Wednesday, May 27, 2009

No credit card for me

Apparently the credit card Natzi has decided that a certain business card will be no more. I have a credit card for the church - a business account - and yesterday I received a letter stating:
"Your ____ Business Card account is funded by an independent trust which owns the balances you owe on your account and provides funding for new transactions. We expect the trust to stop funding activity on our accounts. The trust also restricts our flexibility to fund activity on your account. Unfortunately, as a result, effective May 30th all _____ Business Credit Card accounts, including your account, will be closed. This means that you will not be able to use your card or account for new transactions... beginning on May 30th.

My first thought was that this was some kind of scam or something. So I dug out an old bill and called my credit card company. But, sure enough, it is for real. And the real bummer is - I received my letter (which was dated 5/22) on May 26; and it's no good in FOUR DAYS! I'm sure I can get by for awhile without a card, and I can only think of one bill that automatically charges to my credit card - which I'm apparently going to have to switch to my personal card, because who has time to get a new card in that amount of time - but can you imagine a big business that has lots of people using these cards, and lots of things billed automatically? This seems really strange. And, I know, someone will say it's just us. But it's not. It is the entire cc company. Weird.

So, anyway, I got this at noon yesterday and spent awhile trying to get to the bottom of it. I finally ended up having Jane bring me an application from her bank for a new card. I mailed it off this morning.

Has anyone else heard of people having their business cards closed recently?

UPDATE: See article here and here.


Jim said...

Nope, but we're not a small business and our business cards are from Amex (and if Amex goes down, there will be other worries in the country besides losing my business card).

I googled a phrase from the first sentence of the letter and found that the company in question with your card had a 20+% default rate in April and a 17% default rate the month before that. Pretty obvious that with 1/5 of all their customers defaulting on their debt they can't stay in business much longer. And the real worry that gives me is since they specialize in cards for small businesses, and since small businesses employ something like 70% of the people in the country, does that mean we're really starting to climb out of the pit of the recession, or much worse is yet to come?

dan horwedel said...

Yes, Advanta is not Amex, but I'm with you... this doesn't sound good.

It won't effect me at all really. We always paid our bill in full every month, and I can get by without a credit card if need be. It just helped with bookkeeping. But I wonder how many small businesses relied on these.