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  1. #1
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    Default Blah

    I've been disappointed in the rewards offerings of cards on the market. I keep waiting for the next Cash + or something similar. I may start apping for cards just to get the sign up bonus. I really don't want any new cards, unless they are awesome.

    Everytime I look at the Freedom, I'm not that impressed because I already have GAS at 5% all year round.

    The CSP has a nice sign up bonus, but it only gives double points. I can get double points with the Discover miles with no annual fee.

    The Citi Dividend has sorry categories.

    I'm looking for the next big thing.
    Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
    Plane tickets: CSP
    Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
    Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
    Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
    Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
    Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
    Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
    Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
    Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
    Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward
    Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape
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  2. #2
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    I think the major banks are learning their lesson about not putting too good cards on the market because its not their point of optimal profit. I think once each one has found out at what point adding too many rewards will lower profits they won't offer such a credit card again. I think the next CC to be curtailed even more is going to be the Citi Forward Card, rather than a major bank offering a new "awesome" card.
    Sole Ownership Cards:
    1st Financial Bank Platinum Student Visa, $500 CL, Open Since 3/2012
    Citi Forward Student Visa, $6k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex, $6k CL, Backdates to 1/2012
    SallieMae Rewards Barclay Mastercard, $2.5k CL, Open Since 4/2013
    Jointly Owned Cards (co-owner with mom, not AU, used and paid only by me):
    Chase Amazon Rewards Visa Signature, $2k CL, Open Since 8/2012
    US Bank Cash+ Visa Signature, $13.5k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Authorized User (Parents Pay/Use)
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex $29.4k CL, AU since 11/2012
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bksuper View Post
    I think the major banks are learning their lesson about not putting too good cards on the market because its not their point of optimal profit. I think once each one has found out at what point adding too many rewards will lower profits they won't offer such a credit card again. I think the next CC to be curtailed even more is going to be the Citi Forward Card, rather than a major bank offering a new "awesome" card.
    And since Citi Forward is points rather than straight cash back, they can easily "adjust", making the card less valuable without announcing changing. So e.g. yes, all the usual categories 5x, it's just that the redemption value gets halved

    But I have no idea if the Forward is losing money. I would put Penfed Plat Rewards next, as that too have a non-viable model when used just for gas and groceries.
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    ^Penfed is a Credit Union, not a bank though, which means they are not as profit-centric, and they make the card really hard to get, as if you aren't in the military, you have to join their credit union by paying money, and you have to be in it to apply. As to Citibank adjusting the value of points, that is the first step, but that would effect their potentially more profitable, limited rewards cards. I take them canning the non-student version as a signal they think they are overextended with the existing rewards structure.
    Sole Ownership Cards:
    1st Financial Bank Platinum Student Visa, $500 CL, Open Since 3/2012
    Citi Forward Student Visa, $6k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex, $6k CL, Backdates to 1/2012
    SallieMae Rewards Barclay Mastercard, $2.5k CL, Open Since 4/2013
    Jointly Owned Cards (co-owner with mom, not AU, used and paid only by me):
    Chase Amazon Rewards Visa Signature, $2k CL, Open Since 8/2012
    US Bank Cash+ Visa Signature, $13.5k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Authorized User (Parents Pay/Use)
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex $29.4k CL, AU since 11/2012
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bksuper View Post
    ^Penfed is a Credit Union, not a bank though, which means they are not as profit-centric, and they make the card really hard to get, as if you aren't in the military, you have to join their credit union by paying money, and you have to be in it to apply. As to Citibank adjusting the value of points, that is the first step, but that would effect their potentially more profitable, limited rewards cards. I take them canning the non-student version as a signal they think they are overextended with the existing rewards structure.
    Agree about Penfed. Re points: note that Forward already has a different redemption structure from the other cards, so changing forward wouldn't impact that directly.

    Now I have no idea why they removed it from the site, but two recent things point in the other direction a) the removal of the annual cap, b) the recent spate of special offers giving extra points on other categories (yes with a very low cap, but still!)
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  6. #6
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    I agree. I'm not worried about the forward or the penfed card.

    I'm sure not everyone is paying their balance before they accrue interest. I argued in the my fico forum that they can't be losing that much money and are probably making money on the whole. I could be wrong though.
    Gas: Discover It, Penfed Platinum Rewards x2, Chase freedom, Citi TYP
    Plane tickets: CSP
    Groceries: AMEX BCP, Penfed Platinum Rewards,Citi TYP
    Clothes: Express, Amex BCP, Discover IT
    Amazon: Citi Forward, Cash +
    Restaurants: Citi Forward, Chase Freedom, Discover IT, CSP
    Hotels and other travel: Discover Escape, CSP
    Movies: BofA travel rewards visa signature(fandango), Discover IT, Citi Forward, Freedom
    Bars, clubs, tomfoolery: CSP, Citi Forward, Discover IT, Freedom
    Balance transfers: Kroger 123 rewards
    Bill Pay: Chase Ink Plus, Citi Forward
    Everyday spending: Bofa Accelerated cash rewards amex, Discover Escape
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  7. #7
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    ^The question isn't whether they're making or losing money for the big banks (PenFed is slightly different), its where the marginal cost of giving better rewards and paying out more plus having a certain portion of their customers "abuse" it by only using the card on the things that net the most rewards, then pay the balance in full, equals the marginal revenue from having more people enticed to get the card but use it in a way that is profitable to the bank (charge everything to it, not just top tier rewards category and/or carry the balance). They are about maximizing profit, not just making it.
    Sole Ownership Cards:
    1st Financial Bank Platinum Student Visa, $500 CL, Open Since 3/2012
    Citi Forward Student Visa, $6k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex, $6k CL, Backdates to 1/2012
    SallieMae Rewards Barclay Mastercard, $2.5k CL, Open Since 4/2013
    Jointly Owned Cards (co-owner with mom, not AU, used and paid only by me):
    Chase Amazon Rewards Visa Signature, $2k CL, Open Since 8/2012
    US Bank Cash+ Visa Signature, $13.5k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Authorized User (Parents Pay/Use)
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex $29.4k CL, AU since 11/2012
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  8. Centurion Member MemberSince99's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bksuper View Post
    ^The question isn't whether they're making or losing money for the big banks (PenFed is slightly different), its where the marginal cost of giving better rewards and paying out more plus having a certain portion of their customers "abuse" it by only using the card on the things that net the most rewards, then pay the balance in full, equals the marginal revenue from having more people enticed to get the card but use it in a way that is profitable to the bank (charge everything to it, not just top tier rewards category and/or carry the balance). They are about maximizing profit, not just making it.
    I realize that you put "abuse" in quotes, but I just really don't like that term in the context of offering customers an incentive and the customers using that incentive that you of your own free will offered to them.
    If maximizing your profits is ok and good and so on then what's wrong with maximizing your rewards? I'm sorry I've just never subscribed to the theory that anyone can take advantage of you wihtout your permission, and I've never subscribed to the theory that taking a promotion which is offered of a free will to you is "abuse".
    Frankly, if anyone wants to actually talk about "abuse", I feel pretty "abused" by the fact that my taxes which are higher than hell anyway went so some of the banking execs could get lucrative bonuses, go to exclusive resorts, and buy out their competitors. Now THAT is 'abuse", in my opinion. It's also another story. But that's an example of me not agreeing to do this but being literally forced by threat of imprisonment to pay up. No one forced them to give us a dime in rewards money.
    Hopefully the difference is pretty clear.
    FICOS
    TU: 785 January 2014
    EQ: 772 January 2014
    EX: 773 January 2014
    TU08 (Barclay's) 794 January 2014

    Cards:
    Associated Bank Accelerated Rewards Signature Visa 21.5k (05/12)
    Chase Sapphire Preferred Signature Visa 5k (5/13)
    Amex Gold NPSL (5/13 - backdated to 5/99)
    Barclay's Arrival World MasterCard 10k (11/13)
    Citi Dividend Visa 6.3k (12/13)
    Chase Freedom Signature Visa 7k (1/14)
    Bank of America Travel Rewards Signature Visa 10k (2/14)
    Discover IT 4.5k (2/14)
    Amex Everyday Preferred 2k (3/14 - backdated to 3/99)

    Garden: Card carrying Garden Club member. Gardening until 2014!
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  9. #9
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    ^Nothing is wrong ethically with maximizing your rewards, but they (the banks) have to account for the costs of having a certain rewards structure where a certain portion of their customers can and will use the card in a way that is a loss for the bank. They're willing to put up with it when by offering that program they are able to attract lots of applicants who shop around for 1-2 cards but then don't hassle with maximizing rewards across a large portfolio of cards i.e. the customers that make them money. But when the marginal increase in rewards brings in less revenue this way then it costs providing the extra rewards and having more exposure to people's maximization of their rewards through offering the best rewards program, then they're not at their optimum and they'll cut back. Its simple marketing (Business-Marketing is my desired major in school).
    Sole Ownership Cards:
    1st Financial Bank Platinum Student Visa, $500 CL, Open Since 3/2012
    Citi Forward Student Visa, $6k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex, $6k CL, Backdates to 1/2012
    SallieMae Rewards Barclay Mastercard, $2.5k CL, Open Since 4/2013
    Jointly Owned Cards (co-owner with mom, not AU, used and paid only by me):
    Chase Amazon Rewards Visa Signature, $2k CL, Open Since 8/2012
    US Bank Cash+ Visa Signature, $13.5k CL, Open Since 10/2012
    Authorized User (Parents Pay/Use)
    Costco TrueEarnings Amex $29.4k CL, AU since 11/2012
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  10. #10
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    OK, just replace the loaded word "abuse" with "behavior that didn't meet the bank's planned method of use", which might merely reflect badly on the bank's planning! So this includes things like spending only on high-reward categories, "fake" spending via amazon payments to yourself/vanilla reloads/ etc down to real abuse, like falsely disputing purchases, cloning cards etc.

    But whatever, it is all basically a game:

    a) Bank puts forward its offer
    b) People adopt the card and use it in various ways
    c) If the bank decides things aren't right, it changes the rules.

    I don't think you can coherently maintain unlimited rights to b) and then complain strongly when c) happens (as in Cash Plus) They go together in that c allows the bank to recover from things they didn't foresee in b.
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