Rate survey: Rates tick up to 14.96 percent
Interest rates on new credit card offers inched up
this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report.
|CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report
||6 months ago
|Methodology: The national average credit card APR is comprised of 100 of the most popular credit cards in the country, including cards from dozens of leading U.S. issuers and representing every card category listed above. Introductory, or teaser, rates are not included in the calculation.
|Updated: Feb. 6, 2013
The national average annual percentage rate (APR) rose
to 14.96 percent Wednesday. This is the first time average rates have increased
since October 2012.
Chase spurred this week's rate change by raising the APR on the Amazon Rewards Visa Signature credit card from 13.24 percent to 14.24 percent.
The issuer also removed the rewards card from its marketing
pages on the Chase website this week. It's unclear whether the issuer is
phasing out the card or simply retooling the way it markets it. The card is
still offered on the Amazon.com website, with the slightly higher APR.
Chase spokesman Steve O'Halloran confirmed the rate change, but did not provide a comment on the other changes.
issuers tweaked offers
wasn't the only issuer to make changes to its card portfolio this week. Several
other issuers made small changes to the credit card offers they are marketing
online, including Discover and American Express.
Discover, for example, took down the application
page for the Discover Student More card after taking it off its primary website
earlier this year. In December, the issuer had removed the "Student More" card
from its central marketing pages. However, the application could still be found
In its place, the issuer is actively pushing the new
Discover "it" card for students, which features the same APR as the Discover
Student More card and similar cash-back rewards. To keep up with the changes,
CreditCards.com replaced the Discover Student More card with the Discover "it"
card for students in the CreditCards.com rates database.
This is the second time CreditCards.com has added a
Discover "it" card to its database. Discover has aggressively marketed its new
line of "it" cards since the beginning of January. The cards are intended to be
the issuer's flagship credit cards, Discover says.
American Express also made a small offer change this
week, dropping the promotional balance transfer offer on the Jet Blue credit
card. The airline card previously featured a promotional balance transfer rate of
3.99 percent for 9 months.
In addition, the sporting goods retailer Cabela's made
a small change to the maximum APR on its store rewards card, the Cabela's Club
Visa. The issuer lowered the maximum rate from 18.20 percent to 18.19 percent,
likely to reflect changes in the LIBOR rate. Unlike most U.S. credit cards
which are tied to the prime rate, the Cabela's Club Visa is tied to the London
Interbank Offered Rate, known as LIBOR. When the One Month LIBOR rate
changes (as it recently did), the APR on the Cabela's Club Visa goes up or down
The change to the card's maximum APR didn't affect
the national average, however, because CreditCards.com only considers a card's
lowest available rate when calculating average interest rates. The Cabela's
Club Visa's minimum APR remains at 9.99 percent.
Individually, the changes issuers made to their card
portfolios this week were minor. However, taken together, they are notable in
that they show issuers are making at least some changes to their credit card
Credit card offers have remained remarkably stable
through much of the past year, with few issuers making substantial changes to
APRs, promotional balance transfers or interest-free offers.
See related: Fed: Banks remain reluctant to ease terms on new cards
Published: February 6, 2013