January 03, 2008
Austin, Texas - Interest rates for select major credit card categories were unchanged to slightly higher this week, even as the release of minutes from December's Federal Reserve meeting showed policy makers believe another interest rate cut may be necessary.
A majority of banks index their credit card annual percentage rates (APRs) to the prime rate, which moves in lock step with Fed decisions. According to the Fed, 54 percent of issuers tie card interest rates to prime, with most banks adjusting variable rates 30 days or one billing cycle after a change in the prime rate.
Rates for card categories tracked by CreditCards.com are listed below:
|Credit Card Rate Averages|
The minutes showed that some members of the Federal Open Market Committee saw threats to the economy as potentially requiring "a substantial further easing of policy," even as members noted that an unexpected improvement in market conditions could make a "reversal" of some of the rate cuts appropriate. The Fed's next policy meeting is scheduled for the end of this month.
Tomorrow's release of the December employment report will provide a window onto the job market for 2008. Should the threat of unemployment curtail consumer spending, the economy could be seriously impacted, since more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity is based on consumer expenditures.
The CreditCards.com credit card rate survey is conducted weekly using data from the leading card issuers in the United States.
Introductory offer periods and regular interest rates can vary depending on applicants' credit quality and issuer risk-based pricing policies.
CreditCards.com is a leading online credit card marketplace connecting consumers with multiple credit card issuers, including nine of the ten largest in the United States, based on credit card transaction volume. Through its website, https://www.creditcards.com/, CreditCards.com enables consumers to search for, compare and apply for more than 150 credit cards and offers credit card issuers an online channel to acquire qualified applicants.
For more information, contact:
Director of Marketing
512-996-8663, ext. 106
NOTE TO EDITORS: The information contained in this release is available for print or broadcast with attribution to CreditCards.com.