25 February 2015

Express Train to Hell

For those out in the audience who question the assertion that the "middle class" is being killed, then the tale of American Express should seal the deal. Amex got tossed out of Costco (how downscale for an upscale card, in the first place?), and recently got told it couldn't coerce merchants into taking its (overpriced, to the merchants) card. Lose revenue one place, take it another. So, they have: raising the rate on those who use the card as a credit card. It hasn't been revealed, that I've yet seen, which holders get to pay more, but the guess would be the lowest rung. Note that the Amex card was initially, and for many decades, a charge card, wherein one paid up in toto when the bill came in the mail. Kind of a debit card, once removed.
AmEx told more than a million customers this month that their annual rates will climb an average of 2.5 percentage points to at least 12.99 percent, following a review last year, said people briefed on the move. The firm sent letters saying it's making adjustments after finding their rates were below those for rival cards held by borrowers "with similar credit profiles," according to a copy obtained by Bloomberg News.

Once again we see the conundrum of the high class financial sector: in order for that teeny, tiny bunch of folks to get more out of the economy (as the 1% accumulate evermore), it's necessary to kill off increasing numbers of the hoi polloi, no one of which has enough moolah to move the 1%'s needle. The locusts, having ravaged the crops, scurry around looking for the odd seed still on the ground. Soon enough, the 1% of the 1% will begin to cannibalize that 99% of the 1%. Would Darwin be proud of his "theory"? Which theory most of the Tea Bagger 1% deny, of course.

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