All Articles Tagged "american express"
American Express is giving us more ways to shop, because that’s exactly what we need.
The financial service company has partnered with Twitter to introduce “Amex Sync,” which will let cardholders sync their accounts with Twitter in order to buy things using special hashtags. Customers already had the ability to learn about new discounts via Twitter. But this takes the social media integration to another level to include the ability to actually purchase goods. A statement from American Express (quoted in Business Insider) says that, starting today, users can buy a $25 Amex gift card for just $15 “by tweeting #BuyAmexGiftCard25.”
Once you activate your account, you’ll start interacting directly with the @AmexSync handle. This, of course, adds to the perks of having an Amex card. For Twitter, this could be a moneymaking opportunity. And for shoppers, here’s your chance to buy a little something without clicking away from your Twitter timeline.
After the jump, we’ve got a short clip with the details. If this proves successful for Amex, certainly other card companies will follow suit. Will you be shopping on Twitter any time soon?
Guess It Really Is Hard Out Here For A Pimp: American Express Sues Terrence Howard For Unpaid Credit Card Bill
Earlier this month, we reported that things were looking up for actor Terrence Howard since he and his ex-wife had finally reached a settlement, putting an end to their ugly divorce battle. Unfortunately, there seems to be no rest for the weary as Terrence will probably find himself in yet another courtroom in the coming months. According to Global Grind, American Express is completely fed up with the Red Tails actor’s reluctance to pay his credit card debt and is slapping him with a lawsuit in an effort to recover the unpaid money. The financial service corporation is also requesting that an additional ten percent be paid on top of the money owed.
How much money does a person have to owe before American Express gets fed up enough to drag them to court, you ask? Legal documents, which were filed back in November in the Los Angeles Superior Court revealed that the Hustle & Flow actor owes the company $33,474.79. It is also being reported that AMEX is not only filing claims against Terrence as an individual, but also against his company, Al Chemist Productions, Inc.
So far, the actor’s legal team has not filed any court documents in response to the claims made by American Express. Hopefully Terrence has the money to pay his bill and mistakenly forgot to send out his payment, although he wouldn’t be the first celebrity who attempted to completely bail on debts owed. The timeframe in which Terrence was given to repay his debt was not revealed; however, one would think that taking Terrence to court was probably AMEX’s last resort in getting him to pay his bill, since I highly doubt the company wants to be making headlines for suing a famous client.
What do you think of AMEX’s decision to sue Terrence?
As the holidays approach, some consumers will receive refunds and restitution from credit card companies, a penalty for misleading consumers with deceptive credit card practices.
Earlier this year, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a consumer finance watchdog organization that was launched in 2011 in the wake of the economic meltdown, ordered American Express, Discover, and Capital One to payout more than $425 million in refunds.
“We think this is definitely a case of enforcement getting better,” Bill Hardekopf, CEO of credit card comparison site LowCards.com, told the Sacramento Bee. He said the CFPB “is establishing the fact that they mean business. Their ‘calling’ is to look after consumers and they are trying to show that they will do just that.”
Of the three credit card companies, American Express subsidiaries were ordered to pay $85 million to around 250,000 cardholders for a variety of illegal practices going all the way back to 2003. Capital One is sending $140 million to two million customers who purchased Capital One financial products after August 2010 and who may have been deceived or didn’t understand the products or items they were buying.
Lastly, Discover will pay $200 million for deceptive telemarketing tactics, including implying that certain paid features were free benefits and not explaining various fees and payments. More than 3.5 million customers will receive funds.
Bank of America, not part of the $425 million CPFB crackdown, is also refunding customers after some deceptive debit card practices that caused millions of customers to receive unfair overdraft fees. Bank of America is refunding $410 million to customers.
So keep an eye on your credit card accounts and mailboxes in the coming weeks if you think you are eligible for these refunds. You can learn more online.
With the nation’s sentiment turning somewhat sour about Black Friday (many complained that store openings on Thanksgiving night intruded on the family gatherings for both shoppers and workers) the time was right this year for Small Business Saturday. Add to that the focus on small businesses — supporting them was a big talking point during the presidential election — and you have buzz for the day unlike any that’s likely been experienced in the past.
New York’s Mayor Bloomberg announced today that a matching grant program worth $5.5 million will be available for small businesses impacted by Hurricane Sandy. A total of more than $45 million in loans and other financial assistance will also help.
President Barack Obama and the rest of the White House has been crowing about Small Business Saturday on Twitter today. The President and the First Daughters Sasha and Malia were out shopping today at a local Arlington bookstore (he bought 15 children’s books, according to Reuters) to support the day.
And American Express — which founded Small Business Saturday in 2010 — and Small Business Administration Administrator Karen Mills were on the Today show yesterday talking up the opportunity to shop at local businesses. (Video below.)
Widely reported numbers say that small businesses created two out of three jobs in this country over the past 20 years. American Express founded the day three years ago and says more than 100 million people came out last year.
For black businesses, Small Business Saturday could be just the thing to jump start businesses. Pointing out the many difficulty that black retailers have — from the troubles with financing, lack of a strong network, or old-fashioned racism — The Huffington Post’s Jessica Cumberbatch Anderson talks with entrepreneurs who are trying to capitalize on the special day and all of the digital avenues available to small business owners nowadays.
“It drives traffic both to our Internet business and to our brick-and-mortar business,” Jamyla Bennu, owner of Baltimore’s Oyin Handmade, told the website.
The entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in the black community (“the number of black-owned businesses in the U.S. increasing by 60.5 percent between 2002 and 2007,” HuffPo quotes the Census Bureau’s latest Survey of Business Owners), but the means to get businesses off the ground or stay afloat aren’t always there.
The Grio provides a list of small black-owned businesses that you can try out for Small Business Saturday and beyond. Did you shop at a black-owned business today?
American Express and Wal-Mart have partnered to create Bluebird, a prepaid card that, the AP says, “acts like a checking account but without the fees that have increasingly frustrated shoppers.” Those fees include overdraft charges and monthly fees.
In addition, the card will have some of the features and benefits that one would find with one of today’s digital accounts, like the ability to deposit a check into your account using a photo of the check and direct deposit capabilities. Banking can be done at the Wal-Mart checkout, which Amex’s group president of Enterprise Growth, Dan Schulman, called the “moral equivalent of a bank branch at retail.”
According to a Citi Research analyst, only about 15 percent of Walmart purchases are paid with a credit card, a small portion of the many people shopping at the “world’s largest retailer.” Moreover, about eight percent of Americans (17 million people) don’t have a bank account, with another 18 percent (43 million people) classified as “under-banked.” The FDIC recently found that more than one-fifth of blacks don’t have a bank account. With its emphasis on low and no fees, Bluebird provides an alternative for those people who may otherwise be paying a fortune for alternative financial services like payday loans.
Even a checking account comes with a cost. A press statement about Bluebird includes this startling stat: a basic checking account costs customers, on average, $259. (The Huffington Post puts it at $144.) Overdraft fees can take costs into the hundreds or thousands. Bluebird doesn’t offer overdraft.
For American Express, this is a turn towards a new market of less affluent customers. By targeting this new consumer, some suspect that the two companies are trying to take on big banks. But HuffPo points out that those customers who have turned away from banks have gone to credit unions. And people who bank with traditional banking institutions are unlikely to leave them for this sort of an option. More than anything, it will likely act as a gateway for many to reliable financial services.
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(New York Times) — American Express recently announced a new service that gives shoppers 180 days to return eligible purchased goods. It also covers certain return shipping and restocking fees. The company isn’t doing this out of the goodness of its heart, of course. It will cost you $49.99 a year, and shoppers with any type of charge, credit or debit card (not just American Express) can sign up. The offering is called Premium Return Protection. The service, an expanded and enhanced version of what the card company previously offered on select cards, seems to be a good value for power shoppers; people who hate dressing rooms and stores in general, and prefer to shop online; and people who often suffer from buyer’s regret. The new offering also comes as many retailers have tightened their own return policies.
(USA Today) — Thanksgiving weekend is traditionally the kickoff of the holiday gift buying season, and it’s vitally important to retailers. Most Americans, of course, head off to giant stores. But this year, American Express has launched an initiative encouraging Americans to spend some of their holiday dollars in small, local stores. They’ve declared the Saturday after Thanksgiving “Small Business Saturday.” Even though this originates as a corporate initiative, “Small Business Saturday” is a great idea. By choosing a day in the most-important shopping weekend and giving it a specific name — Small Business Saturday — American Express is hoping this will catch on the same way as Black Friday for giant sales and Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, for sales online.
(Crain’s) — First, big-box retailers hyped up Black Friday. Then online sellers touted Cyber Monday. Now the biggest holiday shopping weekend of the year looks to get even crazier, as the first “Small Business Saturday” will take place here on Nov. 27. New York City is the first city in the country to endorse the nationwide initiative, launched Monday at City Hall by Mayor Michael Bloomberg and American Express Chief Executive Kenneth Chenault. The objective is to get consumers shopping at their locally owned, independent businesses, instead of overlooking community stores, the weekend after Thanksgiving.
(CNN Money) – American Express is the credit card issuer of choice for the fourth year in a row, a report released Thursday showed. Based on a 1,000-point scale, AmEx received a customer satisfaction rating of 769, which was 55 points higher than the industry average, according to a survey conducted in March and April by information services provider J.D. Power and Associates.