Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Brakes on Customers' Credit Limits

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Brakes on Customers' Credit Limits

Article excerpt

BARCLAYCARD has cut the credit limits of half a million customers to reduce the number of people defaulting on their debts.

The credit card provider, which employs about 600 people at Teesdale, Thornaby, has also tightened its criteria for new customers and is monitoring existing cardholders.

The group said the strategy, which it began last year, aimed to cut the level of bad debt it incurred.

Barclaycard said it was looking at customers on a case by case basis and is using information available to it from other lenders under new industry data-sharing initiatives.

In some cases, it said it was leaving people's credit limits unchanged, but reducing the level of cash advances they could get with their card, as there is evidence to suggest that people who use their credit card to get cash are more likely to be struggling with debt.

The group said it is also using a so-called "low and grow" approach to some new customers, under which it gives them a low initial credit limit, but increases it when they show they can manage the debt. …

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