Minimums on the Rise

Physician's Money Digest, February 2006, Volume 13, Issue 2

If paying the minimum balance onyour credit card bill was simply a wayof life for you, life is about to get harder.In the past, credit card companieswere only obligated to request 2% of acustomer's total credit card balance tosuffice as a minimum monthly payment.As was often the case, that 2%only covered the interest on the balanceand potentially other fees, leavingthe customer with a pile of debt thatcould take a lifetime to pay off. Now,federal regulators, in an attempt to fixthe ever-growing problem of debtamong consumers, are requiring that aminimum monthly payment coversinterest, transaction fees, and 1% ofthe principal amount. This shift in policycould send some customers' monthly payments soaring.