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Congress Takes Aim at Credit Card Lending

(Bob Child - AP)
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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

President Obama is "broadly supportive" of two bills in Congress that would curb abusive practices of credit card companies, according to administration officials. Here are some of the provisions.

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In the House

Carolyn Maloney's (D-N.Y.) Credit Cardholders' Bill of Rights:

-- Prevents card issuers from increasing interest rates on existing balances unless a cardholder is more than 30 days late, a pre-agreed promotional rate expires, the rate adjusts as part of a variable rate or the cardholder fails to comply with a workout agreement.

-- Requires companies to let consumers set their own fixed credit limit.

-- Limits to three the number of over-the-limit fees that companies can charge for the same transaction.

-- Ends "double-cycle" billing, the practice of charging interest on debt consumers have already paid on time.

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