Even as the Federal Reserve has announced that it will keep short-term interest rates at a near zero percentage for an unspecified ?extended period? and that the prime rate is at 3.25%, the lowest point in decades, most consumers are still paying a higher interest rate on their credit cards than they have in years.
LowCards Complete Credit Card Index tracks the APR on the 1000+ credit cards in the United States and last week the average advertised APR was 13.55%. Prior to the CARD act, which was first signed into law on May 21, 2009 (it actually took effect on February 22, 2010) the average advertised APR was 11.64%.
Nearly every one of the credit card issuers have raised rates in response to the CARD act in an attempt to maintain their revenues in the face of new regulations that now prevent the punitive credit card practices of the past.
If the prime rate goes up as it is expected to do towards the end of 2010, virtually every cardholder can expect an increase in their rate. For some ideas on what you can do to protect yourself check out Protecting Yourself Against Further APR Increases.