59.9 per cent APR Credit Card No Longer Available

By Beverly Blair Harzog

First PREMIER has pulled its infamous 59.9 per cent APR MasterCard credit card from the market. The card, which was dubbed America’s worst credit card by Consumer Reports, has been replaced with the First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card.

After facing an avalanche of bad publicity due to the sky-high interest rate, it would be easy speculate that public demand brought down the card. But this CNNMoney.com story reports that a First Premier spokeswoman said that the card was so popular the bank had reached its issuing limit for the month.

The new First PREMIER® Bank Secured Credit Card has a 19.99 per cent (V) APR. Is this a reasonable APR? While it’s not rare to see a secured card with such a high rate, there are many secured credit cards on the market with APRs less than 10 per cent.

There’s also a $50 annual fee and several other fees, including a 25 per cent charge for increasing your credit limit and an $11 fee for an “expedited payment” that requires the assistance of a live representative. I got all this information from the Fees, Rates, Costs, and Limitations document on their website. Reading the fine print wasn’t easy due to the lined, grey background.

First Premier has another secured card, the Centennial® Secured Credit Card. It also has a 19.9 per cent (V) APR and assorted fees. But at least the terms and conditions have an easy-to-read, plain white background.

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