantages ... (See Rewards program use declines)

Don't confuse introductory rate, deferred-interest deals -- Interest accumulates like a ticking bomb on deferred-interest deals, exploding into huge charges if you don't pay the balance in time ... (See Intro vs. deferred)

Mid-Atlantic complains most about credit card problems -- Washington, D.C., and neighboring states file the most complaints per capita about credit cards with the federal consumer financial regulator ... (See Complaints)

Fed holds off on rate increases -- The Federal Reserve announced no change in the short-term rates that affect credit card APRs and signaled that hikes will start beyond 2014 ... (See Federal Reserve)

Credit card interest rates fall to 15 percent -- Jan. 29, 2014: Average rates on new card offers dropped this week for the first time in nearly six months. ... (See Rates)

Do you have what it takes for DIY debt settlement? -- Settling your own debts instead of hiring someone else can save you money and put you in the power seat, but it's not for the fainthearted ... (See DIY debt)

Stop obsessing over a perfect credit score -- When your FICO credit score is just 70 points shy of a perfect score, is it really worth the effort to push it all the way to the top? ... (See Credit score obsession)

How to let kids fail their way to financial success -- As parents, the instinct is to protect children from making mistakes -- especially costly financial flubs. But knowing how to handle mistakes can mean the difference between an error becoming a learning opportunity and a bad habit ... (See Kids' money mistakes)

How to score a rental car using a rewards credit card -- Scoring a free rental card with credit card rewards is not as straightforward as earning a free flight. But with a little know-how, you can do it ... (See Rental car)

CFPB: Credit card complaints decline in 2013 -- Consumers filed fewer complaints about credit cards with the federal consumer watchdog in 2013, but two big card issuers saw an increase in grumbles ... (See Complaints)

Can I borrow to pay my business tax bill? -- It's usually better to borrow money to pay your tax bill than to rack up penalties and interest with the IRS. You have a few options, including credit cards ... (See Tax bill)

To fight high energy bills, find the likely suspects -- An energy bill higher than the norm An energy bill that stays stubbornly high is cause for investigation -- starting with the big utilities that consume the most power ... (See Energy bills)

Ex's ID theft thwarts new couple's finances -- His ex-wife racked up debt in his name on a secret credit card, but agreed to pay if off in the divorce. But how does he clear the debt off his credit reports? ... (See Ex-debt)

How long can a judgment impact your credit score? -- Once you have a judgment against, you, it's bad: Some state laws allow them to be in force for decades. But it may fall from your credit report sooner ... (See Judgments)

Credit card interest rates remain locked at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 22, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates locked at 15.06 percent)

Restoring credit score after defaulting on student loan -- Deferring student loan payments doesn't last forever. When they come due, it's time to pay up or suffer the credit consequences ... (See Student loan default)

Credit cards: our moral guardians -- When it comes to arbiters of morality and integrity, we look toward the Ten Commandments, our moms and -- in a strange and largely unnoticed new trend -- the corporate behemoths that issue our credit cards ... (See Guardians)

Automated tip amounts: how to regain control -- Clever mobile payment software in taxis and restaurants could be causing you to spend more on tips than you normally would ... (See Automated tipping)

How to destroy metal credit cards without killing your shredder -- The metal content in the Chase Sapphire Preferred card makes it hard to destroy with scissors or a shredder. So how can you safely dispose of it when it's time? ... (See Heavy metal)

Do I need credit cards to build my business credit? -- Responsible use of credit cards is an easy way to build a credit record for your small business. But there are other ways, if you're determined to stay card-free ... (See Business credit)

Single mom struggling with card payments -- A single mom living paycheck to paycheck wonders how she can clear up the charge-offs and late payments listed on her credit reports ... (See Credit score)

As online gambling booms, credit card acceptance lags -- States turning to online gambling find the credit card industry is reluctant to join the game, leaving gamers scrambling for alternate ways to ante up ... (See Online gambling)

Infographic: Consumers expect credit to stay tight -- A few hopeful consumers predict credit accessibility will get easier -- but most think it will get tougher or stay the same ... (See Credit accessibility)

Erroneous loan default report won't affect other credit accounts -- When a large error claiming you defaulted suddenly appears on your credit, you have to fight to remove it, but it won't impact other loans ... (See Not my debt)

Closing excess cards without hurting credit score -- With a wallet full of retail cards, just how do you go about closing the extraneous ones without incurring too much credit score damage? ... (See Closing cards)

Credit card interest rates frozen at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 15, 2014: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Weekly Rate Report, Jan. 15, 2014)

Avoiding your reward card's annual fee -- You’ve banked the sign-up miles from your new card. Here’s how to escape yearly fees and keep your credit score up ... (See Annual fee)

Freezing business card accounts after the company fails -- A company president wonders how to stop his former business partner from charging more on credit cards the partner opened for the business ... (See Partner debt)

Saving money versus paying off debt -- Does it make sense to put money in a savings account while you still are repaying debts ... (See Savings)

Infographic: Credit card delinquencies inch up after three-year slide -- While consumers are paying many of their loans on time, late credit card payments saw an uptick in the third quarter of 2013, according to the American Bankers Association ... (See Delinquencies)

Keeping a card balance to boost credit score is dumb advice -- Some financial "experts" claim that carrying a small balance on your credit cards is good for your credit score. It's time to kiss that myth goodbye ... (See Balance)

Q&A: How to save $1,000 a month -- Author Brian O'Connor cut his own middle-class budget by $1,000 per month and found that, in many cases, it was easier than he expected ... (See $1,000)

Lessons from abroad on financial education -- The U.S. is not alone in its attempts to address financial literacy in public schools. An international push is on to teach kids the money skills they need to navigate today's increasingly challenging financial landscape ... (See Financial literacy)

Next steps if your settlement offer to a debt collector is rejected -- Once negotiations over a debt stall and collection efforts reach the legal threat stage, it is better to have your own attorney ... (See Debt collection)

Why Johnny can't save money -- and what schools should do about it -- As the feds push for more financial education in public schools, questions linger about how financial subjects should be taught -- and whether they're even teachable for school children ... (See Literacy)

Fed: Card balances rise again -- Credit card balances bulged in November for a second month, as consumers' spending increased faster than their paychecks rose, the Federal Reserve said ... (See Card balances rise)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates begin year at 15.06 percent -- Jan. 8, 2014: Average rates on new card offers remained frozen in place Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates still at 15.06 percent)

9 credit-buildings tips for US immigrants -- The land of opportunity requires newcomers to establish credit anew once they arrive in the U.S., but you can go from nothing to good credit in a short time ... (See Immigrant credit)

Psst! A hot tip on debt elimination companies: They're bogus -- So the guy at the airport lounge was saying how a debt elimination firm cost just $49 to cut all debt. It's real, right? Erica splashes cold water in a reader's face ... (See Debt elimination )

How behavioral economics explains 6 common money mistakes -- Ever look back at financial decisions and ask: Why did I do that? Turns out, science can probably answer the question with behavioral economics ... (See Mistakes)

How to get to that long-haul international flight for free -- A trip to the Middle East is expensive, whether you're paying with reward points or dollars. But combining a couple of credit card sign-up bonuses can nearly get you there for free ... (See Bonuses)

Infographic: Baby boomers have the most credit pride -- Baby boomers have more credit confidence than younger generations, according to a survey ... (See Credit pride)

Credit card late fees could rise in 2014 -- The CFPB has added $1 to the amount that first-time offenders can be charged for a late credit card payment, raising it to $26 ... (See credit card late payment fees)

Should I offer e-receipts to customers? -- Electronic receipts are becoming more common in brick-and-mortar stores. Besides saving paper, they're a fairly simple marketing tool ... (See E-receipts)

Options you haven't thought of for raising quick cash -- Cash crunch? Yes, you should look for more income. But turn over every stone, including utility refunds, pawnshops, eBay and adjusting your withholding ... (See Quick cash)

She took cash advances on his card, then he died. Does she owe? -- A woman worries that the cash advances she made as an authorized user on a now-deceased man's card will raise the ire of his family ... (See Liability)

The financial power of negative thinking -- Optimism may feel good, but pessimism is sometimes more helpful in building wealth. Here are six times it pays to have a more pessimistic financial outlook ... (See Negative thinking)

Options for overcoming thin credit -- If you've had little or no credit history and have no income, secured cards and becoming an authorized user are your best options ... (See Overcoming thin credit)

Tips for getting that first credit card -- The path to getting your first credit card may be bumpy at first, but if managed properly, the road to easy credit becomes a smooth ride ... (See First credit card)

Credit card interest rates end year at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 31, 2013: A year of stability in credit card rates ends with APRs at 15.06%, just 0.1% higher than a year ago, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Which credit cards earn the most reward points at Wal-Mart? -- If you're a regular Wal-Mart shopper, maximizing your rewards earning potential can be tricky. The store slips through the cracks of many bonus-earning categories, but there are a few options ... (See Wal-Mart rewards)

Infographic: What were 2013's biggest budget busters? -- For about one in five Americans, meals at restaurants were the biggest threat to their budgets in 2013, according to a survey ... (See Budget busters)

Fed: Banks modestly lower barriers to credit cards -- Banks are swinging open their vault doors wider for businesses, but consumers are seeing only slightly easier access to loans -- including credit cards ... (See Credit cards)

Help! Our supplier is trying to change our payment terms -- If a supplier is tightening credit, find out why and check your contract carefully. You may be able to fight the change or at least ask for the original terms as a courtesy ... (See Supplier credit)

Eldar Shafir Q&A: Money worries lead to poor financial decisions -- Constant concern about money makes you prone to poor financial decisions, says "Scarcity" co-author Eldar Shafir ... (See Broke)

Credit card balances rise in March -- Consumers added credit card debt in March amid growing incomes and an improving job climate ... (See G.19)

Top retailers' 2015 return and receipt policies -- Our survey of 12 large retailers' policies regarding returning items without a receipt shows most allow it -- within certain limits ... (See No-receipt return policies)

Curses! Foiled again! FBI warns of tinfoil 'feed horn' scheme -- Federal officials are warning merchants -- and credit card customers whose cards have been stolen -- of a new, decidedly low-tech scam called the "Feed Horn Scheme" ... (See Feed horn scam)

How to undo unauthorized card charges -- When you provide a merchant with your card for one item but other items get added to the bill without your permission, it's time to file a dispute ... (See Dispute)

Need a last-minute tax deduction? Try a credit card charity network -- By donating through a major credit card's charitable giving network, you can pledge (and get the deduction) today, pay the bill next year ... (See Taxes)

Having trouble making your credit card payments? -- Do your best to continue making minimum payments on your cards. For any cards that you are not able to pay, communicate regularly with the card issuer to let them know the status of your situation ... (See Late payments)

Will prepaying card bill help credit score? -- Paying your credit card bill as early as possible is a good habit, but it won't help your score any more than paying it on time ... (See Prepaying a credit card bill)

AmEx makes refunds for add-on products -- Regulators ordered American Express to pay back customers for deceptive marketing and unfair billing of ID theft and identity protection products ... (See AmEx refunds add-on products)

Credit card interest rates stuck at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 24, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

The ultimate gift: paying off someone else's debt -- Interested in embracing your inner philanthropist? Instead of buying a gift, why not apply that cash to help whittle down a deserving person's debt load? ... (See Debt payoff)

Using credit cards to unlock elite airport lounges -- Credit cards that offer access to airport lounges tend to have high fees. But they're often the least expensive way in, and may be worthwhile if you're a frequent traveler ... (See Lounges)

Mississippi sues Chase Bank over debt collection -- Mississippi's attorney general sued Chase Bank for making false demands for debt against credit card customers ... (See Chase sued false debit collection)

With small-business loans elusive, credit cards may be an option -- It's still not easy for many small businesses to get bank loans -- one of the cheapest sources of financing. Here's what to do if you're turned down ... (See Small-business loans)

12 credit card predictions for 2014 -- What will issuers do to woo new cardholders next year? Will rewards get juicier or 0 percent interest deals longer? We talked to the experts to find out ... (See 2014 forecast)

Parent with dementia and a $40,000 debt: Who's liable? -- The cost of an assisted living facility has left no room for even the minimum payments on mom's credit cards. What's an adult daughter to do? ... (See Dementia and debt)

Video: How to use EMV smart chip credit cards -- U.S. financial institutions are finally issuing credit cards with EMV computer chips, which are widespread in other parts of the world. They promise to be more secure than traditional magnetic stripe cards ... (See EMV cards)

Data breach protection: 10 tips -- When your card data may have been stolen by hackers in a data breach, it's no time to panic, but do be vigilant and ready to take action if unauthorized charges show up ... (See Data breach protection)

Should you remove money from your retirement savings? -- Generally, it is considered a bad idea to take money out of a retirement account to pay off debt, particularly if you must pay early withdrawal fees ... (See Retirement withdrawal)

3 ways to minimize holiday returns without losing customers -- A spate of post-holiday returns can make a real dent in your profits. There are ways for even small businesses to minimize returns without offending customers used to generous policies from retail giants ... (See Holiday returns)

Fed payments study: Signature cards more prone to fraud -- Credit cards and signature debit cards are the payment methods most susceptible to fraud, with online transactions at highest risk, the Federal Reserve said ... (See Fraud)

Infographic: Identity theft takes an expensive, emotional toll -- Imagine the populations of Illinois and Oklahoma all falling victim to identity theft, and you'll have an idea of this crime's annual scope ... (See Identity theft)

Rates remain at 15.06% for 5th week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 18, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Weekly Rate Report, Dec. 18, 2013)

CFPB report: On-campus credit card deals fading away -- The lucrative, once-secret bank deals with colleges for on-campus access to students are fading, but on-campus debit card deals are rising to take their places ... (See Campus credit card deals)

Charity gift cards let recipient donate to favorite cause -- School a foreign student? Sure. Feed orphaned chimps? Of course. Support local artists? Why not. For a fee, charity gift cards let recipients choose a favorite cause to support ... (See Charity gift cards)

Yes, get a second credit card, if you used the first wisely -- But beware: If you're not paying off the balance every month on your primary card, applying for a second card won't help and could get you into trouble ... (See Second card)

Fed starts 'taper,' begins weaning off support for low rates -- The Federal Reserve voted to pump less cash into low long-term rates, but held constant the short-term rates that set credit card APRs ... (See long-term and short-term rates)

Rules change on reverse mortgages -- The Reverse Mortgage Stabilization Act, which went into effect on Sept. 30, imposes limits on loan sizes and raised mortgage insurance premiums ... (See New rules)

Award charts are key when considering hotel cards -- Just because it's easy to rack up points on a hotel card doesn't mean you'll become a resort regular for free. If the points are worthless, you may be better off with a different card ... (See Hotel rewards)

Is my credit score good enough for a business card? -- Many business cards require excellent credit -- but what qualifies as "excellent" depends on the scoring system ... (See Business credit )

Former 'credit junkie' Beverly Harzog comes clean -- Personal finance expert Beverly Harzog unveils her secret addiction to credit in a new book, "Confessions of a Credit Junkie" ... (See Credit junkie)

Some frequent flier miles, reward points can be inherited -- You aren't going to be able to take those frequent flier miles with you on that trip to the great beyond, but you might be able to pass them on to your kids ... (See Inheriting points)

Bad idea: using credit cards to pay for a move -- Relocating to another state without a job, emergency fund or a place to live is just bad planning. Living off credit cards until your ship rolls in is even worse ... (See Living on credit)

Despite settlement, demands to repay old debt resurface -- A collector's new demands you pay an old debt should go away if you got written verification of the settlement agreement. If not, take these steps ... (See Written verification)

CFPB report: Biggest card issuers push consumers into arbitration -- Few consumers use the dispute resolution format favored by banks, says a new report by the federal consumer watchdog ... (See Arbitration report)

Credit card interest rates remain flat at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 11, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers lingered at 15.06 Wednesday for the fourth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

Holiday card rewards 2013 -- If you want to save a little money while using credit cards at the holidays, card issuers have some deals for you ... (See Holiday rewards)

How soon after bankruptcy can you get new credit cards? -- With a Chapter 7 bankruptcy almost behind you, how soon is too soon to start applying for new credit? And will you be approved? ... (See Post-bankruptcy)

Infographic: 56 percent of parents willing to rack up holiday debt for kids -- Is that first post-holiday credit card statement worth it to see your kids' eyes light up at the spread under the tree? More than half of parents with kids under 18 say it is ... (See Holiday debt)

CareCredit ordered to refund $34 million to cardholders -- GE Capital and its CareCredit unit agreed to refund $34.1 million to medical patients who got faulty information when they signed up for deferred interest cards ... (See CareCredit)

New business financing sources to try when the bank says no -- With bank loans still eluding many small businesses years after the global financial crisis, new online services are sniffing out opportunity to fill the gap in the credit marketplace ... (See Financing sources)

Use a different card, but keep priority boarding privilege -- You have to request cardholder status when your boarding pass is issued in order to qualify for priority boarding privileges ... (See Boarding)

What are some good business rewards card deals for end of year? -- December can be a good time to rack up rewards points if you’re making year-end purchases to maximize your business tax deductions. The best deal for you depends on how you plan to use the card and your preferred rewards ... (See Business rewards)

As airlines merge, frequent flier miles decline in value -- As American Airlines and US Airways begin to merge, travelers are bracing for a new frequent flier program that would raise the number of miles needed for a free ticket, mirroring changes from other companies in the travel industry ... (See Stingier rewards)

Checklist for new graduates looking to rent 1st apartment -- New graduates faced with a tough job market have to crunch the numbers before deciding whether they can afford to leave the nest and get an apartment of their own ... (See 1st apartment)

Fed: Credit card balances shot up October -- Consumers "tuned out the drama in DC" and went shopping in October, boosting credit card balances at an annualized rate of 6 percent, the Federal Reserve reported ... (See G.19 consumer credit report, October 2013)

Husband's secret debt destroying marriage -- He opened new cards without his wife's knowledge, racked up debt and now can't afford the minimum payments. Should she leave him or give him another chance? ... (See Secret debt)

Lending to friends and family: Your 4-step guide -- Lending to people you know can be fraught with risk. If you're going to do it, follow this 4-step guide to check expectations and improve your chances of success ... (See Family loans)

Sample promissory note for loans to family, friends -- If you're lending to a relative or friend, you'll want to craft a written agreement. This free sample promissory note spells out how and when you are to be paid, and what happens if the borrower doesn't repay the loan ... (See Sample promissory loan note)

A quick guide to credit card cash advances: No! Don't! -- In an emergency, when you have no other options, then maybe – maybe – taking a cash advance from your credit card makes sense. Otherwise, no. And by that, we mean, NO! ... (See Cash advance guide)

Death announcements serve notice to creditors -- A published death announcement serves notice to creditors that the clock has started ticking for them to file claims against the estate ... (See Death notices)

The high cost of credit card cash advances -- Using your credit card to draw cash at an ATM or writing one of those handy checks that comes in your monthly statement can cost you plenty, an exclusive CreditCards.com survey shows ... (See Cash advances)

Regretting your recent cash advance? You're not alone -- More than half of those who have taken a cash advance on a credit card say they have regretted that decision, according to a new CreditCards.com poll ... (See Cash advance poll)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.06 percent -- Dec. 4, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 15.06 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates)

What kind of plastic can you get with fair credit? -- With FICO scores in the low 600s and numerous hard inquiries on his credit reports, will card issuers accept or reject his card application? ... (See Fair credit)

Card issuers soften mandatory arbitration rules -- Signing away your right to go to court is part of most credit card agreements, but the CFPB is taking a look at mandatory arbitration requirements ... (See Mandatory arbitration)

Infographic: 10 percent think debt dies with them -- Many consumers aren't aware their unpaid debts could haunt their survivors, according to a survey from Securian Financial Group ... (See Debt after death)

Mysterious 'Tips for Jesus' leaves behind enormous tips -- Wait staffs across the United States are hoping for a visit from an anonymous customer with a credit card and a taste for outrageous generosity ... (See Tips for Jesus)

What to do when you find a lost credit card -- Good Samaritans can actually make things worse if they take the wrong action. Read our surprising list of do's and don'ts for handling lost credit cards ... (See Lost credit card)

Defaulting on card may cost you your AmEx points -- If you have more than just a missed payment or two, American Express gives itself the right to cancel your account “for any reason.” If it cancels your account, you forfeit all of your points ... (See AmEx points)

Can retailers ask for ID with your credit card? -- If you have signed your card, you may not be required to show your ID to make a purchase ... (See ID requests)

Can you ditch your merchant account for a better deal? -- If you have signed a legal contract with a card processing company, you are most likely on the hook to follow the terms of the agreement, even if another company offers you a better deal ... (See Merchant accounts)

Resolve medical debt before marriage -- A young couple wants to tie the knot, but his unpaid medical debt looms over them. Should they go ahead with their wedding plans or put them off until the debt is cleared? ... (See Medical debt)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.06 percent -- Nov. 26, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

What's the big deal about secured cards? -- When your credit is trashed or you have a thin credit file, building up a solid credit score can be within reach by just signing up and using a secured card ... (See Secured cards)

Gift card scammers skirt security with new tricks -- With security surrounding gift cards improving, scammers are resorting to new tactics, including old-fashioned trickery and new technology ... (See Scams)

Credit card perks can save you cash this Christmas -- From special rewards rates to price protection programs, a number of credit card perks can smooth your holiday shopping ... (See Holiday perks)

Infographic: Millennials have unhealthy credit habits -- Millennials could stand to learn a few credit-management habits from older generations, according to research from Experian ... (See Millennial credit habits)

How to get cash for your business without credit -- If you need to buy a few hundred dollars' worth of supplies for your business but credit cards aren't an option, you might want to examine your expenses, get a job, or both ... (See Business cash)

Savvy ways to finance holiday inventory -- Retailers need to avoid financing inventory they are not sure they can sell — which can leave them stuck paying interest on goods they'll have to mark down in January. That's especially true for those who rely on costly credit card financing ... (See Inventory)

Death, wills, remarriages can all change inheritances -- State law governs what happens when a person dies without a will. Typically they assume that any assets of the deceased should go to a surviving spouse before going to a child ... (See Lost inheritance)

Using gift card exchange sites to stretch your holiday budget -- Gift cards have become so popular that a secondary market is booming. While you probably wouldn't give mom a used sweater for the holidays, you might be able to save money by buying other people’s unwanted gift cards at a discount ... (See Discount gift cards)

Is family responsible for mom's debt? -- An 89-year-old mom is carrying $20,000 in card debt from purchasing gifts for loved ones. Will the family be liable for the debt when she dies? ... (See Mom's debt)

What percentage of available credit should you stay under? -- How much of your available credit should you use to keep a high credit score? There's no one-size-fits-all answer, but the less credit you use, the better ... (See Ratio)

FICO credit-score giveaway coming to Discover cardholders -- Discover's the latest bank to add free credit score access as a routine service, completing the route of the once-secret three-digit number to full public view ... (See Credit scores)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.06 percent -- Nov. 20, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers inched higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Using your card for fast cash is costly -- Sometimes a cash advance from your credit card can be a lifesaver, but high fees, interest charges make them costly for routine cash flow fixes ... (See Cash advance)

No thanks; 12 gifts that cost too much to receive -- Tablet, iPhone, a new puppy? Sometimes your best intentions to fulfill your loved ones' wishes can end up costing them a lot more than what you intended ... (See Too-pricey gifts)

Infographic: Lack of savings more worrisome than card debt -- Although credit card debt is more stressful than either health care or living costs, what's most likely to keep you up at night is a lack of savings for the future ... (See Money worries: No savings outstresses debt)

Earning rewards for telecom purchases -- AT&T offers two rewards cards that earn savings on your phone or Internet bill. But other rewards cards may offer a better deal ... (See Telecom rewards)

GAO: Information resellers quickly invading personal lives -- Data collectors know and resell your buying preferences, investments, ailments, favorite sports, hobbies and political leanings -- and need to be reined in, the government agency says in a report ... (See Information resellers)

Gift cards chart 2013 -- We've researched the terms and features of the cards of major banks and dozens of retailers to let you make a side-by-side comparison ... (See Gift card survey 2013 comparison chart)

Gift cards 2013: Reload, please -- Our exclusive survey of all the top gift card sellers shows this year's trend is that they'd really like you to get you to register your card and reload (and reload) it ... (See 2013 gift card survey)

Entrepreneurial and under 21? You'll need to build a credit record -- Starting a business at age 20 often requires credit. The CARD Act makes building a credit record more difficult for young people, but it can be done ... (See Credit)

8 creative ways to wrap gift cards -- Worried your gift card is too impersonal? With a little wit and a little inspiration, you can turn that shiny plastic into a whimsical gift ... (See Wrap gift cards)

Debt judgment puts inheritance at risk -- When expecting an inheritance after you've had a judgment against you for unpaid debt, don't worry -- that money doesn't automatically go to creditors. But worry: They'll come looking ... (See Inheritance and debt)

NY Fed: Household debt rise marks a 'turning point' -- Households increased their debt load in the third quarter by the largest amount since early 2008, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York ... (See Fed report: Borrowing returns)

Tips for building credit before renting a home -- Landlords commonly check the credit history of potential renters; knowing and polishing yours can hand you the keys to a new home ... (See Credit check)

Layaway 2013: Survives recession's end, but evolves -- Compare fees and policies for the old-fashioned holiday financial helper, which enjoyed a revival during the recession and shows every sign of sticking around ... (See Layaway)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.05 percent -- Nov. 13, 2013: Average rates on new card offers remained at 15.05 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Great degree, great job, but no credit -- Recent college grads shouldn't expect to be granted easy access to credit once they land a job. Building a great credit score takes time, patience ... (See New credit)

2013 airline gift card comparison chart -- While most airlines offer gift cards, their terms and conditions vary. Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy ... (See Airline gift card)

How to use the grace period to avoid paying interest -- Taking advantage of the grace period's break on interest charges can save the typical card user a couple hundred bucks a year, but the savings aren't automatic ... (See Grace period)

Cheap ways to renew soon-to-expire BA Avios points -- If you're not flying with British Airways anytime soon, you can still avoid losing your miles with the help of one of your rewards credit cards ... (See Renew points)

Infographic: Young people more likely to freely swap plastic -- While older people are more likely to hold tight to their credit and debit cards, younger generations are more liberal about sharing them with others, a survey says ... (See Borrowing credit cards)

Best ways to redeem rewards points over the holidays -- Credit card rewards you've been earning all year can help defray the costs of the holidays. But be sure to consider the best strategy before cashing in ... (See Holiday rewards strategies)

Can a doctor's office charge a credit card surcharge? -- Like other merchants, doctors' offices are allowed to charge a fee for accepting credit cards, but at the risk of aliening patients ... (See Credit card surcharge)

How small churches can master credit cards -- Small churches face unique problems when it comes to using credit cards responsibly. But the right approach can prevent problems and allow churches to focus on their higher calling ... (See Churches)

Forging hubby's signature on a card application -- Forging a spouse's signature here and there may be OK, but never on a credit card or loan application, and not if it's done secretly ... (See Forgery)

Credit card balances extend their slide -- Credit card balances fell for a fourth month in a row in September, according to the Federal Reserve's monthly report on consumer credit ... (See G.19 consumer debt report, September 2013)

Can card issuer send bills just 11 days before due date? -- The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009 says consumers should get 21 days from the time the bill was sent until it's due ... (See Due dates)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.05 percent -- Nov. 6, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose to 15.05 percent this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

When's a good time to drop dad's card? -- His dad helped him get off to a good credit start by sharing a card with him during college. Now, at 23, it's time to drop dad's card and get his own ... (See First card)

Beware: 7 retailer tricks that make you spend more -- From jumbo-sized carts to BOGO deals, retailers employ all sorts of tactics to nudge you into buying products that aren't on your list ... (See Retailer tricks)

Fed: banks loosen credit limts -- Banks aren't rushing to grant more credit cards to new applicants, but they are being more generous about expanding credit limits ... (See Banks expand credit limits)

Mobile apps help track business credit card receipts -- A handful of receipt-tracking apps now offer new ways to track business expenses, allowing you to capture receipts and file them on the fly ... (See Receipts)

A glitch with e-statements, and poof! Your APR is 30% -- If you never signed up for electronic statements and ended up missing payments because of the switch, you may have grounds to reverse the credit damage ... (See E-statement woes)

Don't be a victim of home burglaries -- Home robbers prize homes easy to rob and hard to get caught robbing. These steps will prevent them from seeing your house as being on either list ... (See Preventing home burglaries)

New complaint data zings credit bureaus -- Federal complaint data shows that consumers are often dissatisfied -- even when credit bureaus say they have addressed the problem ... (See Credit bureau complaints)

Ex-wife racks up debt on joint accounts -- When a marriage is over, joint accounts should be severed. If not, an ex's financial misbehavior can come back to haunt you ... (See Divorce debt)

Infographic: Preferred payment methods vary by location -- Buying groceries? You'll pay by debit card. Online? It's credit cards or PayPal. Grabbing a burger? You'll fork over cash, says a study of preferred payment methods ... (See Preferred payment methods)

Cards maxed out for 10 years? Perhaps you need a plan -- If you've lived for a decade with maxed-out credit cards, consider a debt management plan, but pick your counselor carefully and know the credit impact ... (See Debt plan)

Dilbert creator Scott Adams: Goals are for losers -- In his new book, the cartoonist who chronicles workplace buffoonery argues to be successful, never, ever follow your passion ... (See Scott Adams)

Credit card interest rates hold at 15.03 percent -- Oct. 30, 2013: Interest rates on new card offers lingered at 15.03 percent Wednesday for the fourth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Card APRs)

Make sure your first card is a good fit -- Shopping for your first credit card is much like finding that perfect pair of jeans -- it has to fit your income as well as be age and credit appropriate ... (See First card)

Buy lottery tickets with a credit card? Probably not -- A web of state laws, retailers, card policies can all ban the practice ... (See Lottery tickets and credit cards)

Fed keeps its foot on the gas -- The Federal Reserve's interest rate setting committee decided to maintain its measures aimed at keeping interest rates at historic lows ... (See Fed leaves rates alone)

3 ways to curb pre-holiday money stress -- Ah, the holidays. From Halloween to New Year's Eve, it's common to experience the financial freak out. Must you, though? No, say the experts ... (See Holiday spending)

Is a widow liable for using dead husband's card? -- After the death of a spouse, continuing to use his or her plastic can be considered fraudulent. And if you can't make the payments, the issuer can come after you ... (See Debt on dead spouse's card)

Ways to save on dry cleaning -- Is dry cleaning your work clothes eating away at your pay check? Save that money by dry cleaning at home ... (See dry cleaning)

Mom co-signed, now stuck with student loan payments -- When a parent co-signs a student loan for a child, the assumption is usually that the child will make payments after they graduate. But sometimes, things backfire ... (See Co-signing)

Adding a spouse as authorized card user to boost score -- Couples looking to buy a house can buff their team credit score by having the person with better credit add the partner with worse credit as an authorized card user ... (See Score)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 15.03 percent -- Oct. 23, 2013: Average rates on new card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Infographic: The cost of Halloween -- Those celebrating Halloween will spend an average of $107 this year. Our infographic shows the traditions and treats that will cost Americans an arm and a leg -- and perhaps various other body parts ... (See Halloween spending)

FTC to Aaron's: Shut down your rental computers' peephole webcams -- Consumers who rented Aaron's Inc. computers were subject to a nasty privacy invasion: spyware that captured their every activity at home, including what the FTC terms 'intimate activities' ... (See Spycams)

Getting rid of old medical debt -- When old medical debt is keeping you from moving ahead with your life, it's time to take action. Either pay it off or work out a debt settlement with collectors ... (See Medical debt)

7 ways to prep for a lean holiday season -- Avoid buyer's remorse this season by checking out these expert tips for keeping your spending frugal but festive ... (See Holiday spending)

Do chip-and-PIN cards work in the US? -- A chip card issued in the U.S. will work here because point-of-sale terminals will read the mag stripe and ignore the embedded microchip. The same is true of cards issued overseas -- unless the issuer ignores the mag stripe, which is happening more often ... (See EMV in USA)

2013 bankruptcy filings continue decline -- 2013 is on track to be the third straight year of reduced filings since 2010, when the aftermath of the recession pushed personal bankruptcies to about 1.53 million ... (See Bankruptcy)

Using a cash-out refinancing of your home to pay off a business loan -- Before you rush into refinancing your small-business loan with a cash-out refi, make sure you understand the risks. You may get a better interest rate, but could ultimately pay more ... (See Refinancing)

Chronic late credit card payments: How bad can fines, fees get? -- Occasional tardiness won gentler treatment under a 2009 reform law, but repeat offenses bring heavier penalties ... (See Late fees)

Who pays card bill after parent dies? -- Once a parent passes, all bills should go through his or her estate. Even if you used the card with permission prior to death, if it's not your card, it's not your bill ... (See Liability)

Becoming disloyal: 6 reasons to quit a loyalty program -- Yes, you love your perks and discounts, but at some point, your loyalty may cost you too much time and headaches to be worthwhile ... (See Loyalty programs)

Keeping up with ever-shorter rewards promos -- For consumers, the rise of deals and bonuses that last for as little as one day can mean even more ways to save money or accumulate credit card rewards. But the trend also means cardholders have to pay closer attention ... (See Rewards deals)

Seeking low-interest cards in quest for a better credit score -- If you're trying to recover from bad credit, will canceling old cards and opening new cards improve your credit score? ... (See Credit score)

Infographic: Mobile banking coming up from behind -- For the first time, mobile banking has outstripped more old-fashioned methods of account maintenance, such as telephone and mail ... (See Mobile banking)

Credit card interest rates hover near record highs -- Oct. 16, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Turned down for secured card. Now what? -- After being turned down for a secured card, which is designed for people with bad credit, are there any other options to rebuild your credit? ... (See Rejected)

How much can collectors increase charged-off debt? -- Courts are setting higher standards for debt buyers to prove their right to charge you interest after a bank has written off your debt ... (See Charged-off debt)

7 jobs that require great credit -- Before applying for that dream -- or even interim -- job, you may want to pull your credit report and deal with any problems first ... (See Jobs requiring credit check)

How do I redeem miles on alliance partner airlines? -- In most cases, you can book your flight in the same way you would a flight on the airline that holds your award miles. There may be some exceptions, though ... (See Miles)

Controversy erupts over credit card payments for guns -- A credit card processing company's decision to stop authorizing legal gun sales from a large North Carolina gun shop has ignited a full-bore controversy over firearms and freedom ... (See Guns)

Will closing a new, unused card hurt my score? -- If you just got new plastic, but a more attractive offer comes in the mail, would it be OK to cancel the first card and apply for the second? ... (See New card)

Yes, debt collectors have the right to collect, and sue -- Some people mistakenly believe that when a debt is charged off, the obligation to pay disappears. Not so. Debt collectors have the legal right to pursue, and sue, you ... (See Debt)

Government shutdown obstructs credit card applications -- The government shutdown has cut off IRS income verification services that lenders use to approve loans, including some credit cards ... (See Shutdown hits card apps)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.03% -- Oct. 9, 2013: Average rates on new card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Can too many credit cards mess up your credit score? -- When a review of your credit report says you have too many card accounts open, will your otherwise stellar credit take a nosedive if you cancel some? ... (See Too many cards)

Biggest debt losers: Couple weathers hardships to repay $50,000 -- Cancer, Alzheimer's and unexpected early retirement can't deter a Georgia couple from sticking to repayment plan and paying off $50,000 in card debt ... (See Biggest debt losers)

Can you claim frequent flier miles after death of a parent? -- Airline policies on the transfer of miles after a death are often restrictive, but it's always worth calling and asking. You've got the best chance if the deceased left the miles to you in a will ... (See Miles)

Infographic: Unemployment makes consumers critical of debt -- Those struggling to find work are more likely to look down their noses at your credit card debt, survey says ... (See Debt anxiety)

Options for accepting overseas payments expand for small business -- It's easier than ever to expand your business by pursuing international customers. But accepting payments is sometimes a hitch. New services -- as well as old standbys -- can help you get paid ... (See Sales)

Banks soften due dates, offer help to furloughed federal workers -- Banks are offering special help for victims of a man-made disaster -- the federal government shutdown that has furloughed federal workers and forced them into economic hardship ... (See Furlough)

Church should limit users of its credit card -- A small church struggles to get receipts from five users of its credit card account. But changing the account name isn't enough. It needs to consider more restrictions ... (See Church)

Card debt fell in August -- Credit card balances were down in August for the third straight month, according to the Federal Reserve ... (See Card debt falls)

Recycling, rebuilding old furniture as a DIY money-maker -- It's the ultimate in frugality -- taking old furniture and recreating it into something new. It can even make you a few bucks ... (See Fixing up furniture)

CFPB widens its debt settlement crackdown -- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau fined a service provider for handling illegal debt settlement fees, marking an expansion in its crackdown on scammers ... (See CFPB)

Headed overseas? Get an EMV chip card -- If you're headed to Europe, it would be wise to upgrade your magnetic-stripe card to a chip card as many countries have migrated to EMV technology ... (See EMV)

Paperless ticket trend leaves unbanked outside the gate -- Swiping a credit card has replaced tearing a ticket stub as the mode of entry to a growing number of entertainment events. No card? No entry ... (See Fans)

12 creepy details data collectors know about you -- Think you can keep your rendezvous to Montreal a secret between you and your sweetie? Not anymore. Personal data is no longer considered your own private business ... (See Data)

Bankruptcy's credit damage worse than debt settlement's -- Both hurt badly, as they should, since they're serious debt defaults. But bankruptcy causes the greater credit score damage ... (See Bankruptcy vs. settlement)

Credit card interest rates remain at 15.02 percent -- Oct. 2, 2013: Average rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Fiancee leaves ex with big pre-wedding debts -- He gave her his credit card to buy a $3,600 dress and financed a $9,000 ring. Then she left the country, taking it all with her. What's a jilted lover to do? ... (See Wedding debt)

Credit CARD Act: Round 2 coming? -- A report from the federal consumer financial regulator says the CARD Act has cut gotcha-type fees, but other problems continue, and need to be addressed ... (See CARD Act report)

Study: CARD Act cut fees $20 billion -- A study of 150 million credit card accounts found that the CARD Act of 2009 cut fees sharply for cardholders, and subprime borrowers saw the most savings ... (See CARD Act study)

Do I need a chip card in Africa? -- It's a good idea to bring a chip card if you're traveling to Africa, especially if you plan to travel between regions. Adoption rate of EMV technology throughout Africa was 77 percent by the end of 2012 and continues to expand ... (See Chip card)

Infographic: Good credit? Issuers want you -- If you have good credit, hold out for the best deal on a new credit card, because there's a lot of competition for your business ... (See Good credit)

Is the primary cardholder for nonprofit personally liable? -- If you're named on the agreement as the primary cardholder, you are personally liable for any debt your organization incurs. A written contract with the nonprofit might lower your risk but won't eliminate it ... (See Nonprofit)

Landing and maintaining an unsecured line of credit for your business -- For small businesses with few assets seeking the flexibility of on-demand funds, an unsecured line of credit can be an ideal option. Keep these pointers in mind when considering one ... (See Unsecured)

Wage garnishment laws differ by state -- If you're served with a summons for unpaid debt, where you live will determine whether a creditor can recoup funds through wage garnishment ... (See Garnish)

Report: We've learned our lesson about using credit cards -- We've learned a lesson from the recession, says a report from a bankers' trade group, with cardholders paying lower interest, carrying lower balances ... (See Lesson learned)

Credit mix and maxing out: Undoing damage from a heavily used card -- If you have one credit card that's close to maxed out every month, having a mix of other types of credit will help soften any credit score damage ... (See Credit mix)

FTC says :( to debt collection text messages -- The FTC has brought its first case against a debt collector for using text messages, sending a message of its own about what collectors can and can't do ... (See FTC)

Infographic: Recession survivors are tackling debt -- While those shaken by the recession are still stalling on paying down debt, those who weathered the storm are quickly recovering ... (See Recession survivors)

Credit card interest rates rise to 15.02% -- Sept. 25, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers lifted this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, Sept. 25, 2013)

Do card issuers remember my very old mistakes? -- If you defaulted on credit card debt years ago, so long ago that the debt is off your credit report, what are your chances of getting a new card with the same issuer? ... (See Old debt)

4 ways to build credit without a credit card -- If you want to start building credit but don't want to get a credit card, there are other options, including passbook or CD loans, credit builder loans and alternative credit scores ... (See Credit without a card)

Which credit cards are best for expedited airport security screening? -- If you travel internationally a lot, you might consider one of the premium credit cards that offer to refund your application fee for Global Entry, the U.S. Customs program allowing expedited entry into the U.S. ... (See Global Entry)

5 things people fail to budget for -- If you're constantly pulling out your credit card because you couldn't stick to your budget, your problem probably isn't willpower. You're overlooking key expenses ... (See Budget fails)

Better off broke: Why some choose poverty over wealth -- Not everyone craves a high-powered job, big house, luxury vacations and stockpiled cash. In fact, some prefer to both earn and spend far below their capability ... (See Broke)

When does a merchant account make financial sense? -- If you accept payments by credit card only occasionally, Square or PayPal are viable options, but above a certain sales volume, merchant accounts make sense ... (See Card payments)

Elderly mom racks up card debt, check-cashing loans -- A daughter needs advice on how to help her elderly mom who has $25,000 in card debt and is relying on check-cashing loans to get by ... (See Breaking debt cycle)

Feds fine Chase, order $309 million refund for credit card add-ons -- The megabank took the money for, but did not deliver, the credit monitoring add-on product it sold to its credit card customers, federal regulators say ... (See Chase refund)

Subprime borrowers have easier time getting car loans -- Unlike with credit cards, auto loans are becoming more available for borrowers with blemished credit ... (See Auto loans)

Sorry, repaying loan from mom won't help your credit score -- It's good you're paying back the personal loan from your mother. You're a fine son. But that doesn't count to credit bureaus ... (See Credit score)

Credit card interest rates remain stuck at 14.99 percent -- Sept. 18, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report, Sept. 18, 2013)

Entertainment lawyer Neeta Ragoowansi on surviving in music -- Entertainment lawyer Neeta Ragoowansi says many artists overlook burgeoning opportunities to promote their music. ... (See Neeta Ragoowansi)

Musician/blogger Doug Ross on music and money management -- For professional musician and blogger Doug Ross, the key to having a successful music career is not artistic integrity -- it's about making a living doing something you love. ... (See Doug Ross)

Industry insider tips: How to make music AND money -- The rise of digital streaming and gadget-centered entertainment has created new opportunities for musicians seeking to build a career out of their craft ... (See Music)

Mom illegally adds daughter to joint card -- A recently married daughter finds out her mom used her name to open a joint account without her permission or knowledge ... (See ID theft)

Grammy-winning producer John Snyder on the business of music -- Although musicians tend to struggle financially, they have many of the same traits as entrepreneurs, says Grammy-winning producer John Snyder. ... (See John Snyder)

Infographic: Women seek good credit, financial stability in long-term partners -- When it comes to a long-term partner's finances and credit scores, women may be more choosey than men ... (See Credit scores and romance)

Fed maintains support for low interest rates -- The Fed left short-term rates that govern credit card APRs unchanged at near-zero levels. It also voted to maintain current support for low long-term rates such as mortgages, defying analysts' expectations ... (See FOMC)

Are squiggly finger signatures legally binding? -- As more retailers move to hand-held payment systems, signing with your finger is the new norm. But is that squiggly, often illegible, scribble really legally binding? ... (See Finger signatures)

4 free, underused card perks -- Free upgrades, refunds, companion tickets and museum admissions are just some of the card perks you may be missing out on ... (See Credit card perks)

Move over cash: Mobile payments go small -- New services promise to make using your phone for small and casual transactions more convenient and secure. The dream: transferring money to your friends will be as easy and quick as sending an email or text message ... (See Mobile payments)

Protecting your business from credit card fraud -- If your business makes a sale to a fraudster, you could lose the cost of the goods in addition to a charge-back fee. Know-how and technology make the best defense ... (See Charge-backs)

Rent-to-own vs. credit cards: Which costs less? -- What if you need a new TV, sofa or even a set of tires but you're broke? Do you turn to plastic or a rent-to-own store? Consumer advocates weigh in ... (See RTO)

Can a minor be sued for using an adult's credit card? -- When a young person is given an adult's card to make purchases, but then the adult cries foul and threatens to sue, is the child liable for the charges? ... (See Minor)

Q&A with 'What to Do When I Get Stupid' author Lewis Mandell -- Our cognitive ability related to credit cards and borrowing peaks around age 53. In his new book, "What to Do When I Get Stupid," behavioral economist Lewis Mandell explains how we can protect ourselves from hucksters -- and ourselves -- in our dotage ... (See Retirement)

Is it OK to close a card before I buy a condo? -- Closing a high-fee card can be a smart thing to do, but not when lenders are considering you for a home loan. Any credit score hit may cost you ... (See Credit score)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.99 percent -- Sept. 11, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

You can now #buy through social media -- but do you really want to? -- In-stream purchasing lets you buy products through social media by posting a simple hashtag or set of words. It's quick, convenient -- and potentially dangerous ... (See Social media)

Pre-screened offers don't guarantee card approval -- All those enticing zero percent card offers that come in the mail don't mean that you'll be approved for them, and can even hurt your credit score ... (See Offers)

Is an award flight taken for business tax-deductible? -- A flight taken for business purposes is covered under Section 162 of the IRS Code. But nowhere does it say that if you use frequent flier miles to pay for the flight you can deduct the expense -- which means you can't ... (See IRS)

9 debt myths debunked -- Did you hear the one about how making even a small payment will stop debt collectors in their tracks? If you believe that, you need some myth-debunking ... (See 9 debt myths)

Steps to protect finances of those with Alzheimer's -- If a loved one is having trouble remembering to pay the credit card bill or spending money recklessly as a result of Alzheimer's disease, there are steps you can take to protect his or her credit and financial security ... (See Alzheimer's)

Infographic: Cardlessness among young people up nearly 80 percent -- All age groups are increasingly shedding credit cards, according to June 2013 data from FICO. Yet no age group is ditching them faster than young people ... (See Young people going credit-cardless)

Can I impose a max on credit card customers? -- If your business sells high-ticket items, credit card swipe fees can add up. The law won't keeping you from imposing limits on card spend but consider other options before you take that route ... (See Limits)

Fed: Card balances fell in July -- Credit card balances fell in July, a time of sluggish consumer spending and languid job growth, the Federal Reserve reported. ... (See G.19)

Don't let a rental scam spoil your vacation -- Rental scams are becoming increasingly common. Recognizing the warning signs is essential to prevent a scam from ruining your next vacation. ... (See Vacation rental scams)

Can you negotiate medical debt with collectors? -- Yes, you can negotiate over delinquent medical bills with a collection agency, but paying less than what is owed has consequences ... (See Medical debt)

CFPB: Consumers' side of credit disputes must be considered -- Federal regulators issued a stern warning for information furnishers to investigate disputed credit report data: Look at a consumer's side of the story ... (See CFPB)

Will making minimum payments damage my credit score? -- Consistently making minimum monthly payments on a high balance is a dangerous habit that can damage your credit score if your financial situation worsens ... (See Minimum)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.99 percent -- Sept. 4, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in more than two months, to 14.99% ... (See Rates)

Rebuilding your credit as an authorized user -- Becoming an authorized user on a spouse's credit card can help you rebuild your credit but you need to understand your responsibilities and be committed to using the card wisely ... (See Rebuilding)

Buying legal marijuana with a credit card still banned -- The new easing of federal enforcement of marijuana laws doesn't lift a ban on credit cards being used at legal pot dispensaries ... (See Marijuana banking)

Can my business require a minimum purchase for credit card customers? -- Merchants can impose on their credit card customers a minimum purchase requirement of up to $10 -- but that doesn't mean you should. And debit cards are a different story ... (See Payment minimums)

Is sharing your credit card ever OK? -- Have you ever lent your credit card to a relative or friend to make a purchase on your behalf? Most times, these actions are harmless, but sometimes they can backfire ... (See Sharing credit cards)

Student loan repayment troubles? Don't delay -- If a student loan ends up in default, your options for repayment become limited, and get worse after wage garnishment ... (See Student loans)

Infographic: Allowances for kids? So old-fashioned -- Allowances may die out as millennials become parents, according to an August 2013 survey from financial services firm Country Financial. ... (See Allowance)

My 88-year-old mother lives on cash advances -- A mother who has been supplementing Social Security by taking credit card cash advances needs a financial intervention -- and a budget ... (See $40,000 debt)

Broke at Big U? Short-term college loans may help -- Many colleges offer loans up to $1,000 at little or no interest. For students short on cash while they wait for financial aid, the loans can be a life saver ... (See College cash)

Rates remain flat for 3rd straight week -- Aug. 28, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Interest Rate Report, Aug. 28)

Is a card account open if it isn't activated? -- If you apply for a card, get it in the mail and then choose not to activate it, does the account still get listed on your credit report? ... (See Unactivated card)

Your map through Chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy -- If you've decided that bankruptcy might be the solution for you, you need to be prepared for the stops along the way for Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies ... (See Bankruptcy map)

It pays to know these 5 things about payroll cards -- More employers in the U.S. are offering their employees reloadable payroll cards in lieu of issuing checks or direct deposits. There are, however, a wide variety of costs and risks associated with payroll cards ... (See Payroll cards)

What’s the best rewards card for parents with kids in school? -- If you have kids away at college you'll need a rewards card that can help pay for travel -- and everyday expenses. Several fit that bill, but you may have to pay an annual fee ... (See Parents)

Can my small business afford to stop accepting AmEx? -- A small business owner wants to stop accepting American Express, reasoning that other credit cards and debit cards are cheaper. But he needs to weigh the costs against the fact that AmEx cardholders are loyal and high-spending ... (See AmEx)

Americans look abroad to avoid student loan blues -- Frustrated by the lack of affordable colleges at home, U.S. students are looking overseas to get an education. Universities in Canada even farther afield offer comparable quality at a lower cost -- but you have to know where to look ... (See Students look abroad)

Building good credit doesn't happen quickly -- Paying on time for a few months will not drastically change a credit score, especially if you've lapsed in the past. But with patience and time, your score will rise ... (See Good credit)

Many pay an unexpected price for deferred-interest deals -- About 1 in 5 people who sign up for deferred interest deals on big-ticket items actually wind up owing finance charges ... (See Deferred interest trap)

Deferred-interest, 0-percent financing 'deals' costly for many -- About 1 in 5 people who sign up for 0-percent, deferred interest deals wind up owing accumulated finance charges ... (See Deferred interest)

I'm buried in debt. Can I just stop making payments? -- If you're swamped with credit card debt, it may be tempting to stop making payments and hope the problem goes away. Sorry. It won't ... (See Stop paying)

Survey: Card satisfaction hits 7-year high -- Though impenetrable financial terms and opaque rewards programs still plague cardholders, we are increasingly satisfied with our plastic ... (See J.D. Power)

Credit card interest rates hold steady at 14.95% -- Aug. 21, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers held steady at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

How to pick a socially responsible credit card -- Consumers who value sustainability have two major credit card options: Affinity cards that donate to charities, and cards issued by financial institutions devoted to the concept of 'the triple bottom line' ... (See Donate)

How 'authorized user' status can help build US credit -- New to the U.S.? There are several ways to start building a good credit history, most notably by becoming an authorized user on another's credit card ... (See Authorized user)

Infographic: Gen Y embraces mobile bill pay, boomers like mail -- When it comes to paying bills, consumers -- especially young ones -- are embracing mobile, according to an August 2013 survey from Western Union. Yet more "old-fashioned" methods of payment still remain popular among all age groups ... (See Bill payment by generations)

Certegy fined $3.5 million for violating Fair Credit Reporting Act -- The FTC has accused credit reporting agency Certegy of maintaining and reporting inaccurate information about thousands of check-paying customers, resulting in a $3.5 million fine. ... (See Certegy)

Can I churn my Hilton credit cards for more sign-up bonuses? -- American Express and Citi credit cards that earn Hilton HHonors points are churnable -- meaning you can cancel them and later reapply to get a new sign-up bonus. But you need to know a few things first ... (See Churning)

Can you build business credit without a Social Security number? -- To apply for business credit, you will likely need to use your Social Security Number or an Employer Identification Number -- which you apply for using your SSN. ... (See SSN)

Don't share accounts with elderly parents -- Having a joint account with an elderly parent can have serious consequences, including being liable for debts, lawsuits and collection efforts ... (See Joint accounts)

Q&A with 'Heads in Beds' author Jacob Tomsky -- Have you ever stayed at a luxury hotel and wondered what's going on behind the scenes? In his new book, "Heads in Beds: A Reckless Memoir of Hotels, Hustles, and So-Called Hospitality," hotelier Jacob Tomsky dishes the dirt on the hospitality industry ... (See Dirt)

Can a car dealer garnish my wages after selling me a lemon? -- Every car owner's nightmare is to get stuck with a trouble-prone vehicle. Can a dealer garnish your wages if you can't afford to pay off the loan on a useless auto? ... (See Garnish)

8 steps to build your business credit profile -- While the recession has made it harder to avoid personal guarantees for business credit, building a strong business credit profile is still important ... (See Business credit)

NY Fed: debt squeeze eases on households -- While borrowing on cards increased, credit limits grew faster in the second quarter, leaving cardholders with more available spending power ... (See Debt and credit report)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.95 percent -- Aug. 14, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit score impact of settling past-due accounts -- When you have numerous credit accounts that are seriously past due, is the best solution to settle the accounts or try to pay them in full? ... (See Settle or pay in full?)

How to dispute unauthorized credit report inquiries -- If a negative item on your credit report isn't true, you dispute it. But did you know the same goes for credit report inquiries you don’t recognize or didn’t approve? ... (See Credit inquiries)

Point-of-sale pioneer Ron Klein looks back -- Ron Klein was heralded as the inventor of the mag stripe in a recent news article. Klein, now 78, is willing to cede credit for that but is keen to tell the story of how he pioneered credit card validation systems back in the 1960s. ... (See Ron Klein)

What's the better hotel credit card -- Hyatt or Marriott? -- Choosing the best hotel card is a matter of weighing each card's perks against your travel needs, as evaluating the pros and cons of each is an apples-to-oranges comparison ... (See Hotel cards)

Infographic: Consumers cutting back -- but also spending more -- Consumers are pinching pennies when it comes to small purchases, while opening their wallets for bigger ones, according to July 2013 research from Harris Interactive ... (See Saving while spending)

How a Bangladeshi entrepreneur can pay for international purchases -- A small business owner from Bangladesh is looking for a way to buy supplies and services from other countries. Bangladesh's central bank restricts international credit card transactions, but there are a few options ... (See Prepaids)

Pay off card charges before bill arrives -- If you budgeted for an item you put on plastic, pay it off right away instead of waiting for the bill to arrive. That way, you'll reduce any interest adding to the balance ... (See Interest charges)

How to get your adult children to leave the nest -- Instead of feathering their own financial nests, many parents who are retired or approaching retirement are going into debt and raiding their savings to support their young adult children -- all in the name of love ... (See Adult children)

Using money to self-medicate? -- Fallen into the emotional money trap? Recognizing the feelings behind impulsive spending can help reduce excessive consumption ... (See Curb the splurge)

Stroke, spending spree leaves family with debt emergency -- After his wife suffered a stroke, she racked up card debt. He may be able to argue diminished capacity to have it dismissed, but should be prepared to pay up ... (See Health debt)

Fed: Card balances fell in June -- Credit card balances were down in June, pulling back from a strong upward surge the month before, despite an increase in consumer spending ... (See G.19)

Credit card interest rates dip to 14.95% -- Aug. 6, 2013: Average rates on new credit card offers fell to 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report Aug. 7, 2013)

When being an authorized user is useless -- Her brother added her to his card to boost her credit, but the issuer doesn't report card activity for authorized users. What are her options? ... (See Authorized user)

Historic newspaper archive reveals earliest mentions of credit cards -- Consumer credit in the U.S. has its roots in the late 19th century, and the earliest printed mentions of credit shows we confronted today's challenges then ... (See Credit in U.S. history)

The best card for a long stay in Vietnam? -- A rewards card that doesn't charge foreign transaction fees and is widely accepted is the best bet for a three-month trip to Vietnam. Prepaid travel cards are an option, too ... (See Vietnam)

Fed: banks ease up on credit limits -- Banks remain wary about issuing new cards but are easing their grip on credit limits, the Federal Reserve's survey of bank loan officers reported ... (See Credit limits eased)

How 'mindfulness' can curb impulse spending -- By pausing to reflect, you can take a step back and make choices about what you're going to buy based on reason, rather than impulse ... (See Mindfulness)

If your company fails, your credit card rate can rise -- Your business is shuttered and you're left with credit card debt. Now the issuer is hiking your interest rate. Is it really allowed to do that? Most likely, yes. Here's what you can do ... (See Business card rate hike)

Infographic: Early shoppers push up back-to-school season -- Families are getting an increasingly early start on back-to-school shopping, according to a survey from the National Retail Federation ... (See Back to school)

Should I tap into my 401(k) to buy my retirement haven? -- As you near retirement, it can be tempting to use 401(k) distributions to fund big purchases. There are, however, lots of rules to follow and tax implications that you must be aware of before making a decision. ... (See Tapping 401(k) )

Daughter racks up debt on deceased dad's card -- Not knowing she was just an authorized user, a daughter continued to use her dad's card after he died. Now the issuer closed the card and wants quick repayment ... (See Authorized user)

Swipe fee battle renewed after court ruling -- Merchants won a victory in their long-running battle with banks over debit card swipe fees, potentially raising consumer costs for checking-related services ... (See Merchant comsumer debit fees)

How to protect a foster child from ID theft -- Foster kids are even more at risk for identity theft than the general population. Help protect yourself or a young person you know by following these tips ... (See Tips)

Have I fallen prey to identity theft? -- It's relatively easy to find out if you've fallen victim to identity theft, given the availability of credit reports and online billing statements. Clearing up an identity theft issue, however, is more difficult and may require contacting local authorities or placing a freeze on your credit report. ... (See Fraud)

Foster children get help in combating ID theft -- A 2011 federal law says when foster children turn 16, child welfare agencies must help them get annual credit reports and clear up any mistakes. States are now implementing programs to do just that ... (See Foster kids and ID theft)

Fed keeps interest rates low -- As expected, the Federal Open Market Committee voted Wednesday to keep short-term interest rates low ... (See FOMC)

Rates remain locked at 14.96% -- July 31, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained stuck at 14.96 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates unchanged a 6th week)

Summer vacation mistakes that can cost you -- Daydreaming about a lazy day at the beach? Just make sure you don't make a vacation planning mistake that could set your finances back for months to come ... (See Vacation mistakes)

Will a debt management plan hurt your credit score? -- When you enter a debt management plan, one of the requirements is to close open card accounts. How will that action affect your credit score? ... (See DMP)

Infographic: Men and women rate each other's financial strengths -- A survey from FleishmanHillard and Hearst Magazines asked men and women to rate each other's financial strengths. And the genders didn't always see eye to eye ... (See Rating the genders)

How does the Southwest Rapid Rewards card stack up? -- Domestic airline Southwest is often overlooked by rewards-chasers because you generally get more bang for your mile with international flights. But if you're primarily interested in U.S. flights, the Rapid Rewards card is worth a look ... (See Southwest Rapid Rewards)

Congress aims to level the online gambling playing field -- Two bills being considered in Congress would regulate poker and other forms of online gambling, and could impose consistency on a patchwork of state laws. But it's a complex subject that blends gaming, morality, money-laundering and credit cards ... (See Online gambling)

Does it make sense to refinance business credit card debt? -- Small businesses with good credit may benefit from transferring business card debt to a lower-interest loan or 0-percent interest card ... (See Refinance)

How credit scores impact some student loan approvals -- Planning to apply for student loans? You might want to check your credit. If you’re applying for PLUS loans or private student loans, your credit history counts ... (See Student loans and credit)

Don't blow your inheritance -- A large inheritance can create the temptation to spend and lend on a large scale. How do you balance your wants and needs (and those of others close to you) while keeping your newly obtained wealth intact? ... (See Inheritance)

Husband won't stop charging on joint card -- Sharing a joint credit card can be hard if one spouse uses the card too often and can't pay off the balance. Do they kill the card or get will that make things worse? ... (See Joint credit)

Rules of the road for improving your credit mix -- Having greater diversity in the types of credit you use can nudge your credit score up -- as long as you make your payments on time ... (See Credit mix)

The path to a lower interest rate -- Most banks and credit unions tie their credit cards' interest rates to the prime rate, but knowing the prime rate alone won't lead to lowering yours ... (See Your rate)

Credit card interest rates remain at 14.96% for fifth week -- July 24, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged Wednesday for the fifth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Tattoo debt: Body art can create red ink -- Tattoos can come with surprising costs, both on the front and the back end. The best artists aren't cheap, and the worst can produce pricey mistakes ... (See Tattoo debt)

What to look for in an emergency credit card -- Unless you have huge sums of cash, have an emergency card handy -- one that won't cause extra problems if you actually use it ... (See Emergency card)

Infographic: Parents shelling out more on kids' summer fun -- Parents are willing to pay up to keep their children busy this summer, according to July's American Express Spending & Saving Tracker ... (See Summer spending)

Bankruptcies continue to fall -- As the eighth anniversary of a bankruptcy reform law approaches, filings in the first half of 2013 have fallen 14 percent from the same period one year ago ... (See Bankruptcy filings)

Booking via travel website may affect reward miles, perks -- If you use a co-branded card to buy tickets through a third-party aggregator such as Travelocity or Orbitz, you may give up bonus miles offered for booking direct. But with a little work, you should be able to claim most of the perks ... (See Online agents)

Credit reports now show your credit card bill-paying habits -- Credit bureaus add "trended data" to credit reports showing whether you carry a credit card balance, giving card issuers and others a more detailed portrait of your financial habits ... (See Trended data)

Repayment, settlement, bankruptcy: Facing debt from failed business -- A business owner has unpaid credit card debt worth thousands. Should she settle, file for bankruptcy or something else? ... (See Business debt)

Managing your fashion-forward teen's clothing allowance -- Keeping up with the latest fashion trends is a high priority for many teens. A clothing allowance is a great way for a parent to teach fiscal responsibility and keep the family's fashion budget under control. ... (See Teen's clothing allowance)

Money experts give advice to their younger selves -- We asked financial professionals to imagine they could go back in time and pass on to their younger selves the wisdom about money they've gained ... (See Advice)

Found your lost purse? Good, but don't use those canceled cards -- If that lost purse or wallet turns up and you've already reported the cards missing, it's too late. Wait for the new ones, and next time, don't carry so many ... (See Lost purse)

Getting your deposit back when a company goes bankrupt -- Your catering company has gone belly-up just before your wedding, taking your deposit with it. All's not lost, if you used a credit card, but beware -- those refunds can be time-consuming and tricky to reclaim ... (See Post-bankruptcy deposit refunds)

Even with very old debt, don't ignore collection efforts -- The statute of limitations doesn't bar collectors from trying to get you to pay old debts, but you have rights and can stiff-arm them easily ... (See Old debt)

Infographic: Who’s checking your credit score? -- When it comes to which types of companies may check your credit score before approving you for their products or services, many consumers are in the dark. ... (See Credit score)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates stuck at 14.96% for 4th straight week -- July 17, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates unchanged a 4th week)

How employee salary advances work -- Occasional emergency bridge loans from an employer can be OK, but regular pay advances are fraught with perils that can spill into the workplace ... (See Salary advances)

Help! My husband's ruining my credit -- They opened a joint credit card together and then her husband went "crazy" charging things they couldn't afford. To make matters worse, he stopped paying the bill ... (See Joint credit)

How do I get rid of my dormant AmEx Green card without hurting my score? -- If you drop an inactive credit card to save on annual fees, should you ask for a credit limit increase on other cards to mitigate damage to your credit score? ... (See Rewards shuffle)

Didn't make that donation to charity? Watch out for fraud -- If you see a small donation to a charity on your credit card but don't remember making the gift, you may be a victim of fraud. Small transactions like these are often tests to see if a stolen card number is working ... (See Charity donation scam)

Q&A with 'Bootstrapper' author Mardi Jo Link -- Her book chronicles how she mended a broken heart and literally saved her Northern Michigan farm with alcohol, Buddhism and hard-won financial acumen ... (See Bootstrapper)

Will accepting credit cards help my business's cash flow? -- A survey shows that 83 percent of businesses that accept credit cards ring up more sales -- with most reporting higher revenues and faster payments. ... (See Cash flow)

What to know before jumping into a rent-to-own lease -- It's both a lease to rent a home and a deal to buy it, rolled into a single document, so it has more moving parts and quirks than either document individually. In other words, study up and get expert help ... (See Rent-to-own)

Internet tax law could create challenges for small businesses -- If the Marketplace Fairness Act passes, running a small Internet store could get more complicated. Business owners would potentially have to collect sales tax for every state they ship into ... (See Internet tax)

Divorce and card debt in community property states -- She's an authorized user on her ex-husband's card, but since they live in a community property state, she's not off the hook ... (See Divorce debt and community property )

Infographic: Those who don't haggle are missing out -- Although fewer than half of shoppers haggle, those who do are rewarded, according to a survey from Consumer Reports ... (See Haggling)

Oops! I bought something with my 0-percent balance transfer card -- If you transferred a balance to a 0-percent card and then bought something with it, you'll need to do some fancy minimum payment math to avoid interest charges ... (See Oops)

CFPB provides debt collection sample letters -- The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issues five sample letters to help consumers practice self-defense against unfair debt collection practices ... (See Debt collection sample letters)

Watchdog agency opens doors to complaints about debt collectors -- The government's consumer watchdog issued warning notices to the collection industry about illegal tactics on the day it began taking complaints about collectors ... (See Debt collection)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates don't budge -- July 10, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Credit card weekly rate report)

4 signs your teen isn't ready for credit cards -- Getting your teen behind the wheel of a car was scary enough, so do you think your kid is ready to handle the responsibility of a credit card? ... (See Teens and credit)

Is daughter liable for shared card debt with mom? -- Mom tried to boost her daughter's credit by putting her on several credit cards, but then Mom passed away. Who has to pay the balances? ... (See Shared credit)

Card delinquencies hit 22-year low -- Credit card delinquencies hit their lowest levels since June 1990 during the first quarter of this year, reflecting a stronger economy and more frugal consumers, the American Bankers Association said. ... (See low credit card delinquent accounts)

FTC penalizes world's largest debt collector -- The Federal Trade commission accused collection company with global reach of calling people repeatedly and failing to verify debts. ... (See FTC )

Average credit card debt statistics -- Depending on how the average is measured and who's doing the measuring, Americans are either doing pretty well when it comes to managing our credit cards, or horribly ... (See Average card debt)

CFPB steps in to save service members money -- More than 50,000 active-duty service members who participated in a big bank's specialty auto loan program are due a refund ... (See Military auto loan refund)

Where to look for credit, funding for minority-owned business -- For a young, African-American entrepreneur looking to start a small business, credit can be tight -- especially if you're still paying off student loans. Here's where to look for advice, and money ... (See Minority business)

Fed: Credit card balances spike in May -- Balances on credit cards were up in May, the Fed reported, as jobs and home values showed strength ... (See credit card balances up)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.96% -- July 5, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Why not leave country and bail on student loans? -- Sure, you can leave your debts behind -- and your family and friends, too. But there are repayment options that can help ease your burden. ... (See Student loans)

Ken Ilgunas' unique approach to avoiding college debt -- He lived in van for two years while attending Duke University with the goal of graduating with no debt. Now he's written a book about his philosophy and experience ... (See Ken Ilgunas)

Servicemembers Act helps, but soldier, straighten up your debt -- The Servicemembers Act limits rates for loans to active-duty military personnel, but controlling debt should be a soldier's first financial duty ... (See Servicemembers Act)

How canceled cards impact credit scores -- When a card is canceled, the only way it can hurt your credit score is by reducing your credit utilization ratio -- or if you behaved badly with it ... (See Canceled card)

Average American expects to be debt free by age 53 -- Americans are optimistic about achieving a clean slate before retirement, but 1 in 10 expects to never be independent of debt ... (See Debt-free)

Jaron Lanier Q&A: Consumers, take back your data -- The computer visionary and influential thinker sees individual and widespread economic risk in turning details of our lives into commodities ... (See Jaron Lanier Q&A)

Groceries bought at Wal-Mart, Costco don't earn extra rewards -- Generally, processors do not count big-box stores (Target and Wal-Mart) or warehouse clubs (Costco) as grocery stores. If you do the bulk of your stocking up with those retailers, you'd be better off with a rewards card co-branded with one of them ... (See Rewards)

Infographic: Millennials swap credit cards for student loans -- More young consumers are turning their backs on credit cards and piling on student loan debt, according to research from FICO ... (See Millennials ditch credit cards, pile on student loans)

Should you take on credit card debt to pay for a new employee? -- A new boutique owner is considering hiring a part-time salesperson so she can devote more time to marketing efforts. But to do so, she'd need to charge expenses such as inventory on a credit card. Is it worth it? ... (See Hiring)

Using plastic to pay off student loans: A bad idea -- Using one or more credit cards to get out from under the burden of student loan payments can seem tempting, but it's a step in the wrong direction ... (See Student loans)

Sister opens cards using Mom's identity -- One sister abuses Mom's trust by charging thousands to cards opened using Mom's Social Security number. The other sister keeps it a secret ... (See Stealing Mom's ID)

Are your finances ready for a 'babymoon'? -- Need a little alone time before that bundle of joy arrives? Time to start planning your "babymoon" -- just make sure you don't add to your stress by spending too much ... (See Babymoon planning)

Infographic: How we spend our gift cards -- Gift cards don’t tend to gather much dust in your wallet, according to a June 18 survey from the Retail Gift Card Association. ... (See Gift cards)

Settling a debt? Verify it, and get everything in writing -- If you want to settle a debt with a collector for less than owed, do it safely and permanently by following these steps ... (See Settling debt the right way)

Bill to curb employer credit check passes N.Y. Assembly -- Afraid your bad credit may be holding you back from a great job? That may soon not be a concern for job-hunting New Yorkers, as the Credit Privacy in Employment Act passed the New York Assembly on June 24. ... (See Credit checks)

DOMA ruling cuts both ways financially -- The Supreme Court's ruling may spur same-sex couples toward marriage, but the financial consequences of such unions aren't all favorable ... (See DOMA and dollars)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- June 26, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

6-step credit-building plan for a struggling single mom -- A low-income, young single mom with school and another baby coming wants to handle credit wisely, but she'd better have a plan to avoid debt ... (See New credit)

Looking for Mr. FICO: Singles using credit score to filter dates -- Your astrological sign? Pah. A growing number of today's singles employ a FICO filter, using credit scores to judge whether a date is responsible ... (See Creditworthy dating)

5 bankruptcy myths busted -- Only deadbeats, cheats and crooks file for bankruptcy, right? Nothing could be further from the truth, say the folks who deal with bankruptcy day to day ... (See Bankruptcy myths)

Have job, will travel, need points: Best bets for hotel rewards cards -- Marriott Rewards consistently wins travelers' awards for best hotel rewards in the Americas, but there are other cards to also consider if you'll be traveling a lot for business ... (See Hotel rewards)

Private jet fliers increasingly turn to prepaid cards -- A growing number of vendors sell prepaid private jet cards that let customers budget ahead and guarantee hourly rates for their luxury travel ... (See Jet cards)

Resist tapping retirement funds for small-business financing -- Starting a business in your 50s brings special considerations. Step away from the retirement savings and don't forget about health care costs ... (See Startup financing )

Stretching a food budget to the extreme -- Stretching out a food budget of only $100 to feed a family of three for a month will require you to admit you need help, and then throw every trick in the cookbook at the problem ... (See Extreme food budget stretching)

Pet wellness plans touted to spread out vet costs -- Some snarl, others purr at the idea of evening out pet care spending; evaluate all the costs and what's covered before signing up ... (See Pet wellness plans)

Old car debt hounds ex-wife -- What do you do do when your wages are garnished to pay for a repossessed car that was jointly owned by you and your ex? ... (See Joint debt)

Want to help a relative in debt? Do it carefully -- Sure, you can help a relative overwhelmed by debt. Help her negotiate, consolidate -- but be careful about taking that debt on yourself ... (See Relative in debt)

How to spend money to buy happiness -- "Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending" co-author Michael Norton says you can buy happiness if you know what to buy ... (See Happy Money)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.96 percent -- June 19, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers rose this week for the first time in more than a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Fed signals that rate hikes remain in distant future -- The Federal Open Market Committee voted to keep interest rates at ultra-low levels amid speculation that stimulus measures are nearing a turning point ... (See rates remain low)

First credit card tips and advice -- An 18-year-old wants to know just how a credit card works and how it should be used before she applies for one ... (See First credit card)

5 top excuses (and 5 top fixes) for paying bills late -- Excuses abound for paying bills late, but none do you any good. We identify the top five -- and a way to overcome each one ... (See Bill paying moves )

Credit CARD Act: The next generation -- The federal watchdog agency is reviewing the 2009 law's impact; consumer groups are urging a host of fixes, enhancements ... (See Post-CARD Act)

Infographic: Best, worst states for credit card delinquencies -- In what could be a sign of economic recovery, bank card lending is on the rise, according to numbers from credit bureau Experian ... (See Card delinquencies)

What are the best debit cards for ATM withdrawals overseas? -- ATM fees overseas may come from the bank issuing the card, from the ATM itself, or from card networks like Visa and MasterCard. A few debit cards rise to the top when it comes to keeping these fees in check ... (See ATM fees)

Credit dispute process fix coming soon -- Disputing a credit report error? The bureaus will no longer discard your evidence; it will be scanned in and forwarded to the lender or debt collector ... (See Disputes)

Defaulting on some of your cards risks losing them all -- If your business is failing and you default on several credit cards, the issuers of your other cards will know about it and may cut you off -- but you have ways to escape the jam ... (See Damage reduction)

Dealing with $8,000 card debt hidden from husband -- Whether you reveal the hidden debt to your husband is up to you, but you need to change habits to stop it from growing and get a plan to pay it off ... (See Hidden debt)

Foreign exchange students can build a US credit score -- A 20-year-old Chinese student living in the U.S. wants to build an American credit score, and she can: Scores aren't just for U.S. citizens ... (See Foreign student scores)

How to teach your son about money -- While financial literacy for women and girls has gotten a lot of attention in recent years, boys have their own issues. Here are some tips for teaching your son about credit and finance ... (See Money lessons)

6 money experts share dad's best credit advice -- Dads often give advice on more than just proper tire pressure. Their words and deeds lay out a financial path for their children, and these six experts share theirs ... (See Dads' advice)

Old debt, new collector: Negotiate? Ignore? Or pay up? -- When an old debt resurfaces as you're trying to make a credit comeback, getting it listed as paid in full does the most benefit to your credit, but the most harm to your cash flow ... (See Old debt, new collector)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- June 12, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained fixed this week at 14.95%, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Options for card approval without a credit history -- At 21, he was turned down for a secured card. His grandfather offers to co-sign on a card with him, but will that be his best choice? ... (See Young credit)

6 ways to protect your credit after a natural disaster -- While your first priority after experiencing a life-altering tragedy may be to rebuild, ignoring your debts can hamper your recovery ... (See Natural disaster)

U.S. rolling out chip card technology, ever so slowly -- Rely on your American magnetic-stripe cards for international travel and you could run into problems. Many other countries now use on more secure chip technology. But the U.S. is moving in that direction ... (See EMV card update)

When bankruptcy freezes an airline credit card, what happens to the miles? -- If a rewards card is frozen during bankruptcy, you may still have access to most of the points you've earned. It depends on whether the card is co-branded with a travel partner ... (See Salvaging miles)

Beware: Risk of data breaches rises when you travel -- The odds your card's data will be taken rise when you're on holiday for an obvious reason: You like to hang out at the same places the cyberthieves do ... (See Data breaches)

Infographic: Americans pick computers over financial planners -- When it comes to financial planning, Americans are turning to computer programs over living, breathing financial advisers, a Gallup poll has found ... (See Computers reign over financial planners)

Finding a free bankruptcy lawyer for business, consumer debt -- If you're considering bankruptcy but can't afford a lawyer, there are a few options available for you. Some bankruptcy attorneys do pro bono work, or you may be able to file the papers on your own ... (See Filing for free)

Fed: Card balances ticked up in April -- Balances on credit cards rose in April, marking a rebound from March, amid signs of improvement in jobs and housing. ... (See Card balances rise)

Divorcing? Your kids don't need a money martyr -- Sally sharply arches her eyebrow at a one-sided divorce settlement that gives him the house, her the debt -- and a self-imposed college fund obligation on top of it all ... (See Divorce and debt)

Q&A: ESPN's Mike Greenberg takes a write turn with novel -- The death of a friend inspired the popular sports talk show host to try his hand as a novelist ... (See Mike Greenberg)

If you have the choice, pay off that big debt -- When a generous uncle offers to pay off a $30,000 credit card debt, say thanks and do it -- then figure out how to pay him back and stay out of debt ... (See Pay off debt)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates fall to 14.95 percent -- June 5, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers slipped this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See interest rates decline)

Peer-to-peer loans catch on for credit card debt consolidation -- Peer-to-peer loans -- made by individuals to other individuals -- are booming as a debt consolidation tool. Though they can be a deal, they aren't for everyone. Here's how they work, what to expect ... (See P2P)

Wife of inmate worries about his card debt -- Her husband is in prison for five years, and he left behind $7,000 in card debt that she can't pay. Will she be pursued for the debt by collectors? ... (See Debt and prison)

Nontraditional borrowing alternatives to online P2P loans -- Peer-to-peer lending works for people with solid credit, but if you have a history of late payments, there are other creative alternatives to credit card loans ... (See Creative, nontraditional loan choices)

IRS' oversight of credit counseling fails -- The IRS unit under fire for Tea Party scrutiny has been unable in more than eight years to strip nonprofit status from the puppet of a for-profit company ... (See Nonprofit dodge)

Credit card churning: not a game to play while house-hunting -- "Churning" -- taking on new credit cards to get sign-up bonuses and then canceling the cards -- will ding your credit score. The hit is usually minor but it's not a smart idea if you're thinking of buying a house soon ... (See Card churning caution)

Congress considers relief for credit damage from medical bills -- Debt caused by medical bills is special and should wait 120 days before it's reported late on credit reports, according to legislation introduced in Congress ... (See Medical debt)

Are there any special lending resources for women entrepreneurs? -- The number of small businesses owned by women is growing rapidly. But women don't seek or get bank financing at the rate men do. The SBA offers special help for female entrepreneurs who need loans ... (See Businesswomen)

Credit report complaints highlight errors -- One out of five people who complained about their credit reports said they contain information that does not belong to them, according to newly released figures ... (See Credit report errors)

Stuck with card debt with no job, assets -- She has no work or personal property and cannot afford to pay her card bill. Can she still be pursued for the debt even if she has nothing? ... (See Card debt)

Infographic: New grads wish they'd saved more for college -- The high cost of college has given the class of 2013 some financial perspective, a survey has found ... (See College costs)

People are managing cards better, survey finds -- Americans are getting better at paying off their credit card bills and avoiding interest charges, but about a third are still struggling to pay more than the minimum ... (See Financial survey)

Same-sex marriage means gay couples get joint custody of debt -- As more states allow same-sex marriage, gay couples discover they must take on one of matrimony's biggest legal burdens: a partner's debt ... (See Same-sex marriage)

How card companies report credit utilization to bureaus -- Card issuers vary in how they report card use, which can affect your credit score. Usually, it's no big deal, but it becomes one when you want new credit` ... (See Credit use)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat -- May 29, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

9 tips for managing ADHD and debt -- Constructing and sticking to a budget and determining which bills need to be paid and when can be especially challenging for those with ADD/ADHD ... (See ADHD and debt)

Can old debt threaten a great credit score? -- His credit score is in the mid-700s already, but a debt collector is calling about an old debt. Will ignoring the calls threaten his creditworthiness? ... (See Credit score)

New card options let travelers avoid foreign transaction fees -- Most U.S. credit card issuers tack a fee of up to 3 percent onto purchases made overseas. Those fees can really add up but there are some new ways to avoid them ... (See Fee-free cards)

Should I give more employees company cards? -- In a small business, handing out credit cards to everyone can create headaches. You'll typically share responsibility for the account with the business. But there are times when giving out more cards can make everyone's lives easier ... (See Employee cards)

A diet of fresh fruits and vegetables needn't eat up your budget -- Working more fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet is healthy, but it need not be expensive, if you shop seasonally and buy carefully ... (See Frugal veggies)

Will card debt scare off student loan lenders? -- With high card debt, no job and a desire to return to school, will qualifying for a student loan be insurmountable? ... (See Student loan)

Q&A with author Frank Ahearn on the art of disappearing -- This skip-tracer turned skip-maker charges $42,000 minimum to help people disappear. He doesn't take credit cards. In fact, his first move will be to destroy yours ... (See Frank Ahearn)

Keeping your credit score high in retirement -- As retirement approaches, it's time to review your collection of credit cards to make sure they're still working for you, and to keep debt low ... (See Credit score in retirement)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.98 percent -- May 22, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers shot up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rates)

Credit-building tips for new US citizen -- He opened a U.S. card with a passport and business account. Now that he's moved here and has an SSN, he wants to know how to build a good credit score ... (See Credit tips)

FTC targets cash-reload code scams -- The FTC has proposed banning telemarketers from taking payments via cash reload codes that are used to fund prepaid cards. The codes make it too easy for fraudsters to take cash without leaving a trace ... (See Cash reload)

How to earn more travel rewards without getting a new card -- The fastest way to rack up credit card rewards is through sign-up bonuses. If you don't want a new card, there are still ways to boost your earning potential ... (See Maximize rewards)

Should you charge that new pet? -- Pet regret? If you put that new furry friend on plastic, you may be able to get a refund, but it all depends on exactly where you bought it and what went wrong ... (See Pets)

Co-signer, joint account holder, guarantor: Know the difference -- Thinking about sharing a card account with someone? Take heed. Your liability for the debt could vary greatly depending upon the type of account you choose ... (See Shared accounts)

Should we charge our customers to use credit cards? -- Credit card surcharges are now legal, along with minimum purchase requirements for customers who want to use credit cards. But for some convenience store owners, is the money worth the business they'll lose from irritated customers? ... (See Surcharges)

Doing the math to calculate your retirement savings goal -- While everyone's desired retirement goal is different, you can, with just a bit of math, come up with a rough idea of your savings goal. Here's how ... (See Retirement savings goal)

Student loan co-signer on the hook for delinquency -- A wife co-signed her husband's student loans, which he defaulted on when he lost his job. Should she pay off the balance or not? ... (See Student loan)

How to pick a bankruptcy attorney -- That’s it, you’re done. After struggling to pay your debts, you’re ready to consider bankruptcy. It’s time to contact a lawyer to represent you, but which one? ... (See Bankruptcy attorney)

Proposed rule could help kids replace stolen Social Security numbers -- The Social Security Administration is considering easing the process for replacing stolen SSNs for children 13 and younger, who are increasingly targeted by identity thieves ... (See New SSNs for kids)

Two balance transfers means payment dilemma -- The federal CARD Act of 2009 created rules about how payments should be allocated when there are multiple rates, but not for multiple balances ... (See Payment allocation)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates hold at 14.94 percent -- May 15, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See May 15, 2013: Card rates hold at 14.94 percent)

Does canceling an unactivated card hurt credit scores? -- She applied for a low-limit, high annual fee card and never activated it. Now she wants to cancel it. How will that impact her credit score? ... (See Credit score)

Study: Credit card debt causes people to forgo medical care -- A study by a pair of University of Michigan sociologists finds people who are ill and don't seek treatment because of the cost are more likely to have credit card debt than other forms of debt ... (See Medical care and card debt)

Infographic: Young adults most optimistic about finances -- Americans from age 18 to 29 have an optimistic outlook on their financial futures. Things look significantly gloomier to older Americans, however ... (See Financial outlook)

NY Fed: Credit card balances reach new low -- Consumers resumed paying down their card balances in the first quarter of 2013, the New York Fed reported, and delinquencies improved ... (See NY Fed)

If my oldest card's rewards aren't paying off, should I cancel? -- It's usually not worth shelling out for an annual fee if a card's rewards don't at least pay for it. But if that card happens to be your oldest one, will canceling the card hurt your credit score? ... (See Oldest card)

Survey: Consumers still don't understand credit scores -- Women have more credit knowledge, says a study released Monday, but few of us really understand what makes us creditworthy ... (See Credit survey)

When does it pay for consultants to accept credit cards? -- If you have a consulting business, customers may want to pay with credit cards. Providing that convenience isn't free, but it could be worthwhile ... (See Consultants accepting cards)

10 tips for having a frugal wedding -- Start by deciding on one or two items most important to you both. Splurge on those, scrimp on the rest and you'll avoid a runaway bridal budget ... (See Frugal wedding)

California blasts Chase for robo-signing -- California's attorney general accused Chase Bank of using false documents in court cases to collect credit card debts ... (See Chase robo-signing suit)

Infographic: How Robo-signing works in credit card debt -- When creditors mechanically and automatically certify that credit card debt is real without any documentary evidence, it's called robo-signing, and the practice is both widespread and controversial ... (See Robo-signing credit card debt)

How to ask for a credit limit increase -- Credit card issuers determine your limit based on what they think you can repay. If you want to raise your limit it helps to have your argument nailed down before you ask ... (See Credit limit increase)

Pay off debt vs. settle it: Which is better for your credit score? -- With $4,000 in card debt and five months behind on the bill, she wonders if settling the bill or paying it off is better for her credit score ... (See Credit score and settlement)

$45 million heist shows vulnerability of prepaid cards -- Prepaid debit cards are quickly growing in popularity among consumers, but the global conspiracy that stole $45 million from two Middle Eastern banks shows that they’re also attracting attention from another element: criminals ... (See Heist)

7 tips for saving time, money when shopping online -- As online shopping has evolved, so have the ways in which you can use the tool wisely. These seven tips will keep time on the clock and money in your wallet ... (See 7 online shopping tips)

Debt lingers on credit report even after garnishment, repayment -- Through garnishment, an old debt has been repaid, but the credit damage can linger for years. The good news? It fades with time ... (See Old debt and credit reports)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates rise to 14.94 percent -- May 8, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers ticked up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rare report)

Will paying off a bad loan early boost credit score? -- If you can afford to pay off a high-cost loan, do it. Don't stick with a bad loan in the false belief that it will help build your credit score ... (See Car loan)

10 ways to get more from your credit card through social media -- Social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube can help you resolve problems, find perks and maximize the benefits you get from your credit cards ... (See Cards and social media )

Can you apply for a business card -- before you own a business? -- If you’ve checked out the sweet perks that come with small-business rewards cards, you may be tempted to apply, even if you’re not a business owner ... (See Business cards)

Credit card balances fall in March -- Consumers used plastic less in March amid gloomy reports from the job front and a deceleration in spending ... (See G.19)

Infographic: The money topics your kids wish you'd talk about -- Most parents say they talk about money regularly with their kids. Their children, however, don't think these conversations are enough ... (See Family finances)

What’s the best low-hassle cash-back card? -- If you travel a lot by car, airline reward cards won't do you much good. You'll be better off with cash-back cards that offer rewards in driver-friendly categories ... (See Cash back)

5 reasons budgets fail - and what to do about them -- Budgets can be a valuable tool to control spending, but many fail. Be wary of these five budget-bursting culprits, and learn how to prevent yours from flopping ... (See Why budgets fail)

How to improve your chances of getting an SBA loan -- A banker will look at many factors when evaluating whether to grant you an SBA-guaranteed loan, from your personal credit to the profitability of your business. Here's how you can prepare to apply ... (See SBA)

Is wife liable for ex's card debt? -- When a spouse has thousands in secret card debt and then files for divorce, exactly who is responsible for repaying that debt? ... (See Ex's card debt)

Carrots offered, sticks abandoned: Card issuers lure late payers -- If you run a balance on your credit card and even maybe pays late sometimes, credit card issuers would like your business. To lure you, they're offering rewards for paying on time and reprieves from late fees ... (See Procrastinator's paradise?)

Help! My sneaky sis used my credit card, damaged my credit -- When family is involved in fraudulent card use, the choice is tough: Silently suffer the credit consequences or rat out a relative ... (See Fraud)

Scared of Big Brother? Too late, says 'Big Data' co-author -- As more companies tap into the huge amounts of data to measure consumer behavior, "Big Data" co-author Viktor Mayer-Schonberger says it's not really a bad thing ... (See Big Data)

Fed holds line on interest rates -- The Federal Reserve's rate-setting committee voted to continue its low-rate policy in the face of stubborn unemployment ... (See Federal Reserve low intrest rate)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.93 percent -- May 1, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

CFPB changes stay-at-home spouse rule -- The federal government's consumer agency has finalized a rule change to make it easier for nonworking, stay-at-home spouses to get their own credit cards ... (See Stay-at-home spouses)

Why stealing your dead BFF's identity is wrong -- Her best friend dies, so she "offers" to help the widower out by doing his finances. Then she applies for credit in her deceased friend's name as an "experiment." Hmmm. ... (See Fraud)

2013 survey of balance transfer offers -- CreditCards.com's annual balance transfer offer survey finds fees are falling, but a new breed of tempting hybrid cards is on the rise ... (See Balance transfer survey)

Can I get more rewards by using my hotel's app? -- Hotel chains are creating smartphone apps that allow you to reserve rooms, find info and maybe even earn triple points -- all on the go ... (See Hotel apps)

Infographic: Financial crisis inspired better money habits -- The financial crisis that started in 2007 may have forced many investors to learn things the hard way, according to research from Fidelity Investments ... (See Recession lessons)

Rebuilding credit to run your new business -- If your personal credit is in the basement and you want to start up a business, getting a business card will be tough -- but not impossible. Here's how ... (See Rebuild credit)

Card add-on products stage a comeback -- Add-on services like payment protection are expected to rebound from regulators' smackdown ... (See Card add-ons)

Is there any such thing as good debt for a small business? -- Debt is often associated with poor planning or being in financial straits. But for a small business, there are times when it's smart to use debt as a financing option. Knowing when is the tricky part ... (See 'Good debt' for business)

Stop the debt shuffle, and figure out why you owe so much -- You have $55,000 in card debt. Now you want to borrow against a life insurance policy? Stop. Look at why you're in debt before you go any deeper ... (See Debt shuffle)

Debt pay-off choices: Less now or a lot later -- You can save now by paying an old debt at a discount, but consider your credit over the long run before making up your mind ... (See Pay debt now or later?)

Withdrawing vs. borrowing from 401(k) to pay credit card debt -- When downsizing or job loss makes credit card debt unbearable, the 401(k) money looks tempting. But whether you take it or borrow against it, know the consequences ... (See 401(k))

Feds crack down on payday loans, deposit advances -- Banks and storefront lenders will face new rules on small-dollar loans to protect borrowers ... (See Payday loan rules)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates fall to 14.93 percent -- April 24, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers dipped this week for the first time in more than two months, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 24, 2103: Rates fall to 14.93%)

When does bad debt fall off credit reports? -- If you have debts that went into collections and were later discharged in bankruptcy, when can you expect those marks to be erased from your credit reports? ... (See Debts)

6 crucial credit questions you should know answers to -- Not keeping current on the state of your finances can have dire consequences. Here are six money questions everyone should know the answers to ... (See 6 credit questions)

Infographic: Most people won't discuss credit card debt -- Credit card debt is the subject people least want to discuss with a stranger, according to a CreditCards.com poll ... (See Credit card debt)

How can I upgrade to a chip card before a trip to Europe? -- Customer service tells a traveler he won't need a smart-chip card in Europe. But many kiosks won't accept cards without them. There are a couple of avenues left to pursue to get an upgrade without having to apply for a whole new card ... (See Chip-and-PIN cards)

Fed study: Recession really changed our spending habits -- We didn't just have our credit cards taken away during the recession, we gave them up. So says a new New York Fed study, which says the historic drop in debt was at least partly the result of households tightening their belts ... (See Fed study)

Will my husband's business card debt hurt my credit after divorce? -- You could be responsible for payments due on your spouse's small business credit card, even after you divorce. The answer lies in your state's divorce laws, the credit card issuer's policies and whether you signed the card agreement ... (See His business, your debt?)

FTC fraud survey: 1 in 10 American adults swindled -- Weight-loss scams, prize promotions, membership rip-offs lead the phony pack in the Federal Trade Commission's survey of swindles ... (See FTC fraud survey)

Will canceling cards hurt a great credit score? -- Her credit score is 790, but with seven credit cards open, she wonders if she can cancel some without hurting her score ... (See Canceling cards)

Chapter 13 bankruptcy: How it works -- Unlike Chapter 7 liquidation plans, Chapter 13s give filers a chance to pay off debts over three to five years -- but they rarely turn out as planned ... (See Chapter 13 bankruptcy)

Getting your family to eat generic grocery store brands -- When your family already likes the taste of a name brand, switching to a generic store brand isn't easy. But with some sleuthing, you can improve your odds ... (See Store brands)

Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain at 14.95 percent for ninth week -- April 17, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers have stalled out, and remained at 14.95 percent for the ninth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See April 17: Rates at 14.95% for 9th straight week)

Late fees inflate balance of forgotten card -- She opened a card, charged $100 and then Hurricane Sandy hit and she forgot all about it. Now it's in a collector's hands and the balance is $300 ... (See Card default)

Robo-signed collection cases under fire -- Practices that let debt buyers win collection judgments with just hurriedly signed affidavits appear headed for a major overhaul ... (See Robo-signed debt collection)

Infographic: ATM fees on the rise -- ATM surcharges are on the rise, but consumers are pretty adept at avoiding them, according to an April 2013 report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. ... (See ATM surcharges)

Are miles earned on my employer's credit mine, and are they taxable? -- A frequent flier wonders if miles earned on her organization's card are hers. And if so, how does the IRS treat them? ... (See Who owns company miles?)

Credit and finance options for young entrepreneurs -- If you're a student or new grad trying to get credit for a startup, your options may be limited. Alternatives exist, however, if you're creative, ambitious -- and lucky ... (See Funding)

Poll: Card debt the No. 1 taboo subject -- Credit card debt? Shhhh! It ranks as the No. 1 taboo subject, ahead of sex, politics and religion as a conversational no-no, says a CreditCards.com poll ... (See Taboo)

Deceased husband's debt haunts wife -- Three years after he passed, his wife receives a 1099-C form for his credit card debt cancellation. Does she have to report this on her income tax return? ... (See 1099-C)

GAO: ATM surcharges climbing -- The average ATM surcharge at banks and credit unions is up 20 percent since 2007, not counting inflation, a GAO report says ... (See GAO study: ATM surcharges up 20%)

3 keys to successful yard sales: prepare, advertise, organize -- If If you just want to clean clutter, do the minimum. But to make above-average dough, you need to create a better-than-average yard sale ... (See Yard sale tips)

Bankruptcy filings plunge in first quarter of 2013 -- Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy fillings fell the most in states hard hit by the recession, including Nevada and California ... (See 1st quarter bankruptcies)

Credit card interest rates stay at 14.95% for eighth straight week -- April 10, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent once again this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rates survey, April 10, 2013)

Student with no job denied credit -- With student loans as her only income source, it's no surprise that a medical student is turned down for a higher-limit Amazon card ... (See No job, no plastic)

Q&A: Why Robert Kiyosaki thinks our education system is a bust -- In his new book on "Why 'A' students work for 'C' students," Robert Kiyosaki talks about why our current education system is churning out poor kids ... (See Kiyosaki)

AirTran, Hilton HHonors cards change; how it affects you -- An airline merger and reshuffle of Hilton's loyalty program bring changes for frequent travelers. If you have credit cards that earn rewards for those programs, here's what to expect ... (See AirTran, Hilton changes)

Infographic: Consumers prefer mobile banking to mobile payments -- Proponents of mobile payment technology tout the convenience of leaving your wallet at home. Yet, while consumers are eager to bank by phone, they're not sold on buying by phone ... (See Mobile payments)

Infographic: More taxpayers reaching for credit cards -- Most Americans will use checking or savings accounts to pay their taxes this year. But more are reaching for credit cards ... (See Paying taxes)

6 wedding expenses you should always charge on credit -- Wedding-related mishaps can turn any mild-mannered bride into a bridezilla, but sometimes your credit card can come to the rescue ... (See Wedding charges)

Will I inherit my partner's debt when I go into business with him? -- If you're joining up with a business owner who already has some credit card debt, be careful. Depending on the type of account he's got, you could lose out if he fails to pay up ... (See Business debt)

How long does old debt stay on credit reports? -- If a debt is reported as being charged off and passes the state statute of limitations, when does it drop off your credit report? ... (See Old debt)

When can an issuer cancel your credit card account? -- Credit card companies can cancel your account for any number of reasons, even if you're paying on time -- and they don't have to warn you about it. Here's what you can do ... (See Closed card)

Fed: Card balances rise in February -- Credit card balances rose in February as consumer spending increased, despite the specter of pending budget cuts ... (See credit card balances up)

Frugal freezer tips for proper meat storage -- Buying meat in bulk and freezing it can save you hundreds of dollars in food costs, but beware the dreaded freezer burn. Here's how to avoid ite ... (See Freezing meat)

9 tips for traveling with credit cards -- There's more to smooth travel than just keeping your cards working. Here are 10 tips to make your travels with plastic cheaper, easier and more enjoyable ... (See Traveling with credit)

Rates remain at 14.95 percent for seventh straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- April 3, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers lingered at 14.95 percent for the seventh straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Vacay layaway: Pay now, enjoy later plans spread to vacations -- Cruises, airlines and travel agencies turn to layaway financing options so dreams of faraway places can come true, debt-free ... (See Vaction layaway)

Starting an 18-year-old on the road to credit -- His parents sank into debt after marriage, but learned from their mistakes. How do they stop their 18-year-old son from repeating history? ... (See Young credit)

Infographic: Lack of savings consumers' biggest financial worry -- To kick off Financial Literacy Month, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling asked consumers which money matters worry them most ... (See Money worries)

Canceling card, reapplying won't earn multiple sign-up bonuses -- Canceled your credit card and reapplied, hoping for a second sign-up bonus? You may be out of luck. It's not so easy to churn cards for rewards anymore ... (See Bonus churning)

Damaged credit: Can you sue? -- While holding others accountable for inaccurate and costly credit hits is a recent legal phenomenon, courts are recognizing that good credit is a valuable asset ... (See Suing for damaged credit)

Keeping business credit off of your personal record -- Small business credit cards require the owner to personally guarantee them. Does that mean they show up on your personal credit record? Not necessarily ... (See Business credit)

When to pay off old debt -- There can be good reasons to repay a debt even after it is too old for you to be sued over -- but you could create a new headache if you're not careful ... (See Old debt)

Cash-now promise of lawsuit loans under fire -- Lawsuit loans -- cash advances given to lawsuit filers before a case is settled -- are the latest fast-growing, high-fee lending industry to draw controversy and attempts at regulation ... (See Lawsuit loans)

How to clear a judgment from your records -- She repaid the collector after a judgment was placed against her, but the judgment remains after the collector folded. How does she clear the record? ... (See Judgments)

How to check whether your parents left you an inheritance -- Emotions, time and distance can cloud memories, so if you think you may be missing out on an inheritance, go for the records ... (See Inheritance)

Infographic: Young adults ditch homeownership, rack up student loans -- While young people's post-recession lifestyles include fewer homes, fewer cars and less credit card debt, their student loan debt has skyrocketed ... (See Young adult debt)

11 hidden credit card perks -- The phrase "credit card fine print" is usually associated with unpleasant, expensive gotchas, but these hidden surprises bring good news to your wallet ... (See 11 credit card perks)

Will credit score suffer with new card cancellation? -- Just how much will your credit score be impacted if you open a new credit card, pay it off right away, and then cancel it? ... (See Cancel a card)

Rates remain stuck at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- March 27, 2013: Interest rates on new credit card offers stayed put this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

Who pays your expenses if your company goes bankrupt? -- Technically, you could be on the hook for unpaid expenses you charged if the company goes belly up, but in practice, employees are pretty safe ... (See Company expenses)

Without my American Airlines credit card, how do I keep my miles from expiring? -- Most airlines require you to use (or lose) your miles now and then. But you don't have to take a flight to keep them from expiring ... (See Keeping miles active)

Q&A: 'Jane Austen's Guide to Thrift' -- In their new book, Jane Austen fans Kathleen Anderson and Susan Jones proudly apply the romantic novelist's financial sensibilities to today's money problems ... (See Jane Austen)

How wise is it to get a second small business credit card? -- If you're thinking of transferring the balance on your small business card to one with a lower interest rate, there may be better options than getting a second card ... (See A second business card?)

How old debts can lead to seized assets -- Just because you think a debt is beyond the statute of limitations doesn't mean you can ignore a court summons or bill collector lawsuits ... (See Old debts)

Expiration dates fuzzy on old card debt -- Card issuers' rules and conflicting legal rulings laws make it tough to tell when a consumer's debt ages past the statute of limitations ... (See Uncollectible debt)

Infographic: Debt clouds retirement optimism -- Large amounts of debt has workers feeling pessimistic about their ability to retire in financial security ... (See Retirement)

Health-care financing comparison chart -- Fewer health-care financing options populate the market since the recession. Compare the terms and conditions of the top medical credit cards and loans before you apply ... (See Medical credit card chart)

5 tips when comparing health-care credit cards -- Facing a medical bill you can't afford all at once? Before you consider applying for a medical credit card, know what you're getting into ... (See Medical cards)

Medical credit cards: Treatment today, payment headaches tomorrow -- Some say they're a savior in a medical crisis, while consumer advocates decry their high interest rates and few protections ... (See Medical cards)

Federal Reserve stays the course on interest rates -- The Federal Open Market Committee reaffirmed that ultra-low interest rates will continue in an effort to spur job growth ... (See Federal Reserve low interest rate job growth)

Rate survey: Card interest rates hold steady at 14.95% for 5th week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Debt vs. savings: Who gets paid first? -- When facing student loans and other debts, saving for emergencies may seem counterproductive. But without a cushion, you're more likely to face financial peril ... (See Debt vs. savings)

Consumer bureau faces court challenge -- A court ruling calls into question the recess appointment of CFPB director Richard Cordray, but experts expect a political solution ... (See Consumer Financial Protection Bureau)

Funding dreams on credit: Film financing -- Kenny Golde maxed out multiple credit cards and took out a business loan to finish a movie that went over budget, for total debt of $220,000 ... (See Film financing)

Funding dreams on credit: Bike champ -- Gene Hamilton charged as much as $10,000 every year during mountain bike racing season for gas, hotels and airfare and spent the rest of the year paying it off ... (See Bike champ)

Funding dreams on credit: Vintage arcades -- Michelle and Michael Ware maxed out their card at $25,000 to start their vintage arcade game business, only paying the minimum due until things took off ... (See Vintage arcades)

Is there any easy way to track points and miles? -- Third-party websites and apps are the way to go if you're looking to manage multiple rewards programs more easily. AwardWallet is one of the best tools around -- but it has a major limitation ... (See Wrangling points)

Funding dreams on credit: Travel junkie -- Jeremy Jones strategically opened travel rewards cards to get promotional bonus deals to fund his goal of traveling around the world ... (See Jeremy Jones)

5 who funded their dreams on credit -- Do you have a big aspiration, but a small bank account? Check out how these five people went into debt to fulfill their fantasies, and the lessons they learned ... (See Funding dreams)

Funding dreams on credit: Fragrance creation -- Geir Ness created his own fragrance line by charging $12,000 on his credit cards to work with a perfumer and manufacture the first 1,000 bottles ... (See Geir Ness)

Emancipated minors may get freedom, but don't count on credit -- Emancipation is a rare legal course followed by youthful celebrities and a few regular youths. You gain independence, but not credit ... (See Minors and credit)

Out of cash, out of work and in debt -- An unemployed couple can't find work in their new state of residence, keep using plastic to get by, but can't keep up with their credit card bills ... (See Unemployed)

Infographic: How men, women divide money-related chores -- A 2013 TD Ameritrade survey finds that when couples tackle the household finances, women tend to do the day-to-day chores, men the long-terms plans ... (See Couples and money)

Hackers up the ante for small-business data security -- It’s getting trickier for small-business owners to keep customers’ credit card information safe. Still, there are steps you can take. They're not free, but can save you money in the long run ... (See Avoid breaches)

Survey: Credit card interest rates stay at 14.95 percent -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained flat this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

6 questions to ask about your company credit card -- Charging your plane ticket and hotel on a company card has big shot appeal, but know that it's a perk with responsibilities and maybe personal credit risk ... (See Corporate cards)

Asking for a lower interest rate, higher limit on your credit card -- Following a brief lapse, a reader has restored her good payment habits and wants a higher credit limit and lower interest rate. Will her wishes be granted? ... (See Issuer requests)

Best business credit cards in the $100 fee tier -- If you want more business card rewards than a free card, but balk at a massive annual fee, consider these mid-tier choices. Their sign-up bonuses and ongoing rewards help defray the costs ... (See Milking rewards)

'Pound Foolish' author Helaine Olen takes on personal finance 'gurus' -- In her book, the self-confessed former money dummy skewers the dispensers of personal finance advice for their ill-fitting generic "wisdom" ... (See Helaine Olen)

8 smart financial moves for college seniors, new graduates -- Many soon-to-be college grads are woefully unprepared for the financial challenges ahead. Take these crucial steps before tossing that cap into the air ... (See College finances)

What merchant information is required on receipts? -- Small business owners don't have to print their contact details on receipts, but it's good practice from a tax and marketing standpoint ... (See Receipts)

Taken to court for card debt? What to expect -- If you have been served a summons to appear in court over unpaid card debt, the legal journey will unfold in six stages. Know what they are ... (See Court judgment)

Do medical bills show up on credit reports? -- She wants to buy a house, but wonders if her medical bills are what's keeping potential lenders from offering to help her with a mortgage ... (See Medical bills)

Fed: Card balances rise in January -- Credit card balances rose in January, as a fiscal cliff cut in take-home pay and higher prices at gasoline pumps caused consumers to lean more on their plastic ... (See credit card balances up)

Tips for mothers trying to find part-time work -- A mother's schedule makes it harder to find a part-time job, but not impossible, if you just stop thinking like a job-seeker. Instead, think like a needs-filler ... (See Mom seeks work)

5 steps to prevent your debt from haunting your heirs -- If you’ve got debt and die tomorrow, don’t assume it will disappear. Chances are, it will eat into the assets you’re planning to leave for your heirs and may even wipe out your estate. ... (See Debt and death)

Survey: Card rates remain at 14.95 percent for 3rd straight week -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.95 percent Wednesday for the third consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

7 things not to say to someone in a financial crisis -- What do you say to someone who confides in you to having severe money woes? Do you chide them for not being more responsible? Or do you change the subject? ... (See What to say)

Disabled son charges card to the max, then gets sued -- He can't work and lives off of $712 a month and maxed out a credit card. Now he's being sued. His mom worries the court will garnish his disability payments ... (See Sued for debt)

Has your credit report been viewed illegally? -- Though most credit report inquiries are legitimate, some aren't. The information contained there can be used to steal your identity, damage your credit or breach your privacy ... (See Credit reports)

How will the airline merger affect my US Airways miles? -- It's too early to know exactly how the merger will play out. But there are a number of changes you can anticipate and steps you can take to maximize your mileage ... (See Mileage lift)

Infographic: ID theft tops FTC complaints list -- Identity thieves are shifting strategies, as evidenced by a surge in tax refund fraud, according to the Federal Trade Commission ... (See Identity theft)

Creative financing alternatives for small businesses -- Every small-business owner needs credit at some point. Unfortunately, traditional bank loans can be tough to get. But there are alternative financing solutions that could help when traditional credit isn't an option ... (See Small-business funding)

How to pick the best rewards credit card for your business -- Finding the right business card means finding one that rewards you for what you spend on. But don't forget to count up the card's fees, too ... (See Business rewards)

Should you pay off card debt slowly or all at once? -- If you're carrying credit card debt, is it better for your credit score to pay it all off in one fell swoop or in smaller installments? ... (See Card debt repayment)

Credit card complaints zing companies -- Newly published complaint data give a look at card issuers' relationships with customers -- and which companies are likely to pay back a customer with a gripe ... (See Most complaints)

NY Fed: Consumer debt market shows signs of 'healing' -- As 2012 drew to a close, the overall consumer debt market showed signs it is finally on the mend, says research from the New York Fed ... (See Consumer debt )

Making hard budget choices when work hours are cut back -- A 10 percent reduction in hours means a sudden drop in pay and new budgeting choices. They won't be easy, but here's where to start looking ... (See Hour cutback budget)

Rates hold at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained static Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Tax refund theft surges in FTC's list of consumer complaints -- A surge in tax refund ripoffs solidified identity theft as the top consumer complaint in the Federal Trade Commission's annual list ... (See Tax refund theft)

Soon-to-be college grad seeks adult plastic -- Graduating from college means new beginnings and responsibilities, including putting that student credit card aside and applying for grown-up plastic ... (See Student cards)

Infographic: Issuers stingier with credit post-CARD Act -- Since the CARD Act went into effect in early 2010, you need a higher credit score to get more measly credit limits, according to the American Bankers Association ... (See Credit after CARD Act)

2012 credit card complaints reveal trouble hot spots -- Complaints sent to new federal database paint a nationwide mosaic of misery, and the complainingest people tend to have comfortably high incomes ... (See Card complaints)

Best reward cards to win top priority for early boarding -- Most airline rewards cards list 'priority boarding' as a perk, but that may not mean what you think. You'll get aboard before the hordes, but after premium seat holders and elite cardholders ... (See Priority boarding)

Getting business tax information from a closed credit card account -- Banks can close your credit card account for any number of reasons. But you are entitled to get the information you need to file tax returns for your small business ... (See Closed account tax data)

When authorized user status works against you -- A 27-year-old with less-than-stellar credit is only jeopardizing her credit more by adding herself to her mom's card with a really high balance ... (See Authorized user)

Credit limit tricks: Keep a high score while still using your card -- Forget the oft-repeated personal finance axiom about keeping card balances below 30 percent of your credit limit. Just know your monthly credit 'snapshot' date to keep your card balances low and your credit score high ... (See Credit limit)

Tips for setting up a teen's clothing allowance -- With their own allowances, teens make their own choices -- and some will be doozies -- but you'll reduce friction and sneak in a financial lesson or two ... (See Teen allowance)

Compare credit card extended warranties: behind the fine print -- Most credit cards offer to extend manufacturers' warranties, but you'll have to meet a laundry list of requirements to qualify. If you do, though, you'll get your broken purchase fixed or replaced, without breaking your bank account ... (See Extended warranties)

Rate fall to 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell Wednesday for the first time in nearly a month, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Danny Singh talks about early money management skills -- At 11, he took over paying his mom's bills and managing her financial affairs. At 19, he published his second book, this one on fighting foreclosure. Singh dishes on his money lessons ... (See Whiz kid)

Credit score impact of settling a debt or paying it in full -- A debt collector can wipe its hands of you if you accept the settlement offer on a delinquent debt, but how does that impact your credit score? ... (See Settling debt)

Bankers' group says CARD Act raised rates, lowered credit access -- The 3-year-old federal credit card reform law is a mixed bag, banking lobby group says, but hurt consumers access to credit and raised rates ... (See CARD Act impact)

Infographic: Credit report errors hit less-educated the hardest -- Are those with less education more likely to be victimized by credit report errors? That's what a report issued by the Federal Trade Commission suggests ... (See Credit report errors)

10 ways loan co-signers can protect their assets -- Despite warnings from experts, people still co-sign loans for their loved ones. If you must, or already did, at least take these steps to protect yourself ... (See Co-signing protection)

Should you fund your startup business with a credit card? -- We’ve all read articles about entrepreneurs who borrowed their startup money on credit cards -- and built wildly profitable companies. But credit card financing is very risky business ... (See Risky business)

After a debt judgment, inheritance may be at risk -- She's being sued for past due credit card debt. Can her creditors go after any inherited property or cash down the road? ... (See Debt judgment)

Prepare for paperless Social Security benefits -- As of March 1, 2013, paper checks for Social Security and other federal benefits disappeared, replaced by direct deposit or, for those with no bank accounts, prepaid debit cards. Here's how the check-less system works ... (See Federal benefits go digital )

American, US Airways merger could launch credit card battle -- While American Airlines and US Airways struck notes of love and harmony when announcing their merger, the union could set up a battle between two major banks over who can offer credit cards to customers of the world’s largest airline ... (See Airline merger rewards fallout)

Watch out for fuel surcharges on reward flights -- Beware those hefty fuel surcharges, added by nearly all European and Asian airlines. You can't pay for them with points, which devalues bonus point offers ... (See Fuel surcharges)

Pluses, minuses of renting out a spare bedroom to a tenant -- Turning an empty room into extra cash seems easy, but think through whether you're willing to put up with loss of privacy and other inconveniences ... (See Renting out a spare room)

Rates hold steady at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.96 percent, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Authorized user's credit score in jeopardy on shared card -- When he was 14, his dad added him to a card account to boost his credit score. Now Dad is mismanaging the card and hurting his son's credit score ... (See Authorized user blues)

Travel rewards vs. cash back pits aspirations against practicality -- Cash-back rewards can be used to pay down debts, buy plane tickets, or any number of other things. But there is an aspirational value to travel rewards ... (See Choosing rewards)

Smartphone apps to help with taxes -- Pay Uncle Sam with your thumbs? Yes, you can with new or improved smartphone tax apps that let you file taxes, guesstimate refunds and more ... (See Tax apps)

FTC report: 1 in 5 Americans has a mistake in credit report -- If applied to the 200 million Americans with credit reports, the Federal Trade Commission's findings would mean 40 million have a credit report mistake ... (See Credit report mistakes)

Is it worthwhile for gas stations to accept credit cards? -- A small-business owner wonders if it's worth accepting plastic at his new gas station. The answer depends in large part on the local market ... (See Accepting gas cards)

Pay As You Earn helps some student loan borrowers -- If you're a college grad who used federal student loans to pay for college, you may be eligible for a new income-driven repayment tool: the Department of Education’s Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan ... (See Student loans)

'Identity Thief' screenwriter Jerry Eeten has identity issues, too -- By the time Jerry Eeten's screenwriting career took off with the new Jason Bateman-Melissa McCarthy movie, he'd already left Hollywood to fashion a new identity as a Florida teacher ... (See Thief)

On disability, can't pay high card debt - is home at risk? -- Coping with a major illness and massive credit card debt, a woman wonders if the card issuers can take her house if she stops payments ... (See Illness and debt)

Infographic: In tough job market, student debt grows -- Recent grads are caving under the weight of their student loans, a TransUnion study has found ... (See Student loans)

Costly tax refund loans not really gone -- While RALs have effectively been banned, consumers are still being pitched to pay big on costly tax refund advances ... (See Refund anticipation loans live on)

11 options for filing tax returns for free -- Want to file your taxes for free? Depending on how much money you make and other factors, you might have several choices for free filing online or in-person with volunteer help. ... (See 2013 tax filing)

13 inexpensive Valentine's Day ideas -- Popular culture invites you to judge your mate's devotion based on how much they spend. Consider these 13 ideas and avoid an unfrugal accident ... (See Valentine ideas)

Credit card balances slide in December -- Consumers' credit card balances fell in December 2012, as concerns about the fiscal cliff overshadowed holiday cheer ... (See Consumer credit card balances)

Rates tick up to 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Executive pay at credit counseling agencies -- Their clients are at the brink of bankruptcy, but executives at some of the largest nonprofit credit counseling agencies are in the top 1 percent of U.S. earners ... (See CEO salaries at credit counseling agencies)

Steps to rebuild a thin credit file -- After getting into credit card trouble almost 10 years ago, he gave up using plastic. Now he wants to try again with a new card, but how can he qualify? ... (See Thin credit )

Feds bust sophisticated credit card ring that stole $200 million -- In a massive manipulation of the credit card system, a New Jersey-based fraud ring stole more than $200 million by creating 7,000 false identities and 25,000 bogus cards ... (See Credit card fraud)

How to boost rewards for Valentine's Day gifts -- If you play your credit cards right, you can score points from your honey and for yourself by using a rewards card running a Valentine's Day promotion ... (See Sweetheart deals)

Credit counseling agencies get bigger, but are they any better? -- A wave of consolidation is rapidly transforming credit counseling from locally based agencies to national call centers ... (See Big credit counseling agencies get bigger - but better?)

Choosing a credit counseling agency: 6 tips -- Nonprofit credit counseling agencies are bound by rules that guard against abuses. But some agencies can work better for you than others ... (See Credit counselors)

The business of credit counseling -- Nonprofit credit counselors benefit from a solid reputation but clients face high dropout rates and difficulty getting information ... (See Credit counselors)

Top 10 consumer credit counseling agencies -- Slideshow lists the 10 largest nonprofit consumer credit counseling agencies in the U.S. by revenue; their top executives, and executive pay ... (See Credit counselors)

Which credit cards should your small business accept? -- Generally speaking, the more payment options you offer, the easier it will be to make sales. But you have to consider costs. ... (See Acceptance strategies)

Compare 4 choices for debt relief -- People who need help getting out from under debt have a number of choices, each with some advantages and pitfalls. Here's an overview ... (See 4 debt relief choices)

Fed: Banks remain reluctant to ease terms on new cards -- Banks have made it somewhat easier for consumers to get a new card or qualify for a credit limit increase. However, the pace of change remains glacially slow ... (See Fed: Banks reluctant to ease credit card terms)

When does it make sense to roll card debt into a refinance? -- A couple with huge card debt and high-interest mortgage wonders if rolling the card debt into a new, low-rate refinance makes sense ... (See Refinance)

1099-Ks: Small businesses face new penalties, paperwork for tax reporting -- Credit card issuers and third-party settlement organizations like PayPal are now required withhold 28 percent of gross receipts from merchants who have not given them the company’s correct information ... (See New 1099-K form)

Infographic: Women more likely than men to break up over money -- Poor money management skills and heavy debt are a turn-off, especially for women, a CreditCards.com survey has found ... (See Love and money)

BBB, NFL warn: Super Bowl scams can injure unwary 49er, Ravens fans -- This year's Super Bowl is a hot ticket, but the BBB and NFL merchants warn of rip-offs that can put a big hit on your wallet ... (See Beware Super scams)

How to keep the costs low on a kitchen remodeling -- This common home improvement job can be costly, so choose materials carefully and consider doing some of the job yourself ... (See Low-cost kitchen)

FTC: Debt collectors often have skimpy info -- About 1 million U.S. consumers a year dispute debts, says a new FTC report, and no wonder: Collectors often have little info on what is owed ... (See Collectors' skimpy info)

Rates remain at 14.95 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers held steady at 14.95 percent Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Mom defaults on card shared with daughter -- A mom tried to do the right thing by adding her daughter to her credit card account, but then she stopped paying. How will that affect her daughter's credit rating? ... (See Authorized user)

Heavy debt a major turnoff, especially for women, CreditCards.com survey finds -- Attitudes regarding debt loom large over any relationship, and that's especially true for women, who find heavy debt a huge turnoff, says a CreditCards.com survey ... (See Debt's a turnoff)

Fed: As long as unemployment is high, rates will remain low -- If, after all these years, you still haven't taken advantage of today's historically low interest rates, don't worry. Today's record low rates aren't going to disappear any time soon ... (See FOMC)

Churning cards for multiple sign-up bonuses -- Canceling cards and signing up for them again to maximize bonus points is a practice known as "churning." Some banks make that easier than others ... (See Rewards churning)

Why your traditional credit score may be becoming obsolete -- As millions of Americans recover from the sharpest downturn since the Great Depression, a growing number of credit card issuers are quietly testing new, more comprehensive ways to evaluate customers' creditworthiness ... (See Alternative credit scores)

Signing up for a credit card with business partner can be risky -- Hitching your credit to your business partner's can damage your personal score in several different ways ... (See Credit cards in partnerships)

6 ways NOT to pay off holiday credit card debt -- While making good on your resolution to pay down your debt is a terrific goal, think twice before resorting to these six sketchy debt pay-off plans ... (See Bad moves)

Credit card surcharges now allowed, but retailers hesitate -- A court settlement gives retailers the right to recover "swipe fees" by charging extra for credit card use starting Jan. 27, but will they? ... (See Credit card surcharges)

Credit report marred by multiple collectors' marks over one loan -- If a delinquent debt is finally settled, can you get the multiple collectors' notations on your credit report removed? ... (See Credit reports and bad loans)

Infographic: Will credit card surcharges take hold in the U.S.? -- Australia's experience with credit card surcharges may hold some clues for what's in store for U.S. merchants and customers ... (See Surcharges)

Mmmm, cheap: Finding frugal food, recipes -- When you come home tired with hungry mouths to feed, it's easy to take the prepared meal route. A bit of research and planning will yield less costly and more healthy results ... (See Cheap food)

FTC broadens case in $275 million 'BadCustomer.com' scam -- Agency goes after relatives, mansion, $1 million in silver, alleging that ill-gotten gains scammed from credit card holders were shielded from seizure ... (See BadCustomer.com)

Rates dip slightly after 10-week status quo: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers fell slightly Wednesday after remaining unchanged for 10 straight weeks, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Emancipated minor wants to start building credit -- Just how does a recently emancipated soon-to-be 17-year-old go about building his credit without parental consent? ... (See Emancipated minors and credit)

5 credit lessons all parents should teach their daughters -- Home schooling about credit is especially important for daughters, because women with low levels of financial literacy do worse with credit than their male counterparts. So teach these five lessons to your daughters before they leave home ... (See Teach your girls)

Delta's revenue-based elite status system adds AmEx incentive -- Delta's rewards system adds spending requirements for elite status in 2014. But Delta AmEx holders may have a workaround ... (See Skymiles changes)

How to find the best credit card for your business -- Your own bank may offer some good business card options, but if you ask, you might be able to get one with a higher credit limit, lower fees and rates and a reward program ... (See Best business card)

Facing off with Derek Sanderson -- Former fallen-from-grace NHL superstar Derek Sanderson talks about his new-found mission helping fellow athletes manage their wealth ... (See Derek Sanderson)

Quick ways to create a credit history for lenders -- With down payment in hand to buy her first home, but no credit history, a young woman is frustrated by repeated rejections from lenders ... (See Credit history)

Infographic: Buying by mobile phone hits critical mass -- Mobile payments made some headway toward the mainstream in 2012, according to research from IDC Financial Insights ... (See Mobile payments)

Couch worn out? Less expensive alternatives to buying a new sofa -- Is your old couch about to give up the ghost? From deep cleaning to slipcovers to reupholstering, you have options other than to buy another ... (See Replacing old sofa)

Sock rewards into retirement or college savings with investment cards -- Several rewards programs help you save for the future. Investment rewards can be deposited directly into retirement or college savings funds ... (See Investment rewards)

Rates don't budge for 10th straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained unchanged for the 10th consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

4 high-cost desperation loans to avoid -- Overspend on the holidays? A short-term loan may seem like manna from heaven, but some loans may leave you in worse shape than before ... (See Last-ditch loans)

Does closing a newly activated credit card hurt your credit score? -- She accidentally activated a card, but already has two in her wallet. Will canceling a card she never used hurt her credit score? ... (See Credit scores)

States limit welfare debit cards to ban tobacco, alcohol, lottery, porn purchases -- Prodded by abuses, states pass laws preventing food stamp and welfare debit cards from being used to buy tobacco, alcohol, lottery tickets and porn ... (See Benefit cards)

How to get elite status at hotels quicker -- This is an excellent time to get into a hotel loyalty program with a rewards credit card: Their seasonal promotions can help you achieve 'elite' status faster ... (See Elite status)

Infographic: Bankers predict thirst for credit in 2013 -- Consumers are going to be eating up more of their credit and asking lenders for more, according to a December 2012 survey ... (See Credit outlook)

Bankruptcies fell 14% in 2012, continuing 2-year decline -- Bankruptcy filings for 2012 year show a 14 percent fall, following a 12 percent decline the prior year, as America continues its shaky economic recovery ... (See Bankruptcies fall)

Business card benefits outweigh limitations for most businesses -- Credit cards aimed at small businesses don't come with many of the protections found in consumer cards. But companies still tend to find them better for business expenses than consumer cards. ... (See Business vs. personal cards)

How to handle collection calls after a loved one dies -- A widow is being hounded by debt collectors over her deceased husband's unpaid card debt. What are her rights and how can she stop the calls? ... (See Card debt after death)

Multiply reward points with prepaid and reload cards -- Rewards junkies' newest strategy multiplies points and miles fast using prepaid and reload cards. It's a bit like getting rewards for a cash advance, then using the advance to pay large bills like rent fee-free ... (See Multiply rewards)

8 emotional spending triggers - do you know yours? -- Budget plans usually start with a month or so of data gathering, but that's the easy part. Evaluating why you spend what you do is the trick ... (See Spending triggers)

He's new to credit, behind on bills, worried about job hunt -- He started off on the right foot by getting credit and paying bills on time, and then he moved, lost his job and fell behind on payments ... (See Missed payments)

Rates hold steady for 9th straight week: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers remained locked at 14.96 percent for the ninth consecutive week, according to the Credit Cards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Consumer credit card balances pick up for the second month -- Consumer credit card balances rose in November for the second consecutive month, according to the Federal Reserve's latest G.19 consumer credit report ... (See G.19)

American Airlines cardholders lose elite boarding perk, gain opportunity to pay for others -- Citi AAdvantage cardholders will no longer get to board American Airlines flights with elite passengers, but they're still at the front of the Economy queue ... (See AAdvantage rewards)

How to dispute fraudulent charges on a business gas card -- A reader wants to know what rights he has in disputing fraudulent charges made to his company's WEX gas cards ... (See Disputing business card charges)

Beware of co-signing student loans for your kids -- A mom co-signed for her kids' student loans, and now payments are way overdue. Mom's credit score is tanking as result. What are her options? ... (See Co-signer risks)

Infographic: Groceries top list of most popular rewards programs -- When it comes to credit card rewards most desired by consumers, grocery rewards eat everyone else's lunch, according to research from American Express ... (See Grocery rewards programs)

7 things that WON'T impact your credit score -- Some slip-ups can damage your credit score, but do you know which of your personal and financial attributes have no bearing on that three-digit number? ... (See Credit score)

Infographic: Credit card delinquencies on the decline -- Delinquent payments on credit cards hit an 18-year low in the third quarter of 2012, according to numbers from the American Bankers Association ... (See Delinquencies)

Rates begin 2013 at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates on new credit card offers began the new year at a standstill, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Military gets tougher protections against high-rate loans -- Congress creates new enforcement powers for law that protects soldiers from high-rate loans ... (See Military)

What lump sum offer will debt collectors settle for? -- With $80,000 of student loan debt in default, he wonders if there are any industry standards for settling for less than he owes with the collection agency ... (See Debt settlement)

What's in the (credit)cards for you in 2013? -- Smartphone magic that lets you breeze through checkout lines? Higher barriers against rapacious card rip-offs? We ask analysts what's ahead in 2013 ... (See 2013 predictions)

Maxing out credit card often less harmful with business card than consumer card -- Spending the monthly limit on your business credit card is one way to rack up rewards. It can also hurt your credit score -- though business credit use is reported less often than consumer credit use. ... (See Business credit)

One late pay won't ruin a credit score - and needn't kill a new romance -- If a guy on a date tells you his credit score got ruined by one late payment while he was on vacation, there's probably more to the story ... (See Late paying lover)

Infographic: 12 days of trauma injuries have devastating cost -- Holiday-related injuries fill emergency rooms -- and can be financially devastating for families who are often already spread thing this time of year ... (See Trauma injury costs)

Consumer bureau begins new look at credit card rules -- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau launched a call for comments as part of a study on the Credit CARD Act of 2009 ... (See CARD Act review)

CreditCards.com Weekly Card Rates Report: Rates hold steady while consumer debt burden drops -- Interest rates on credit card offers held steady at 14.96 percent for a seventh week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. ... (See Rate report)

How to mend your bad credit rating -- If you have horrible credit, it doesn't mean it's ruined forever. Knowing how you got there and how to make things right can help ... (See Digging out of bad credit)

Are overdrafts on prepaid cards a good deal or a debt trap? -- Overdraft programs on prepaid cards are sneaky, high-cost loans that should be outlawed, consumer advocates say. But some customers of the card company NetSpend couldn't disagree more ... (See Prepaid card overdraft)

Please help me - I spent too much on Christmas -- She budgeted for holiday gifts, but went way over for the kids. And then, kablooey! There went the car, and here come the bills. Now what? ... (See Holiday budget blues)

Taxes, tuition can rack up rewards, for a fee. Is it worth it? -- Large payments for taxes or tuition can rack up big rewards, but they often come with extra costs -- 'convenience fees.' When does it make sense to pay them? ... (See Big reward, big fee)

Infographic: Gift cards seen as more valuable than higher-priced gifts -- Consumers place high value on the flexibility gift cards bring, according to a December 2012 survey by payment processing company First Data ... (See Gift cards)

How credit cards can improve daily deals -- Daily deal offers are getting a fresh boost from credit cards. Here are three ways the new combos make deal-snatching easier ... (See Better daily deals)

Sticking with a frugal lifestyle -- Everyone wants to save money, but to make frugality a lasting lifestyle, you'll need specific goals and a support group around you ... (See Frugal lifestyle)

Rates remain stuck at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Interest rates remained locked at 14.96 percent for the sixth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

When a cardholder dies, is the authorized user liable for any balance? -- When a primary account holder for a credit card dies, an authorized user on the card wonders if he is now responsible for the card's balance ... (See Authorized users)

2012 airline gift card comparison chart -- While most airlines offer gift cards, their terms and conditions vary. Make sure you know what you're getting before you buy ... (See Airline gift card)

Using credit, debit instead of cash can make you fat -- Dieters, watch out: paying with plastic at the grocery store can make you more likely to load up your cart with donuts, ice cream, potato chips and other fattening foods ... (See Plastic versus cash)

Best card for small business gas rewards -- For small businesses that guzzle gas, it pays to look for the right credit card. The best rewards come from programs that aren't tied to one gas station. ... (See Best gas rewards)

Financial resolutions that stick -- Want to get your financial house in order in 2013? There are some tricks you can use to make sure you will achieve your goals this time around. ... (See Money resolutions)

Why good credit matters in a natural disaster -- When Superstorm Sandy hit, the last thing on East Coast residents' minds was their credit score. But having good credit and available credit smooths the bumpy road to recovery ... (See Superstorm Sandy)

Can debt collectors call relatives? Who and when? -- She owes a debt, but has been avoiding the debt collector's calls. So the collector calls her mother and shares private information. Is this legal? ... (See Debt collection)

Prototype credit card, up for auction, drawing interest -- A crudely constructed but historic credit card with the first magnetic stripe expected to fetch more than $10,000 at auction ... (See Historic credit card)

How to find an affordable, safe handyman -- Cast a wide net to get a reliable, reasonable person for your home repairs, and this is one area where cheapest isn't always best ... (See Finding a handyman)

Consumer watchdog report details credit bureaus' work -- Every wonder what the credit reporting agencies actually do with your credit information before selling it to lenders? You're in luck. The CFPB has issued the first ever comprehensive public report on the big three credit bureaus ... (See CFPB report on credit bureaus)

Rates remain at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 12, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.96 percent for the fifth straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Credit card lessons for college students -- What started out as an emergency card in college can morph into big, long-term debt if you're not careful. Plan carefully before moving on to another card ... (See College credit)

Growing number of jailers allow credit cards to post bail -- To the chagrin of traditional bail bond agents, an increasing number of jails allow arrested people to pay their bonds by credit card ... (See Pay bail with credit)

Fed: Rates will remain low until unemployment improves -- If you're thinking about refinancing your home or buying a new car sometime next year, you still have plenty of time to do it. The Federal Reserve announced Wednesday that it will continue to keep the federal funds rate target near zero ... (See FOMC)

FTC cracks down on mobile apps for kids -- Games and other mobile apps aimed at kids have come under fire for sharing information and allowing in-app charges without adequate disclosure ... (See Kids' mobile apps)

Upgrading your account for higher rewards can pay off -- Upgrading from the Chase Southwest Visa Plus card to the Southwest Visa Premier gets you a better reward deal. But if the bank treats it like a new account, your credit score could take a hit ... (See Upgrading for rewards)

11 smartphone tips to ease holiday shopping stress -- Ease your holiday shopping experience by employing these handy dandy apps and tips that can save you time and money while preventing headaches ... (See 11 smartphone tips, apps)

How to deal with card debt in unemployment -- A single mom is laid off with a son in college and has lots of credit card debt. Will turning to a credit consolidation company help or hurt her dilemma? ... (See Laid off, in debt)

How one determined Kansas couple paid down $120,000 in debt -- Frances Bostick of Manhattan, Kansas, keeps a bag of cut-up credit cards to remind her of her hard-won victory over a $120,000 debt ... (See Shedding debt)

Consumer credit card balances ratchet up in October -- Consumer credit card balances picked up in October after falling the previous month, according to the Federal Reserve's latest G.19 consumer credit report ... (See G.19)

Infographic: Money-related resolutions hit record high -- Saving more, shedding debt are at the top of consumers' New Year's resolution lists ... (See New Year's resolutions)

Advatages, drawbacks to owning a duplex, renting out the other half -- Renting out half a building while living in the rest can be a path to greater wealth, or to grayer hair, depending on the property and your landlording temperament ... (See Duplex ownership)

Some credit reports falsely tag consumers as terrorists, drug traffickers -- Credit bureaus are selling lenders special notations on credit reports called OFAC alerts. But some bureaus aren't telling consumers about the alerts -- and aren't allowing them to dispute it ... (See False credit report alerts)

How to rebuild credit after defaulting on several cards -- She defaulted on several credit cards years ago, and was even sued for payment on one of them. Now she wants a new credit card. Will she qualify? ... (See Card default)

Consumers' credit card refund checks may be in the mail -- From now through early 2013, millions of credit card and debit card users should get refunds -- some in the hundreds of dollars -- due to settlements over the issuers' misdeeds ... (See Consumer refunds)

Rates stay put at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Dec. 5, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers remained at 14.96 percent for the fourth consecutive week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Airline exclusions - aka No, you can't earn rewards on a free rewards flight -- Airlines' exclusions policies limit where you can use frequent flier miles, and that prevents you from earning extra miles while using your free ones ... (See Exclusions)

Will high credit card balance hurt recent grad's credit score? -- A mom wonders if her college grad daughter's high credit card balance and regular payments will help build a good score or hurt it ... (See Credit scores, high balances)

What happens, what to do after a card data breach -- If your card data has been breached, your vulnerability -- and the right self-defense actions -- can vary widely ... (See Coping with a data breach)

Antidepressant use can spur spending sprees -- An unexpected and financially devastating side effect of antidepressants: irrational shopping sprees, gambling jaunts and reckless investments ... (See Antidepressants and spending)

Cutting a bare-bones budget even further -- If you need to punch another hole in your belt, look again at expenses. If it doesn't feed you, heal you, house you or boost income, cut it ... (See Painful budget cuts)

Rates remain stuck at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 28, 2012: Interest rates on new credit card offers idled at 14.96 percent for the third straight week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report)

Co-signed loans and your credit history -- A mom co-signed her son's student and car loans. Now that he's employed, she wonders if she can get those loans off her credit reports ... (See Co-signed loans)

Infographic: Holiday shoppers use rewards to travel, offset expenses -- The holidays can be an opportunity to rack up credit card rewards points, miles and cash back. So how will cardholders put their rewards to work after the holidays this year? ... (See Rewards)

Fiscal cliff calculator: figure your income tax hit -- This calculator lets you see what your federal income and Social Security taxes are now, and what they will be if we fall off the 'fiscal cliff' ... (See Fiscal cliff calculator)

Your fiscal cliff: What to do now to prepare for a financial fall -- If we fall off a 'fiscal cliff,' do you know where you would land? Here's what to do now to prepare and soften the impact of expiring tax breaks, spending cuts ... (See Fiscal cliff)

Which credit card will get me home for the holidays next year? -- Choose the right rewards card now to earn a free cross-country trip in a year. ... (See Travel for free)

Consumers boost credit card spending, N.Y. Fed report says -- Consumers are more open to using their cards than they have been in the past. But they're relying on the cards they've got, rather than applying for new ones, according to new Federal Reserve data ... (See Consumer credit)

6 credit score strategies: Do they work? -- Some people go to extremes to try and improve their credit scores, adopting tactics that can seem, well, a bit unusual. What’s even odder is that a few of them actually work. ... (See Credit scores)

Credit cards and Asperger syndrome -- A 29-year-old with Asperger syndrome and under her mother's guardianship wants more freedoms, including a credit card of her own ... (See Asperger syndrome)

Rates hold steady at 14.96 percent: CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report -- Nov. 21, 2012: Interest rates on new card offers held steady this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report ... (See Rate report )

12 ways to wrap gift cards -- With a little ingenuity and a few extra bucks, you can turn that 3-1/8x2-1/8 piece of plastic into a thoughtful and guaranteed-to-bring-a-smile present ... (See Gift cards)

Once you reaffirm an old debt you can be sued -- Debt that has passed the statute of limitations should prevent debt collectors from suing you -- unless you mistakenly reaffirmed that the debt is yours ... (See Re-aging debt)

NZ the EZ way: Flying to New Zealand using points, miles -- Earning enough points for a US-New Zealand flight takes patience, but some airline deals now can make it easier ... (See New Zealand deals)

Cards increase VIP experience programs -- Card companies are stepping up their special offers for cardholders, using their leverage as event sponsors to extend VIP-type perks to more mainstream customers ... (See VIP experiences)

Infographic: Bill pay goes mobile -- More consumers are using their mobile