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Rate survey: Average card APR inches up to 17.65 percent

Summary

The average APR on new credit card offers floated higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report.

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The average APR on new credit card offers floated higher this week, according to the CreditCards.com Weekly Credit Card Rate Report. The national average APR climbed to 17.65 percent – up from 17.64 percent the previous week.

The national average APR is currently at its highest point in more than a decade and shows no signs of reversing course any time soon. The average APR for new card offers hasn’t fallen in more than six months. Meanwhile, 2018 only saw the average APR decline once when it dropped by just 0.12 percentage points.

The average maximum card APR also remains high. It currently registers at 24.95 percent. Meanwhile, the average median card APR – which is closer to what many new cardholders are charged – stands at 21.30 percent.

See related: Historic credit card interest rates chart

BP Visa gas card advertises a higher rate

The gas chain BP spurred this week’s rate change by increasing the APR on the BP Visa by three quarters of a percentage point. New cardholders who carry a balance are now charged 29.99 percent, which is equal to the penalty APRs charged by other cards.

Like many retail credit cards, the APR on the BP Visa card is considerably higher than the APRs charged by general market cards. But even compared to other store cards on the market, the APR on the BP Visa is exceptional. The BP Visa carries one of the highest APRs of any card included in the weekly rate report. The Texaco Visa card also carries an extra high APR. It charges 29.24 percent.

Other co-branded store cards included in the weekly rate report, by contrast, charge considerably less. For example, the Gap Visa card charges a 27.24 percent APR – which is still considerably higher than the minimum APR charged by many general market cards. Meanwhile, the Barnes and Noble Mastercard charges a range starting at 16.24 percent and maxing out at 27.24 percent.

None of the credit cards included in the weekly rate report advertised new promotions. However, some popular cards on the market have modified their benefits in recent weeks.

See related: Guide to rising credit card interest rates

Citi Prestige card will soon offer cellphone protection

Cardholders willing to pay $495 a year for the Citi Prestige card will soon have another benefit to look forward to: cellphone insurance protection that covers up to $1,000 per claim and up to $1,500 a year in total damages. According to The Points Guy, Citi will launch the new benefit in May and will offer it to any Prestige cardholder who pays for their cellphone bill with the Prestige card.

Citi’s coverage amount is significantly more generous than the cellphone protection plans that other cards offer. For example, Wells Fargo rewards cards, such as the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa Card, offer protection for up to $600 per claim and up to $1,200 total per year.

U.S. Bank offers an identical policy on the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card.

Barclays offers just $600 total in cell phone protection coverage on the Uber Visa Card. Meanwhile, Fifth Third Bank offers $200 in supplemental coverage.

That said, the banks’ offers are still more generous than most credit cards. The majority of general market credit cards don’t offer cellphone protection coverage at all.

CreditCards.com’s Weekly Rate Report

Avg. APR Last week 6 months ago
National average17.65%17.64%16.92%
Low interest14.63%14.63%13.99%
Cash back17.58%17.58%17.09%
Balance transfer16.88%16.87%16.21%
Business15.24%15.24%14.59%
Student17.79%17.79%16.98%
Airline17.50%17.50%16.93%
Rewards17.52%17.51%16.92%
Instant approval20.06%20.06%19.45%
Bad credit25.33%25.33%24.18%
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.)
Source: CreditCards.com
Updated: March 13, 2019

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Credit Card Rate Report Updated: June 12th, 2019
Business
15.61%
Airline
17.54%
Cash Back
17.68%
Reward
17.57%
Student
17.79%

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