White House Targets Credit Card Chicanery

Issuers coming under pressure to halt unfair, misleading practices
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 21, 2009 5:58 AM CDT
Congress and the White House are taking steps to crack down on what they say are unfair and misleading practices by credit card issuers.   (Shutterstock)
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(Newser) – The Obama administration is throwing its weight behind congressional efforts to crack down on credit card companies, the Wall Street Journal reports. Lawmakers are pushing legislation to ban practices like arbitrarily raising interest rates on existing balances and the president is expected to take a hard line on the issue in a meeting with execs from credit card companies this week.

Obama plans to discuss "credit-card abuses" and "the way people have been deceived into paying extraordinarily high rates," said adviser Larry Summers. The issuers are likely to face pressure to adopt new fair-practice regulations even before they become law in July 2010, although the companies argue this would force them to raise their rates and cut back on lending.