RUMOR: Chase to Remove 5x Earning Categories on Ink Cards

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I’ve seen this a couple of places, and I do not have first-hand information about the veracity of the information. Doctor of Credit has the best summary of the rumor that is going around:

A good source indicates that Chase has imminent plans of changing the 5x category on the Chase INK line cards to earn just 3x.

This change will not affect existing cardholders. Only new card applicants.

The new 3x category has been in the planning stages for quite some time, and will probably go into effect sometime within the next few months.

The news is not all bad, though. According to the source, all 5x and 2x categories will become 3x.

Therefore it would be wise to consider signing up for an Ink card now, if the rumor is true then you don’t lose out on 5 points per dollar earning at office supply stores and on cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Do you know if you can product change an Ink Bold to the no fee Ink Cash? Wondering if I should do that now if I apply for a Sapphire Preferred or Reserve.

  2. I hadn’t same question about change from Bold to Ink cash. The only drawback I see is that the 5x awards don’t post until the anniversary vs each month like with the Bold. Not sure if that instant post is worth $95 a year.

  3. @MikeD Hi Mike, I did just that last month. I had no problem doing it and saved myself the annual fee. I called in, but I believe you can also send a secure message and they’ll take care of it.

  4. Do you have the scoop on the rumors of the changes coming to the freedom cards? What I’ve heard is they’re combining the freedom and the freedom unlimited cards – what are the odds of them keeping rotating categories, but cutting it down to 3x and keeping 1.5x on everything else?

  5. Bad news long-run for Metabank, et al. An Ink paying 3X will make no sense for MS after liquidation fees are added to gift card charges of 3.5%, $6.95, for $200 Visa gebits purchased at office supply stores. Either they’ll drop the fees or folks won’t buy them anymore. Interesting marketing conundrum — should you price to maximize profit on the grandfathered 5X niche market, or for the all-new, and inevitably growing 3X market?

  6. Some people seem to think the have a right to expect Chase to lose money on manufactured spend for Ink. I hate Chase but they are not in business to cater to MS and churning.
    That being said, there is a lot of adverse selection on ordinary spend categories . We all use the card that gives the best rewards for the category.

    I think I’ll complain to FTC and Justice about collusion on category bonuses. Uh, yeah….. That complaint will go right in the trash.

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