Wednesday, October 21, 2009

An Early Happy Holidays from Citibank

19 years ago I signed up for the 'AT&T Universal Card' which was a Master Card as well as a phone card because I thought it would be good for my work travel. I probably have not used it as a phone card in 15 years due to having a cell phone but I have probably only been late on at most 3 payments in the 19 years. Yesterday I got a letter from Citibank letting me know that the interest was being changed to Prime + 26.74% effective Nov 30, but if I want I can choose not to accept.

I of course called Citibank today to find out WTF was this about because it seemed really strange since my last bill had a few hundred dollar credit from me paying wrong credit card earlier in month. Since I have learned 'market conditions' have forced this change which really means we are trying to screw the customers as hard as we can before some new government regulations take effect I would like to call on my readers to take the following steps:

1) Cancel any Citibank cards that are not carrying a balance.
2) Open new credit elsewhere and do a balance transfer to pay off Citibank cardsand then cancel.
3) Anyone that is holding a mortgage that is dramatically underwater should walk away from the mortgage.
4) Write to your Congressman and let them know that Citibank is not 'too big to fail' instead they are 'too greedy not to fail' from this consumer mis-step.

In the interest of full-disclosure I must mention I have a sell order in for all my Citibank shares, more than doubling money was nice but I can't be involved with this business any longer.


Sean D said...

Congrats on making the moolah on Citi!

What's the impact on a credit report from a person who walks away rather than is foreclosed upon?

Full Disclosure SUCKS!:

I must disclose that I have a Citi card but I use them like a AMEX card rather than a balance carrying card.

Bayne_S said...

I don't know credit difference between walking away and foreclosure since I rent.

Home buying is a leveraged investment and if you are living in a house and can afford to continue making payments it probably makes financial sense to keep paying if under water but if foreclosure is inevitable I would rather see Citi take more of a hit.

Even when you pay off Citi each month they collect 1.5% fees off amount of purchase and I have a complete FAWK Citi mind set at moment.

Alan aka RecessRampage said...

"Even when you pay off Citi each month they collect 1.5% fees off amount of purchase and I have a complete FAWK Citi mind set at moment."

Which is why credit card companies offer rewards. Citi sucks, come sign up for Cap 1. :) But honestly, you should shop around since there are awesome deals out there. If you have awesome credit score, you should check out BofA or Wells Fargo.

I currently have a credit card from BOA (got same offer from WF but theirs came in later than BOA) of 0% on purchases until Oct 2010 as long as I pay minimum balances. I use CC for everything and now, instead of paying balances of each month, it goes straight to savings. Free money.

PS, at least you read the opt out notice on change in terms. Nothing like customers who throw them away and then complain that cc companies all of a sudden changes terms without notifying them. To them, I say read your sh*t and be responsible. Don't blame the companies.