Credit Card Glossary: Terms and Definitions
The minimum payment is the lowest amount of money that you are required to pay on your credit card statement each month. See your credit card “terms and conditions” document to see how your credit card’s minimum payment is calculated. Until 2004, minimum payments were commonly as low as 2 percent, which meant that any large balance could take decades to pay off if only the minimum payment was made. Under pressure from federal banking regulators, card issuers ramped up the required minimum payment. The industry standard is now to calculate the minimum as all fees and interest due that month plus 1 percent of the principal amount owed. See Minimum payments survey: How much your card issuer charges to see how the major card issuers set minimum payments.