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Credit Card Rewards Down Under

posted by Adam Levitin

The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia) was kind enough to feature my article about the social costs of credit card merchant restraints. (Sorry for the shameless self-plug...)

It's worth noting that when the Reserve Bank of Australia forced credit card networks to lower interchange rates and allow merchants to surcharge, the card networks had to cut back on their rewards programs (which are funded from merchant fees). That reduces the incentive to use cards simply for transacting, which means that fewer Australians are likely to end up paying interest and fees because of overestimating the likelihood that they'll make their card payments on time (because of everything from carelessness to changed financial circumstances).

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