Survey: Average card APR remains fixed at 15.18 percent
By Kelly Dilworth | Published: October 26, 2016
The average APR on new card offers held still Wednesday, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report.
For the third straight week, the national average annual percentage rate (APR) remained fastened at 15.18 percent.
Most credit cards tracked by CreditCards.com advertised the same promotional terms and interest rates.
Regions Bank refreshed its credit card lineup and replaced the Regions Visa Platinum Rewards card with a card that carries a slightly higher maximum APR. However, the change didn’t affect the national average because CreditCards.com only considers a card’s lowest available interest rate when calculating average rates.
The new Regions Prestige Visa Signature card charges a minimum APR of 13.24 percent and a maximum APR of 22.24 percent. Regions also introduced a lower rate plain vanilla card, the Regions Life Visa, and a higher-end rewards card, the Regions Premium Visa Signature card.
Online fraud is rising
As U.S. card networks clamp down on counterfeit cards with chip-enabled credit cards, fraudsters are increasingly turning to online theft to bilk retailers out of goods and services.
According to an October 2016 report released by Javelin Strategy and Research, instances of online fraud have shot up in recent months as fraudsters are finding it harder to use fake credit cards in stores. Forty-four percent of online-only merchants and 43 percent of online and in-store merchants said they were experiencing significantly more fraud this year.
“One year after the fraud liability shift – for merchants still not accepting EMV for eligible transactions – the anticipated surge in online channel fraud is beginning to manifest,” wrote Javelin in the report. Experts widely predicted that card-not-present fraud – including fraud that occurs online – would increase sharply after the U.S. transitioned to chip-enabled payments.
According to Javelin, card-not-present fraud is also becoming a bigger problem as online shopping transactions increase. As retailers process substantially more transactions online, they’re finding it harder to tell which transactions are legitimate and which ones are fraudulent.
To help combat the problem, the U.S. card industry is currently working on new technology that will allow retailers to authenticate payments more thoroughly and send a larger amount of customer information to card issuers, reported The Wall Street Journal.
Meanwhile, card-present fraud has fallen dramatically at retailers that currently accept EMV-enabled payments. According to figures released in September by Visa, for example, instances of card-present fraud fell by nearly half in May, compared to the previous year, at EMV-compliant merchants.
|CreditCards.com's Weekly Rate Report|
|Avg. APR||Last week||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: Oct. 26, 2016|