Many credit card companies are now adding more fees to consumers as a way to make up for revenue lost to greater regulation from the federal government, but the majority of those charges are likely being paid by consumers who are getting a credit card for the first time, according to a report from Forbes. Some studies have found that new cardholders pay about $15 a month in fees on average, but that amount decreases by 75 percent over the next four years.
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A number of lenders are now bringing back fees such as those for monthly account maintenance or even activation, the report said. Most have altered the terms of agreements to include high penalties for late payments, which are more likely to be made by consumers with less financial experience.
Credit card lenders are likely to fall under even greater regulatory control in the coming months as the federal government’s new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will gain regulatory power this summer. It will first concentrate on ensuring that predatory practices outlawed by the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act are not being circumvented by lenders.