some merchants consider AMEX card holders to be more business-friendly or savvy or more credit worthy
obviously this is the result of a marketing gimmick or a past version of american express, but maybe I don't have the complete picture
In short American Express is considered a luxury brand. They built there business catering to the business savvy, wealthy individuals. Public perception has been for so long that American Express = well off, so that's just the way it is perceived and its perpetuated to this day. Some other lenders are attempting to take this "title" from AMEX but at the moment AMEX still has that lineage.
Side note there are some reports showing American Express cards members do spend more than "by giving you the ability to accept cards that are held by nearly 50 million US customers who spend an average of 43% more with American Express Cards than with other cards*
Oh sure, the good people at Amex like affluent card holders, but they appreciate less than risky ones as well.
If it's an option to get 50% more on the perk scale by paying a mere 10% extra, I'm in. That's one way of looking at Amex.
When that's said, many with a FICO in the 600s know more about credit than some in the 800s. Oddly enough, you can be less knowledgeable and less risky at the same time!
It is all about marketing and their early years. Whenever I think of "Gold" or "Platinum," I think of Amex. I think most lenders will give them a run for their money now. However back in the day, they were the best and the reputation has stuck
There's really not much to explain other than what was mentioned in the first reply. AmEx membership is a bit more diverse these days. Consider that they've branched out with products like Zync, prepaid, etc.
To go back to perception, it's like any other perception that generalizes about a large group of diverse people. You might as well ask us to explain the various stereotypes out there (not just credit-related). There's usually some seed of truth but the generalization does not apply in all cases so it's of dubious usefulness to rely solely on it versus assessing each individual instance.
They do seem to be more selective than some other lenders. They're not BK friendly and they seem to be inquiry sensitive. Per the link above the numbers do make their members look good as a group but that is AmEx marketing material for merchants so of course it's going to try to make AmEx acceptance look beneficial to the merchants.
It is interesting that the only CC that Costco takes is Amex
DW just got an invitation to apply for a green charge card, I told her to trash it because her report has lots of baddies and a couple collections but 100% on time payment history. Credit karma has her at 601 fyi, she applied anyway and was instantly approved... Dumbfounded I thought AMEX was very strict and couldn't believe she was approved. meh end rant now
If her baddies are old and not major derogs ie bks, judgments they can be receptive. Also CK scores are FAKOS.
Yes, ck is a FAKO and I have not checked her FICO's yet as we are tackling some collection letters that she is getting currently. Man did I, "mr always on the credit forums", that told her to trash the offer look stupid when she flipped the computer around to show me an approval screen :/ Doh! Haha I am glad she didnt listen to me.