Consumer Guide to Credit Cards

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We support reforms to the financial marketplace that protect consumers from unscrupulous banks and lenders.

By Consumers Union on Friday, February 19th, 2010

Do you have trouble reading those complicated change in terms notices from your credit card company? Is it impossible to keep track of all the different fees and rates that apply to your card? Well the Federal Reserve Board has put together a very helpful interactive online guide that can help you better understand the way credit cards work, now that you’ve got new protections under the CARD Act.

The site provides information about these topics and much more:

– Credit card offers

– Your statement

– Credit card repayment calculator

– Summaries of the law

– Tips for improving your credit score

– A glossary explanation various financial terms

If you have a complaint about your credit card, the site provides a sample complaint letter that you can use as a template, as well as information about where to complain. It answers questions about what to do if you lose your credit card, defines the different types of cards you may encounter in the marketplace, discusses your rights with respect to billing errors and provides tips for managing your credit.

Now that there is a strong law in effect which protects you from the most unfair credit card traps, use this guide to educate yourself, so that you can use credit cards effectively for the benefit of your personal financial freedom, not the big banks!

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