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New Credit CARD Act topic of audio conference

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MADISON, Wis. (6/2/09)--The Credit Union National Association (CUNA) has scheduled an audio conference for June 18 on requirements of the new Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009. The CARD Act, approved by the Senate two weeks ago, aims to prevent lenders from making arbitrary changes to interest rates and terms associated with a credit card that holds an existing balance. During the conference--which starts at 1 p.m. CDT--Jeff Bloch, CUNA senior assistant general counsel and Mike McLain, CUNA assistant general counsel and senior compliance counsel, will provide an overview of the CARD Act requirements. Mike Long, chief credit officer at UW CU, Madison, Wis., and chair of the CUNA Lending Council Regulatory Committee, will talk about the rules’ potential impact on credit unions. According to CUNA, conference participants will:
* Examine different elective dates and restrictions on increasing the annual percentage rate; * Identify limits placed on fees that can be charged and procedures that must be followed when changes are made in the interest rate; * Hear a discussion of the other restrictions such as due dates, late payment fees, minimum payment disclosures and gift cards; * Explore new restrictions on cards offered to students; and * Get a practical look at implementing new rules from a credit union practitioner.
To register for the conference, use the link.

Credit card penetration flat says broker

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PORTLAND, Ore. (6/2/09)--The growth rate for credit card portfolios has slowed, and credit card penetration remains flat, according to a credit union credit card portfolio advisory and brokerage firm. Card penetration was 18% in the first quarter of this year, according to AssetExchange. Outstanding portfolio balances grew 5.9% between March 2008 and March 2009 to $31 billion, down from 16% growth in the first quarter of 2008. Card accounts grew 2.4% during the same period to 12.2 million, down from 21% growth during the first quarter of 2008, the firm said. Two large card portfolios also were sold in the first quarter of this year--Kern Schools FCU, Bakersfield, Calif., at $101 million, and American First, La Habra, Calif., at $53 million. Five other credit unions sold smaller portfolios, bringing total sales to $190 million. AssetExchange’s data was based on National Credit Union Administration call report data for credit card portfolios larger than $1 million.