About Credit Card Finance Charges

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Finance charges on credit card bills are just expenses that can be categorized under interest or penalties, but calling up the credit card company to complain may result in these charges being dropped. Learn about finance charges with information from a portfolio manager in this free video on finance.

Part of the Video Series: Credits, Stocks & Pension
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Video Transcript

Have you looked at your credit card statement recently and seen a line item called finance charge? Hi, this is Roger Groh at Groh Asset Management, and today, we're here to talk about what that really means. Well, that's hogwash for expense, and they may classify that as interest that you're paying. They may classify that as a penalty if you've gone over your limit. They may classify that as a penalty that they're assessing on you for not paying your last payment on time. It can be anything. It's just an expense. They love to load them up. Be careful with your credit cards. Some companies, under the contract that you have with them, are able to charge more finance charges than others. It's worth reading the fine print because every penny you pay to them is one less dollar you have to spend at home. What many customers don't do is call the card company and complain. Say, "What is all this stuff?" And they'll review the charges and then ask for the boss. Then ask for another boss. Then ask for another boss, and when you get the top guy saying, "I'm fed up! Remove the..." And sometimes they will actually reduce the charges or remove them completely from your statement. It's worth asking. So I'm Roger Groh. Good luck. Read the fine print, and be very careful with your money.

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