Posts Tagged 'letter'

Citi adds $60 annual fee

Citi's annual fee

Bad news if you’re a Citi credit card customer, says Connecticut Watchdog:

Many Citi cardholders are receiving letters about a $60 annual fee that is being added to their account effective April 1, 2010. If consumers make $2,400 in purchases during the year, then the annual fee will be credited back to their account.

It appears that Citi’s test of adding an annual fee to a small percentage of their customers in August of 2009 proved successful for the issuer. At that time, Citi began charging some cardholders an annual fee of $30 to $90 unless they spent at least $2,400 per year. Now a far greater number of customers are receiving this notice.

A representative from Citi says they’re imposing the hefty annual fee to “maintain the quality of our service amid the rising cost of doing business.”

So they mess up the economy, and you pay. Get it?

I first saw this on a Simple Dollar post, where a long-time Citi customer got the same letter, despite his years of loyalty. You can read the full letter at the Consumerist blog.

Is that any way to treat your customers?

We treat our members a little differently. To get our perspective, visit WeUnderstand.org and let us know what YOU think of all this annual fee nonsense.

Exposed: American Express raises fees

amexfees

One of our employees here at the credit union received this letter from American Express informing them that – guess what? – AmEx is raising rates and fees.

Big surprise, right? We’ve seen this before.

AmEx calls it a “price change notification,” which translates as “you’re going to pay more to use an American Express card.” For example, our American 1 employee will pay prime rate plus 21.99% APR on any cash advances, which – as of today – equals 25.24%. Here at American 1, our cash advance rate is the same as our everyday Visa rate.

This letter is another example of big bank credit card companies raising their fees and interest rates to bail themselves out of the mess they got themselves into. And you pay the price for their mistakes.

For more information on big bank credit cards, visit our Top Secret Visa site.

ScamWatch: the old cash-and-send-back scam

We recently had a member come in with a check for almost $3,000, along with a letter that said if she cashed the check, put the money into a cashier check, and sent it back, the company would send her a $50,000 “federal grant.”

Now, right away your fraud sense should be tingling. But to this member, that sense was silent.

Sadly, the member had already sent $300 of her own money to this company to get the process started. When an American 1 employee told this member that the deal was most likely a scam, the member disagreed and walked off in a huff. She probably went and tried to get the check cashed at another financial institution to get the “deal” rolling.

Friends, this is definitely a scam. Any agency that sends you a check, asks you to cash it, and send the money back in a cashier check is dealing with fraud. Why would anyone ask you to do something so silly, unless the original check was a fraudulent check?

Yes, these are tought times, and yes, families can use all the help they can get. But this is no time to fall for scams like a free $50,000 “federal grant” that comes out of nowhere.

Be on guard against mailings and e-mails that sound too good to be true. Because…well, you know the rest.



American 1 Federal Credit Union