07-15-2011 01:38 PM - edited 07-15-2011 02:02 PM
I also just got the "well, if you give me a ballpark figure" come-on. Here's what happened. I noticed that Macy's wasn't reporting my CL to the bureaus. I checked the forums here. This was supposedly a "glitch" some people experienced in 2007, 2008 or so. I called thinking I'd fallen into the "glitch" category. First operator I spoke with commented that my name was unusual (it really isn't *that* odd or uncommon), then explained that due to "a change in internal business practices" on 3/30, Macy's no longer *had* specific CLs, but that she could offer to check a specific dollar amount if I wanted. I didn't want, as I have some other things going on with my credit report at the moment, and so I asked for clarification: what was the previous practice, why did she want this info, was she going to do a hard pull every time I went to the register, etc. Upshot: yes, based on the new system. I asked for a supervisor.
Here's the supervisor's explanation:
--"It's not like a typical credit card. It's like a flexible spending account." (Um....huh?)
--"We can basically see how much we are able to accommodate your purchase for at the time of sale." (And that would be...how?)
--"At the point of sale, if it needs to refer in, depending on how much we can do based on your payment history and external credit as well." (WHAT?!...!!!)
--"We don't pull (your credit report) every time, just every three months or so." (Are they really interested in ditching that many small accounts?...)
--"Before, we could issue guidelines." (And you can't now because...?)
I saw higher up in the thread that someone referenced GEMB. Did GEMB take over Macy's card service? I see DSNB is the company. If so, given how they screwed me (and others) on IKEA,
I wonder whether this isn't a sign of a larger pattern: for example, say a credit card bank decided it wants to upgrade its portfolio and is now courting other businesses with independent card services to take on its prime accounts. Or say a credit card bank has had to eat too many defaults and is now trying to cover its losses. We've seen this before, right?... The second consumers got a little legal protection, the predators began coming up with all kinds of weird workarounds, policy exceptions, etc.
Maybe the feds should look into this.
P.S. Upon further research, I think this is how CC companies/banks are trying to get around the universal default ban. It creates a de facto universal default if every CC company does it, or if one company that issues multiple cards on behalf of multiple retailers does it. In other words, the credit card issuers are calling in their chips. What does THAT say about the liquidity of these lenders and (by extension) the economy????????????
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