Rate survey: Credit card interest rates remain flat
|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: June 12, 2013
Interest rates on new credit card offers remained fixed this
week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report.
The national average annual percentage rate (APR) remained
at 14.95 percent Wednesday after slipping by 3 basis points the first week of
Card issuers left APRs alone this week. For the first time
in about a month, issuers also made no changes to promotional offers, including introductory APRs
and balance transfers.
Until this week's lull, issuers had been active this quarter compared to
the first quarter of 2013, when changes to card terms were rare.
Over the past two months, for example, the national average
has changed four weeks out of eight due to issuers modifying the rates on their cards. In the first quarter of the
year, the national average remained flat 10 weeks out of 13.
Job market improving
Issuers have begun ramping up their marketing
efforts and tinkering with credit card terms in order to attract new and
profitable cardholders at a time when cardholders' job prospects are slowly
but steadily improving.
The economy added 175,000 jobs in May, modestly beating economists' estimates, according to a report released
Friday by the U.S. Labor Department.
The department's figures,
including revised employment data for March and April, say the economy has added an
average of 189,200 jobs per month for the past five months. That's a considerable improvement from the same period in
2012, when the economy added an average of 166,400 jobs per month in the first
five months of the year.
Despite the substantial increase in new jobs, the
unemployment rate ticked up from 7.5 percent to 7.6 percent in May, but that, too, is a positive sign: The rate increased because more people
re-entered the workforce, looking for jobs.
of employers released Tuesday by the staffing agency Manpower suggests that
the new job-seekers may have luck: Employers are poised to absorb a larger number of those workers in the
months ahead, the survey said.
Manpower's Employment Outlook survey, which
queries 18,000 employers across the country, found that 22 percent of them say they plan to hire
more people in the third quarter of 2013 -- up from 18 percent in the previous
quarter. Just 6 percent say they plan layoffs.
Hiring expectations have improved steadily since 2009,
according to the survey, but are still well below pre-recession levels.
Industries with the biggest percentage increase in the
number of employers who say more jobs will be available by fall include construction,
hospitality and retail -- all three of which greatly depend on consumer
Consumers, meanwhile, say the economy still weighs heaviest
on their minds these days (with unemployment a relatively close second),
according to a Gallup poll released Tuesday. But even that report sounded a bright note: The percentage of consumers who say that high
unemployment is "the most important problem facing this country today"
has fallen significantly over the past three years, showing that Americans are
feeling more comfortable with the current job market than they have since 2009.
concern with economic problems is easing," wrote Gallup's Frank Newport in
release announcing Gallup's results. Still, "it
remains fairly prominent in Americans' minds."
See related: Fed: Card balances ticked up in April,People are managing cards better, survey finds
Published: June 12, 2013