Most consumers who have gone shopping at major retailers in recent months have probably noticed that more are offering store-branded credit cards – usually with the promise of a moderate discount on the cost of their purchase that day. And those efforts will likely expand in the coming months.
One reason for this is that Citi will soon rename its private-label credit card business and focus on expanding its offerings not only with current partners, but new ones as well, according to the lender. The new company, known as Citi Retail Services instead of the current name (Retail Partner Cards) will also aggressively work to expand available loyalty rewards programs for consumers.
The company also recently added Ford Motor Company to its list of card partners, meaning it will provide financing for parts and service at 3,000 dealerships nationwide, the report said. Currently, Citi has issued close to 90 million accounts through its retail card business.
Retailer cards are generally frowned upon by experts, however, because they carry higher interest rates than regular accounts, which can lead consumers to have more credit card debt than they are comfortable with and make it harder to get out of debt if they fall behind.