Debit Card Reward Programs Have Been Slashed By Almost One-Third

Photo: Rainforest Action Network

In another sign that they way we bank may be changing forever,  a new study shows that debit reward programs fell by 30 per cent last year.The new  2011 Debit Card Rewards Study shows, however, that a handful of banks that retain the rewards programs have left them unchanged.

Among the remaining rewards systems the study found .5 per cent to be the most common return, which is still a vast improvement over the monthly fees to be implemented by some institutions.

“The Federal Reserve’s new cap on debit interchange fees is leading many debit card issuers to discontinue their rewards programs,” said Greg McBride, CFA, senior financial analyst for Bankrate.com. “On the bright side, disciplined spenders can utilise reward programs as compensation for purchases they’d make anyway.”

More than 70 per cent of the rewards programs have no fees and could return up to $120 cash, 80,000 miles and 50,000 calendar points per year.

Like any other aspect of your personal finance, taking time to look for the best banking opportunities is key — and the rewards are out there.

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