News and notes from around the interweb:
- US Customs Wants Indians To Stop Carrying Cow Dung in Their Luggage (HT: @crucker)
- Impossible to parody: ‘serious’ people think the TSA should be put in charge of pipeline security
- Through end of 2021, Air Canada Aeroplan members with Canadian co-brand cards (TD, CIBC, Amex) can earn cash rebates for ticket purchases when buying tickets on the airline with those cards – Visa Infinite and Amex cards $25 credit per booking (up to 5 times) and Visa Infinite Privilege and Amex Reserve cards $50 credit per booking (up to 5 times).
Sadly the new U.S. Aeroplan card from Chase is not yet available.
- The man the Department of Homeland Security put on the ‘no fly list’ for refusing to become an FBI informant, who was blocked from returning home to the U.S., has been taken off the list. The federal government didn’t want to defend this in court, so they’ve mooted the man’s lawsuit. They simply said he “no longer satisfied the criteria for placement on the no-fly list” so he can no longer challenge being on it.
- Many Americans can now claim a $50 per month temporary discount on home internet service as part of ’emergency’ Covid-relief legislation. The benefit lasts until the $3 billion allocated runs out or six months after the government declares covid-19 no longer a crisis. And more people qualify than you’d possibly imagine, but the fastest speed plans don’t qualify.
- Large banks will start issuing credit cards to people without credit scores including Chase, Wells Fargo and US Bank. This is a confluence of regulators wanting broader access to credit, and issuers looking for new cardmembers anywhere they can (Chase is even going to launch an Instagram credit card). 53 million US adults do not have scores. (WSJ)
JPMorgan Chase & Co., Wells Fargo & Co., U.S. Bancorp and others will factor in information from applicants’ checking or savings accounts at other financial institutions to increase their chances of being approved for credit cards, according to people familiar with the matter. The pilot program is expected to launch this year.
It is aimed at individuals who don’t have credit scores but who are financially responsible. The banks would consider applicants’ account balances over time and their overdraft histories, the people said.
The effort, if successful, would mark a significant change in the underwriting tactics of big banks, which for decades have enshrined credit scores and credit reports as the main tools to determine who gets a loan. They generally reflect a person’s borrowing history in the U.S., including whether they pay their loans on time. Those who pay only with cash or debit cards, or who are new to the U.S., often don’t have credit scores.