Store card provider’s interest rates under scrutiny

The government plans to halt excessive interest rates on credit cards and prevent unfair bank charges according to an announcement today from the Lib-Con coalition.

The coalition stated that it will create measures that will stop banks from placing unfair bank charges on accounts including overdraft penalties and other common financial transactions.

Other new powers include the ability for regulators to ban what they define as high interest rates from being accessed on store and credit cards.

After taking out a store card consumers will have a seven day period while credit card companies will be forced to offer customers better information, so that consumers can see what the best deal is for them in an easier format.

Also on the table is better protection for those that are already in debt against bailiffs that use aggressive tactics and so that repossession is always the last tactic used.  The focus is also on making energy companies offer more comprehensive information about how customers can reduce their average energy consumption and switch to a cheaper tariff.

Prime Minister David Cameron stated that he wants to introduce greater transparency in order to create responsible consumer behaviour and responsible corporate behaviour.  Cameron also said that the government wants to take action so that vulnerable consumers are protected and competition is fairly increased across the economy.

Consumer groups such as Consumer Focus welcomed the news with chief executive of the group Mike O’Connor stating that banking customers needs should be the focus of the banking reform initiated by the Government due to the fact that there are a wide variety of issues facing the public such as poor savings rates, unfair charges, and a lack of competition.

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