The Financial Decoder Jill Schlesinger back on the show today. Yeah, yeah, it's not technology, but we do mention online banking, so we guess that counts. Anyway, we talk about how credit card companies are like drug dealers, and how to break the habit.
Congress recently passed legislation that would prevent some of the bad practices that credit card companies engage in, but Jill reveals to us that for the most part it won't prevent much. Credit card companies will just have to tell you how they are screwing you. Be prepared for your credit cards to have annual fees and higher rates in the interim.
After the break, Jill warns us to stay away from the credit consolidation, negotiation or settlement companies. According to her, you don't have to pay some lawyer to do what you can do already, by calling the credit card companies yourself or writing them a letter. If you are in the endless debt circle, ask them for a break on the interest rate for a year or two. Keep in mind that the companies want something instead of nothing.
Finally, we talk about how the experiences of growing up in Jewish and Chinese households share so much in common. Namely, our love of mahjong. So much so that we all flip out when we see an automated mahjong shuffling table! Send in your feedback as usual to the404 [at] cnet [dot] com. Jill and Wilson might make a weekly date of their financial and economic talk. Let us know if that might interest you. Look out for Jill's recommendations for credit cards and checking accounts later.
UPDATE: Check out Jill's blog post on MoneyWatch about credit card companies. Plus she gives us a little love.
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