The three worst credit cards to have

Credit card companies are going into survival mode, charging even good-paying customers high interest rates and cutting their limits.

Because of the recession, many credit cards are no longer beneficial to customers. The lending crash and overall state of the economy have caused many problems with finding finances. Defaulting loans have sent credit card companies into a panic, forcing them to try to mitigate their losses any way possible.

The lending crash

The number of people defaulting on loans has caused credit card companies to go into survival mode, charging even good customers high interest rates and cutting their limits. Because of Credit Card Reform, many companies are trying to squeeze as many dollars out of the American public as they can before heavy restrictions begin. If you have a credit card, it has most likely changed drastically this past year. According to Cardratings.com, Indexcreditcards.com and Lowcards.com, there is a list of the worst credit cards to have. Here are some of them:

Macy’s credit card

Although, in general, retail credit cards are not beneficial to customers’ finances or credit, Macy’s manages to be worse. Justin McHenry of Indexcreditcards.com stated, “Almost without fail, retail cards charge exorbitant interest rates. The worst offender I know of is the Macy’s credit card, with its 23.99 percent interest rate…but cards from J.C. Penney, American Eagle, Gap and J. Crew all come in at rates of over 20 percent.”

Many people apply with the hopes of getting an immediate discount on purchases; they don’t realize that the same discount could be had if they found a major credit card with a deep discount. McHenry added, “If you really want a store credit card, try to get a store card associated with Visa, MasterCard or American Express—those cards generally have interest rates lower than the store-only credit cards…for example, I just got a Banana Republic Visa with an interest rate of 14.24 percent. Compare that to Banana Republic’s store-only card, which charges a rate of 21.9 percent.” The key is to not carry a high balance, but still benefit from a card you can utilize at a variety of places.

Money Return Platinum Plus Visa from Bank of America

Initially this may look like a good deal. They advertise 0 percent on balance transfers, no annual fees, and a 10 percent cash rebate. However, you only get the 10 percent cash back if you carry a balance. And carrying a balance costs from 9.99 percent to 19.99 perent. Curtis Arnold of CardRatings.com stated, “So you pay up to almost a 20 percent APR to earn (back) only 10 percent of your interest that you pay out of your pocket. Doesn’t take a math genius to figure out that this is a lose-lose proposition.”

Centennial Gold MasterCard from First Premier Bank

This is a bad-credit card and offers bad options to suit. Arnold said, “The subprime card boasts a 9.9 percent fixed rate, an amazing rate for any subprime offer.” However, there are more terms to the card that aren’t so beneficial. There is a one-time setup fee of $29 and a one-time program-fee of $95. There is an additional $48 annual fee attached, along with an additional $7 monthly service-fee. Arnold added, “So if you get approved for a $250 line of credit, you’re out $256 in fees during your first year of card membership and only have $71 available credit your first month.”

Beneficial cards

Consumers looking for credit cards need to be wise and research their options. Many card companies are using advertisements that are true on the surface, but when you read the fine print, a wide variety of additional fees and rules are revealed. Be smart and understand what your card is offering. It may take some time, but you can find cards that benefit your lifestyle.

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