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Facing the credit card music

February 23, 2010 - Mike Maneval

Disclosure measures under the new law will require credit card companies to inform cardholders how long paying off credit would take were one to pay the minimum payments, and how much the cardholder would have to pay monthly to eliminate the debt within three months. "Jaws will drop," publisher David Robertson of the Nilson Report told the Huffington Post.

The credit card bill was signed by President Barack Obama in May of 2009. Credit card companies have spent the lag creating new fees and lifting interest rates - as a Bank of America employee detailed on Tuesday's Daily Show, even applying the interest rates to the fees.

The availability of credit also been diminished in the long wake leading up to the law becoming effective next week. The Huffington Post reports credit lines have dried up in the parts of the country hit hardest by the collapse in housing values and unemployment, particularly Florida and California. Between this and other tactics like reducing outreach to potential cardholders, eliminating a total of about $1 trillion in credit in the past year, according to a consulting firm.


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