How does American Express work? Michael writes that Experian doesn’t seem to understand how the company’s credit limits work. His card technically has no limit, and this confuses Experian. They coped with the confusion by showing that instead of having theoretically infinite available credit, he had $0, making his pristine record look pretty bad to potential lenders.
I’ve had accounts with Wells Fargo for over 15 years, and I recently
applied for their Rewards card with a pretty nice pre-qualified deal
(0% APR for 12 months). I’m gainfully employed and my FICO score is
above 700, so I figured they’d just airdrop the card in my
morning after I put in the application.
It turns out they could give a crap about your FICO score or the
credit history it represents. All they looked at was my Experian
report, specifically the debt-to-credit ratio. Now if you’re like me,
you hate debt, and to that end I’ve only ever had an American Express
gold card. So they looked at the current balance on my Amex when I
submitted my application–about $1500–and compared it to my credit
limit, and that’s where things started to go wrong. As an Amex
holder, my limit is infinity. But by Experian’s creative reckoning,