The financial crisis has forced most cardholders to tighten up their belts and slow down spending. As a result, major banks and card companies suffer from a record loss in revenues. In order to fight against the losses, issuers consider other earning opportunities, the newest one coming from the premium credit card segment. Bankers acknowledge that the only profitable market would be the premium segment customers that can afford paying annual fees, higher interest rates and who usually travel more and spend more on the annual basis.
This acknowledgement has prompted banks and issuing companies to focus on premium credit cardholders, and they can expect a greater number of new offers available to them soon. In fact, during the past three to four months, 80% of new cards issued were premium accounts and most of them had annual fees.
With an increased number of premium cards in the market, banks expect to earn revenues from two main avenues. The first one is the number of transactions customers make. With credit spending down, revenues fall, too. However, it is expected that premium credit consumers will keep their spending activity, thus helping banks hold on. The other avenue is revolving credit. Banks make great revenues from credit card APRs and a premium cardholder is more likely to be able to pay the interest than an average consumer.
Accordingly, more and more bankers agree that capitalizing on the premium segment of the market is the only way to bring down losses. They are also aware that good and excellent credit customers are more grounded in credit and interest rates and are more responsible paying debt. So, such customers are not only more profitable but also safer in terms of their financial obligations.
Though premium consumers may soon see the aggressive marketing campaign, the selection process does exist, and it is not easy and quick. More thoroughly than before, banks look at many factors to determine the applicant’s eligibility. They consider your annual salary, your employment experience, education level and, of course, your credit bureau history. The final approval decision is not made until the issuing bank makes sure that the applicant is really profitable and low risk.
Approved applicants enjoy the same or increased benefits of premium credit. They may still get access to great travel rewards and lots of financial opportunities. Though there is an annual fee on many premium cards, their interest rates are still rather competitive in comparison with fair or limited card offers.