Question about American Express Credit Profile

Old Oct 13, 09, 8:43 am
  #1  
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Question about American Express Credit Profile

I am an American Express Platinum Charge holder. Recently I changed jobs, going from the public sector to the private sector. I was previously making $100,000 per year. Now I am making $85,000 per year. I have updated my employer and income information in my "credit profile" section of the American Express website.

The most I've spent in one month on the card is $3000. I usually spend between $700 and $1300 per month. My scores are excellent, never missed or late with a payment, and always get letters of appreciation in the mail. I have never reverted to the "pay over time" option and always pay my balances in full. Last month, with $3000 in charges, at different times, I made 5 payments. Usually when the balances post, I pay them.

Will this profile update have negative effects on my standing with Amex?

Last edited by Black Tie Affair; Oct 13, 09 at 1:52 pm
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Old Oct 13, 09, 12:04 pm
  #2  
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ANYONE?
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Old Oct 13, 09, 2:26 pm
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Well, first, its only been a few hours since you posted so you need to relax.

Second, you'll get more opinions on credit cards on a site devoted to credit like http://www.creditboards.com than on a travel/points site like flyertalk.

Third, I would never update the profile section of the Amex site. I'd change it back to your former income and keep on keeping on. If they are going whack your lines, they'll likely base the adverse action from negative information on your credit report, or if you miss payment with them. If something triggers a "Financial Review", you'll need to provide tax return information if you want to keep your account.

Last edited by skofarrell; Oct 13, 09 at 2:43 pm
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Old Oct 13, 09, 2:46 pm
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Thanks, Sko.

To be quite honest, I have been pondering an overall cancellation of my Amex card because of all this talk about Financial Reviews and chasing credit limits, treating customers poorly and everything else.

While I find it hard to believe that everyone on here is a victim when it's F/R time, I do find it a bit odd that so many people are finding themselves caught in this situation. I have no doubt that there are a lot of people that spend too much, have too many card, request too many credit line increases, or simply have suspicious activity on their accounts. I also have no doubt that some of the people hit with F/Rs are simply picked at random. I just cant risk going to dinner or a movie and having my card denied when I am 100% on top of my payments and have never even waited till the "payment due" amount reads anything more than $0. I pay my bills the minute my charges appear on the website, not a minute later - as mentioned before, often many times per month. Simply seems too risky.
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Old Oct 13, 09, 2:55 pm
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I'd live my life. Worrying about getting a card canceled is kind of pointless, if it happens it happens. Pay your bills on time and always carry a backup.

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Old Oct 14, 09, 8:02 pm
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I don't fear the F/R as much as I fear getting caught with it when I'm in the middle of a work trip or paying for a client dinner. It seems when they decide to pull your number, you don't get any warning.

Because of that I carry a visa card as backup that is never used just-in-case, but it seems silly.
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Old Oct 14, 09, 8:07 pm
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Can reducing your stated income with them, as aforementioned, trigger, or has it been known to trigger a F/R?
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Old Oct 14, 09, 10:05 pm
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editing - sending a PM

Last edited by immaculate; Oct 14, 09 at 10:17 pm
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Old Oct 15, 09, 5:10 am
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Originally Posted by Black Tie Affair View Post
Can reducing your stated income with them, as aforementioned, trigger, or has it been known to trigger a F/R?
Again, from everything seen, its triggered by "unusual spending", negative information on your credit report (higher balances on your cards), or if you miss payment with them or someone else.

No one knows for sure.
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Old Nov 2, 09, 8:55 am
  #10  
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Hi Black Tie Affair,

Itís Beth from Amex Customer Care.

Your relationship with American Express is based on a variety of factors including your spending pattern, payment and credit history, and financial resources known to us.

To discuss your account, please contact our Account Services Department directly at 1- 800-230-1284, 24 hours a day - 7 days a week. A representative will immediately assist you with any questions you may have.
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Old Nov 3, 09, 8:55 am
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Originally Posted by DMSFCA View Post
I don't fear the F/R as much as I fear getting caught with it when I'm in the middle of a work trip or paying for a client dinner. It seems when they decide to pull your number, you don't get any warning.

Because of that I carry a visa card as backup that is never used just-in-case, but it seems silly.
This is exactly what happened to me. I was on a business trip and tried to use my Business Amex while out with a client, knowing that I had a good $5000 of credit remaining. The card came back declined. I had other cards to use, but it was still terribly embarrassing. I called Amex afterwards and it turns out they decided to lower my credit limit to the exact amount of my current balance and sent me a letter informing me of this after the fact (which of course I did not receive because I was out of town). They couldn't give me the exact reason why because it's "proprietary" and seemed rather unconcerned with the fact that it caused me problems.

Needless to say, that's the last time I used an American Express card. They lost a long-time $100K a year customer over that. I'm sure they don't care, though.
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Old Nov 8, 09, 11:32 am
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Dear Black Tie--

You really do need to chill out. There is nothing so special about an AMEX card that should prompt you to compulsively make payments every time a charge hits your account. I don't believe you said what your credit limit is, but as long as you're not approaching or exceeding it, relax and make your payment when you get the bill.

As others have said, if they're going to mess with you, they're going to mess with you. No sense trying to avoid that by sending them a payment every other day. And while I appreciate Beth's point of view, I can't honestly see what you'd gain by calling AMEX based on what you've posted. You really don't have any issues at this point.

Your defense against being hassled is twofold: simply carry one or two Master or Visas that are in good shape that you can use if your AMEX is declined (not to mention in those many places where AMEX is still not accepted at all). Then, if AMEX does hose you, make a decision based on the circumstances at the time whether or not you wish to continue to do business with them, and act accordingly.

For example, last month my AMEX was declined for a small purchase at the duty free shop at the Cairo airport. I simply switched to a MasterCard which went through fine, and asked the clerk for the AMEX decline slip. When I got home I called AMEX, told them the story, gave them the date and time on the slip, and was assured that:

1) The decline didn't come from AMEX. They said that sometimes when the communication link goes goofy it shows up as a decline at the terminal when actually no contact was made with AMEX.

2) My account is in great shape and they love me very much.

3) They will credit the HHonors points that I would have received if the transaction had gone through (I never even thought of that).

OK, fine. They get a pass on that one. And even if it would have happened in, say, a restaurant where tablemates would have been aware of the situation, I would have still done exactly the same thing. My ego isn't so fragile that it can't withstand that sort of "embarrassment."

But others who have posted here have had far more outrageous experiences than I had (or than you have had, which appears to be exactly none), and they have good reason to end their relationship. If AMEX is smart, they'll take heed and fix their problems.

In any event they're just another vendor. Just remember at all times: they are selling; you are buying. Act accordingly. And what's the line from that old poem. . ."Do not distress yourself with imaginings."
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Old Nov 9, 09, 1:08 pm
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Originally Posted by allga View Post
Dear Black Tie--

For example, last month my AMEX was declined for a small purchase at the duty free shop at the Cairo airport. I simply switched to a MasterCard which went through fine, and asked the clerk for the AMEX decline slip. When I got home I called AMEX, told them the story, gave them the date and time on the slip, and was assured that:
How funny - last year I also had my Amex also declined in Cairo at the DFS. Called Amex and they couldn't find any record of the authorization ever being attempted.
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Old Nov 9, 09, 1:40 pm
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I don't get the "embarrassing" part of getting a card declined. Cards get declined for all kinds of reasons, most of them having to do with hypersensitive fraud detectors.

Slap down you backup, grumble about fraud, and move on.
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Old Nov 10, 09, 6:15 am
  #15  
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Originally Posted by DMSFCA View Post
Called Amex and they couldn't find any record of the authorization ever being attempted.
Network failure. Sometimes it happens the other way, and American Express shows the transaction was approved but the merchant's system shows otherwise. This is why I think it's important to carry one each American Express, Mastercard and VISA, three separate authorization networks.
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