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FICO Introduces New Anti-Fraud Solution

FICO Introduces New Anti-Fraud SolutionMany people have experienced the frustration of having their credit card hacked. You know the drill: you get a call, or a text, alerting you to possible fraudulent activity on your account. Or maybe you log into your account online and see that the balance isn’t what you expected, giving you quite a shock.

Even if the fraud is stopped immediately and the money is refunded to you – as it usually is, because of zero-liability policies that most credit cards offer their customers – there’s still the hassle of having your card canceled and waiting for a new one to be issued, changing your account information with any merchants with whom you’d set up automatic payments, and staying on the alert for any other strange activity that could signal an ongoing issue.

A new product from FICO, called the FICO Card Compromise Manager, is designed to proactively det ...

Small Business Optimism Up, According to American Express OPEN Survey

1971The 2017 American Express OPEN Small Business Monitor has good news: nearly three-fourths of small business owners (72%) think their business prospects are looking up, and feel the economy will be favorable over the next six months.

This is a jump over last year, when only 64% had an optimistic outlook, and 2015, when 67% were feeling good about the economy and their business growth potential. Growing their businesses is the number one goal for those surveyed, for the first time in six years of the survey.

Most small business owners are well positioned to look toward expansion; one in five said that their businesses are strong, growing, and performing well. Only 34% are worried about cash flow, and 82% are confident they’ll be able to get their hands on the capital they need to meet their growth goals.

Social media takes the lead

As for their growth strategies, more businesses are focusing on social media this year; 65% will make it a priority, compared with 57% in 2016. More than half of those su ...

Sheetz Introduces New and Improved Loyalty Card Program

1966If you have a Sheetz convenience store near you, you’ll want to make sure you’re signed up for its new loyalty card program, MySheetz Card.

Family-owned Sheetz is one of America’s fastest growing convenience store chains, and their new loyalty card program gives consumers points for virtually every purchase they make in the store. Frequent customers will be able to obtain official Sheetz Freakz status. Registering their card online will get access to special birthday rewards, surprise offers, and freebies.

Joe Sheetz, CEO of Sheetz, Inc, explained that the store is responding to customers’ demands. “The number one request from our customers has been to earn rewards on all of their purchases,” said Sheetz. “We heard them and responded with bigger, better, and more rewards.”

Fan, friend, or freak

Cardholders will earn five points for every dollar they spend at Sheetz. They will start out as a Sheetz “Fan” and work their way to becoming a “Friend” and finally a “Freak” when ...

Study Shows Credit Card Debt Affects Kids Too

1962Being in credit card debt is stressful. And the last thing parents want to think about is how their financial stress might be affecting their children.

For financially strapped families, having one more thing to worry and feel guilty about is a terrible feeling. But a new study from T. Rowe Price might actually be empowering to parents. They surveyed a thousand parents of kids ages 8 to 14 and found that while the parents’ financial habits did affect their kids – kids tended to pick up their parents bad money habits – parents can counteract any negative modeling by simply talking to their kids about money.

Parents who openly discussed money matters with their children were more likely to raise kids with healthy attitudes toward money. For example, kids whose parents had been through bankruptcy, and who were aware of it, were more than twice as likely to say they were smart, or even extremely smart, about money compared with their peers whose parents’ bankruptcy had been kept secret from them. Eig ...

Citi And Chase Named Best Balance Transfer Credit Cards

1957For those looking for a great balance transfer credit card, the top two to consider might be a Citi Diamond Preferred card and or a Chase Slate card. Those were the top two cards named as the best in the industry recently, with a tie putting them both as best in class. The third-place winner was the BankAmericard, a card that isn’t as widely known, but which still offers good value.

The Chase Slate card is a rarity these days, because it lets consumers transfer a balance with no balance transfer fee, as long as they do it within 60 days, or about two months, of opening their account. It then gives folks 15 months to make payments on their cards without incurring any interest fees whatsoever.

Citi Diamond does charge a balance transfer fee, but at 3% or $5, whichever is higher, it isn’t too steep. And their no-interest period is longer, lasting 21 months. The Bank Americard offers an 18-month 0% APR promotion, with a lower ongoing interest rate than many other cards offer, after the zero-interest period ...

New Study Shows Americans’ Debt Level Climbing While Savings Dwindle

1593Credit card debt in America continues to climb, according to a new study. Meanwhile, savings accounts are emptying out or sitting idle, in a trend that has finance experts concerned.

Fifty-two percent of Americans say they still have more money in their savings accounts than they have in credit card debt. That percentage is unchanged from 2016. But the number of Americans with more credit card debt than savings is climbing, rising two percentage points from last year to this year. Only one in six Americans say they don’t have either credit card debt or emergency savings – a worrying statistic, considering those people could very easily fall into debt with just one unplanned expense.

Savings and debt: the generational divide

Older folks – Baby Boomers and their parents, the so-called Silent Generation – were more likely to have substantial savings and less credit card debt. Millennials and Generation Xers were most likely to have more debt than emergency savings overall, but perhaps surprisingly, ...

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