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donden
Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Wed, 18th Feb '09 8:10 PM

A POSITIVE THOUGHT ON THE BANKING SYSTEM.

Last week when I was going through the check-out at a local garden store my VISA card was flagged when I tried to scan it. The cashier called the 800 number that came up on the read out and was informed that I may be involved in an identity theft. She gave me the phone and after answering a few security questions the rep said that there were a couple of entries on my card that were made that very morning and not consistent with my purchasing history. After verifying that one of the attempts was made before I even got out of bed and the other while I was at a friends business they immediately canceled my card and began the process of issuing a new number. My only inconvenience is waiting a few days for my new cards. Just wanted to mention this as the Bank of America has been the target of a lot of criticism lately and I appreciate the fact that they shut down the a$$hole that was trying to be me.
Thanks,
DD

tuzilla
Tuzilla  (Level: 133.8 - Posts: 3777)
Wed, 18th Feb '09 8:36 PM

Give the person who caught it, not the CEO, a big bonus.

donden
Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Wed, 18th Feb '09 8:37 PM

Agreed!

collioure
Collioure  (Level: 104.7 - Posts: 9952)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 3:13 AM

Someone would want to be you?

Congratulations!

collioure
Collioure  (Level: 104.7 - Posts: 9952)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 6:18 AM

Actually on reflection it's easy to understand why Americans are so angry at the banks. Those are the people who charge these astronomical interest rates on their personal credit card balances.

And now they have to be bailed out???

Whoa, brother !!!

And what you might still not know is that many banks have these "traders" sitting in front of computer screens all day long day after day. When they closed out the positions of a "trader" in Paris, Société Générale had lost 5 billion euros ($7 billion).

How were banks allowed to become so greedy

, Mr Greenspan?

donden
Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 10:42 AM

The interest rate doesn't concern me. I have paid my balance in full every month for over two years. In early 2006 I went crazy with the card when I was working on one of my old car projects. Those "astronomical" rates (11%) showed me the way to spend wiser. I also live in a house that I can afford and buy cars that I can actually pay for and I drink California wine.
That reminds me, did you know that many of the French vineyards are growing grapes that were started from cuttings imported from California when they re-established their products after WWII? Just thought I would mention that,
DD

cujgie
Cujgie  (Level: 173.4 - Posts: 754)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 11:54 AM

Mastercard recently sent me an email that the threshold I had set for purchases had been exceeded and wondered if I was aware of that particular purchase or did I want to stop my card. It turned out that my husband that morning had used the card to pay his dentist for a crown (insurance will kick in later). I've received emails and even phone calls re my Visa and Discover cards and their possible illegal usage.

Don't kick the CEO. It might have been his idea in the first place.

collioure
Collioure  (Level: 104.7 - Posts: 9952)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 1:27 PM

Don, my credit card bill has been paid automatically for decades, but 11% while high for us is low when put up against the rates they now charge - 20% or 30%, I believe.

aquamar
Aquamar  (Level: 178.6 - Posts: 909)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 6:18 PM

Must be an epidemic because I just received a letter from my bank saying that numbers had been stolen and mine was one of them. They will of course take care of any illegal transactions but geeeeeeeeez just to think that someone could wipe out my account keeps me up at night.

caramel1
Caramel1  (Level: 128.2 - Posts: 21596)
Thu, 19th Feb '09 6:28 PM

At least on paper Countrywide holds my mortgage-hard to tell or find out who actually does though. A short time back they sent me a message that employees -former I am assuming-had sold mortgage holder private information. As a result they paid for me to have access to the 3 major credit monitoring agencies. I get emails about any activity on my credit-nice of them I suppose-Linda

wordster
Wordster  (Level: 159.4 - Posts: 910)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 3:54 AM

You think 11% is high? Come to Britain my Visa card is 18.9% and store cards are typically around 24.9% (I don't have any).
So far I haven't had anybody trying to steal my identity. You must be better looking and don't have bandy legs like me or maybe you're rich! By the way British people are pretty angry with the banks too.
The other day my bank told me if I started a checking account with £1000 I would get 6% interest for a year! Right now my savings account with them is about 3%! My other bank is just about to cut my checking account interest from 0.1% to NOTHING! Hmmm! If you want a mortgage you have to pay £600 - £1000 pounds (booking/set-up fee) just to see the manager!
They call that business!

collioure
Collioure  (Level: 104.7 - Posts: 9952)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 5:21 AM

I might note here that if you have idle money today (and tomorrow), a good idea is to pay down credit card balances or some of your mortgage which was at 5-6-7-8%. You can't invest at those rates anywhere today.

larefamiliaris
Larefamiliaris  (Level: 135.2 - Posts: 877)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 6:25 AM

Don - I'm happy for you. A damn shame that someone so alert wasn't in charge of your (our) bank(s) in the first place.

Wordster - my Amex card just put up their apr to a little over 19%. I shall be 'tarting' with alacrity from now on. My savings account went from 5.5% to zero in less than 3 months - which, as it happens, not only matched the balance but also reflected the demise of what was the oldest UK financial institution in existence...

And, fwiw, I agree with Colliure. Any spare cash (if anyone currently has such a thing ) should go straight into your credit black hole. And, furthermore, may I humbly advocate 'tarting' yourself (and your balances) to other banks/credit companies on a regular basis, to take advantage of the myriad of 0% rates offered to new customers. None of these companies have been loyal to you: return the favour with - ahem - interest.

Viva la Revolution!

tsk9653
Tsk9653  (Level: 113.2 - Posts: 1466)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 10:54 AM

This thread is quite amusing to me. I, too, have had a similar experience to Donden's, but I do not feel any need to thank corporate America for its actions. In my case -- actually cases, with different issuers -- their was no fraud, and I was inconvenienced. In any event, the fact is that if a credit card is fraudulently used, the credit card issuer would have ultimate legal responsibility. To the extent that the issuer actually spots a fraud, I agree it is a good thing, but why should I thank the credit card issuer for protecting its own economic interests? Credit card fraud units of banks are about minimizing the issuers' losses -- not doing the right thing by customers.

I recently discovered that a payment I mailed to a credit card issuer had never arrived. Before I ever got a late notice or, indeed, a new statement, I called the issuer to explain the situation, and asked that any late fees -- I wasn't even asking for removal of the interest charges -- be removed. The card issuer refused, even though the representative admitted that I had not missed nor made late payments historically. Instead, they tried to get me to allow them to automatically debit my checking account for payments. My wife signed up for automatic payment on one occasion with a company. It took me maybe four months after the "service" was cancelled to get them to stop debiting my account, involving many phone calls with the company and my bank.

Corporate America acts in its own self-interest. Corporations exist for the sole purpose of making money for their owners -- although public corporations have all too frequently become captives of management (usually supported by a large shareholder or two, who is often part of day-to-day management) -- who screw shareholders for their personal aggrandizement. I suppose its nice when the corporation's economic self-interest happens to coincide with consumer interest, but, again, I really see no reason to thank the corporation for doing something that happens to advance its self-interest.

tsk9653
Tsk9653  (Level: 113.2 - Posts: 1466)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 11:06 AM

Here is another experience with banks that I and other people have had. I had my checkbook stolen on one occassion. I called the bank to report this and tell it not to cash checks in a certain range of numbers. The bank representative tried to get me to pay for stop orders at $25 a pop to protect myself. As a lawyer, I kew that I would not be liable if any of the checks were cashed on forged signatures, and so told the representative. The representative at least initially still tried to get me to pay for stop orders, but i told her the bank could protect itself if it wanted to -- that I would not pay the bank to protect itself. (I certainly know other people who have paid a bank to protect itself in similar circumstances.) So, I guess to this extent Donden's story was "heartwarming" -- the bank wasn't trying to get him to pay it money to protect itself.

jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 12:42 PM

I'm all for paying credit and gratitude where due and a kick in the butt where a kick is due.

Blaming everybody because some "somebody done ya wrong" is missplaced rage. The entire world could use a bit more gratitude for what does work. There's enough that doesn't.

And let's get out there and kick some backside (boycott? picket?) that which doesn't work.

tsk9653
Tsk9653  (Level: 113.2 - Posts: 1466)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 1:58 PM

I, of course, disagree that it constitutes "misplaced rage" to be knowledgable about the structural realities of the United States and to refuse to feel appreciation for the institutions that largely control life in America -- its structural democratic form notwithstanding -- because on some occasions these institutions' self-interest coincide with the broader public interest. I see no need to "appreciate" overbearing and over-reaching institutions because once in awhile they do something which may benefit the public, when that something is not done because of the public benefits that act bestows but, rather, because it is in these institutions' self-interest to undertake the particular act. In fact, I suggest that many of the problems of America arise precisely because so many citizens are placated by the occasional act motivated by, as one example, corporate self-interest that happens to incidentally benefit more than just the corporation.

jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 2:02 PM

Why do you "of course" disagree?
And I only said it is missplaced rage to be angry at one group that DIDN'T do you wrong, just because somebody else DID do you wrong.

The rest of your paragraph? I have a bass player that rambles about nothing like that.

tsk9653
Tsk9653  (Level: 113.2 - Posts: 1466)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 2:13 PM

Actually, under some circumstances, a consumer can be held liable for up to $50 in fraudulent charges. This limitation arose of federal legislation which was, of course, opposed by the banking industry. Incidentally, the rules relating to debit cards and electronic fund transfers are much more favorable to banks when it comes to sticking customer-victims than those relating to credit cards and checks.

tsk9653
Tsk9653  (Level: 113.2 - Posts: 1466)
Sat, 21st Feb '09 2:28 PM

Jank: I don't even understand the point you are trying to make with respect to my third post on this thread -- the one that includes "of course". Indeed, based on your response to that posting, I'm no longer even confident that I understand your posting that immediately followed by two initial posts on this topic. I think, however, that my point is clear: I feel no gratitude to a corporation for taking steps to protect its own economic self-interest just because it randomly happens to benefit me as well. Maybe I misunderstood your response to my first two points, which I took as favoring feelings of gratitude to essentially amoral corporate institutions when they do something that incidentally bestows a benefit on a consumer -- although "that something" is really motivated by corporate self-interest.



jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Sun, 22nd Feb '09 9:53 PM

You seem to forget a very basic fact about Credit Card Companies:

Those "overbearing and over-reaching institutions" are LENDING YOU MONEY to buy something for which you can't afford to pay cash.

Now - you complain about corporations and greed and mismanagement of banks and institutions of finance. They're in the mess they're in, and they're dragging down the entire country, because of, among other things, the way they have mishandled loans, mortgages, etc.

Yet - in this instance, a Credit Card Company is NOT mismanaging their funds - they are staying on top of ID theft/card theft, trying to nip it in the bud, to protect themselves and the consumer.

After all, if they DIDN'T handle things and try to protect themselves against the "overbearing and over-reaching GREEDY CONSUMERS" who are every day coming up with new ways to rip off both companies and consumers, they would be negligent and part of the bigger economic problem. All that credit card fraud over the years has greatly increased credit card interest rates and hurt the entire economic system.

Every company has more than a right to protect itself from being ripped off by consumers - in fact, it has the duty to do so. This Credit Card Company is to be commended for its actions to thwart what it received as a red flag on what might have been theft.

And you STILL don't have a good word to say.

What does it take to make you happy, TSK? You have no words of gratitude or positive input about anything except...well, you know.

I think we should all show a bit of gratitude to companies that handle their finances correctly - that's one more company our taxes don't have to bail out.

kaufman
Kaufman  (Level: 256.8 - Posts: 3936)
Sun, 22nd Feb '09 10:12 PM

Nope, I can afford to pay cash. But when I can wait 45 or so days to pay it while my money makes its 0.05% interest, why the hell not.

Now if the credit card people charged interest halfway close to what the banks offer, I wouldn't be calling for the skewering and immolation of their usurious buttocks.

jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Sun, 22nd Feb '09 10:19 PM

You have the money to pay cash, yet you are asking a financial institution to lend you money for a few days at no interest at all because you pay your bill in full each month.

And yet you're criticizing them, calling them skewering and immolating? You of all people should be thanking them. Cause apparently they're going out on a limb for you, and they don't get anything back for it.



kaufman
Kaufman  (Level: 256.8 - Posts: 3936)
Sun, 22nd Feb '09 10:43 PM

They make the rules. If I didn't like them, I wouldn't patronize them.

But just because I can slide by them, that doesn't mean I don't think what they're doing is immoral.

larrybus
Larrybus  (Level: 307.2 - Posts: 383)
Sun, 22nd Feb '09 10:45 PM

Jank, before you get too carried away praising the altruism and generosity of the credit card companies, they get plenty of compensation for their business.

In addition to the usurious interest rates and obscene fees they charge their cardholders, they get approximately 2-3 percent of every transaction from the businesses that accept their card. They also receive regular membership fees from those businesses.


jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 6:31 AM

I'm just saying Don is not wrong to be grateful to BOA for their quick actions. And it's right to be grateful to a large corporation that does a good job, especially when there are so many that are fiscally irresponsible these days.

We're all so quick to jump on the bandwagon to condemn somebody/something that does us wrong. We should equally be ready to jump on the bandwagon to support responsible actions.

wordster
Wordster  (Level: 159.4 - Posts: 910)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 2:12 PM

Jank sometimes I use a credit card because I don't have enough cash on me to pay. Also in Britain many stores no longer accept checks. The banks used to cover checks up to £50. So even if the person didn't have any money in their account the store would still get a minimum of £50. When the banks stopped covering checks many places stopped accepting them.
Credit/bank card payments are also much cheaper for stores to process than cash or checks. They positively want us to pay by card! And what about on-line purchases?

kaufman
Kaufman  (Level: 256.8 - Posts: 3936)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 6:00 PM

PS: Use cash when you can. Makes it harder for Them to track you.

donden
Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 6:44 PM

Ken is right. Visa acted because of "purchases not consistent with my normal buying habits" or something like that. Makes you wonder just how much they DO track you.

jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 6:53 PM

Just like a bookkeeper has a ledger with all your purchases and expenditures, it has everything you do with THEIR money. They'd be remiss not to.

Would you expect them NOT to track it?

I have a credit card, and they provide a service every month of separating out each different kind of purchase so you can track exactly how much you spent for what kind of purchase (fuel, groceries, etc.) Makes it much easier for ME to track, too.

jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Mon, 23rd Feb '09 6:55 PM

You labeled it "A Positive Thought." I thought I was positively being positive and appreciating you for your positiveness. And I am. Please don't get all caught up in everybody's negativism and lose your positiveness. I don't wanna hang out here alone.

donden
Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Tue, 24th Feb '09 8:57 AM

I'm positive about my positiveness. My comment about tracking was a general one and not meant to be negative. I really DO wonder how much big brother types know about me. I remember a few years ago I read where the government creates an informal profile on citizens based solely on the magazines they subscribe to. At that time my *subs would have had their experts totally confused. I appreciate your support Jank, and my initial post still stands, and I would like to thank BOA again.

* Soldier of Fortune
National Lampoon
" Geographic
Evergreen Review
Easy Rider
Cycle
Rod & Custom
Michigan History
and others I think I was a right wing democrat, bike loving hot-rodder with a warped sense of humor and violent tendencies that loved to travel to historically significant places. Scary!


jank0614
Jank0614  (Level: 67.1 - Posts: 4597)
Tue, 24th Feb '09 10:59 PM

Who isn't.


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