The new Wells Fargo Prime Rate Credit Card offers a panacea to shady interest rate hikes, a former specialty of the credit card industry. The premise of the card is that its rates never go higher than the Prime Rate, a rate used and referenced by banks.
Today’s WSJ prime rate is an indulgent 3.25%. Makes you want to spend, doesn’t it?
The catch is, of course, in the fine print:
The Prime Rate APR does not apply to cash advances. If a minimum monthly payment is not received for two consecutive billing periods or the new balance shown on your billing statement exceeds your account’s credit limit for two consecutive billing periods, the Default Rate, as described in your Customer Agreement and Disclosure Statement, may apply.
The card only works for people who use their credit responsibly in the first place. People who tend to forgo payments will find themselves in the very situation they’re trying to avoid–a jacked-up “default rate.”
Nonetheless, this is the best news to come out of the credit crunch in some time. The Prime Rate card is a sweet deal for anyone who doesn’t pay off their entire bill monthly, and needs a card to carry debt. I hope other banks follow suite.