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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

JP Morgan Chase Credit Card Hurts Consumers but Looks Good to Wall Street Investors. What's Good for Wall Street is not necessarily Good for US.

(Edit Note). This topic got me so angry that I have started a protest website against Chase Bank and anybody else who follows them down their racketeering path.

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Chase Credit Card already was lambasted by its customers for wanting to charge a 10 dollar a month "user fee". The 10 dollar monthly fee would have instantly made Chase a violator of their low interest fixed rate lifetime balance transfer offer, but Chase tried it anyways and had to be rebuffed by the New York Attorneys General office and Chase customers before removing the monthly fee.

In an effort to impress Wall Street by increasing their revenue, JP Morgan / Chase Credit Card has now decided that a customer's right to "opt out" to new changes in Chase's Credit Card terms no longer exists.

Chase Credit Card has opted out of allowing its customers to opt out of new Credit Card Rules that forces the consumer to increase their monthly minimum payment by 250 percent!

I believe Chase Credit card will probably have improved financial results next quarter because of their boorish tactics, and that Wall Street and the News channels will report Chase's "success" as "good news". The news statios will then conclude that the economy is recovering. What won't be reported is the misery the change in terms Chase has wrought upon good, honest people who were diligently paying down their debts and were not allowed to "opt out" when Chase raised their monthly minimum charge by 250 percent.

Hundreds of thousands of Chase Credit Card Customers accepted Chase's offer of low, fixed interest credit card rate balance transfer offers with rates that would never go up on the amount transfered if the customer was never late on their monthly payment. These customers have now been forced to accept a jump in their monthly minimum payment from 2% to 5%, or, they can keep the 2% monthly minimum payment but have their interest rate increased from 5.99% to 7.99%.

Ironically, I created a website a few years ago that demanded credit card companies raise their minimum monthly billing by a factor of 3 or 4 (aka 6% or 8%) called credit-card-cap.com. However, my idea was to raise the monthly minimum payment on new debt by beginning borrowers, NOT OLD DEBT in which such tactics can just burst a families tender economic bubble.

The changes Chase is making would be fine, as long as the customer had the right to "opt out" of these new changes. "opt out"means the customer is in essence closing out their account at the terms that were in play when the customer agreed to the original credit card balance transfer loan. When "opting out", the customer further agrees to continue to pay off the debt while no longer using the credit card. "opt out" is a fair and righteous protection that should be automatically granted to all consumers when dealing with credit card companies, yet the "opt out" option has never been given teeth by those who claim to protect us.

Our government, our consumer rights advocates, our president, and our congress people don't seem to think that you, the consumer, have a right to "opt out" and stick to the original credit card agreement that you signed up for. A deal is only a deal as long as the credit card companies can change it later on, without any recourse from you but to IMMEDIATELY pay off the ENTIRE debt or accept new terms which most often favor the credit card company and hurt the consumer.

Until credit card customers have the undeniable right to "opt out" from any sudden or new changes regarding the terms of their existing credit card agreement before the changes are made, the consumer will continue to get royally railroaded even as Wall Street and the financial news programs cheer the increase in revenue these leveraged consumer bashing manuevers will probably bring to the credit-card-companies.

Maybe the day is coming when ACORN will demand Barack Obama actually be for the consumer. Surely what Chase Credit Card just did is a strong start towards getting ACORN hopping mad, especially if Barack Obama does not intercede and demand that consumers have the right to "opt out" of changes made to their prior credit card agreement.

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