The New Rules of Credit Cards

Banks are raising rates and cutting credit. You can beat them at their game.

Paul McNamee has four credit cards, which he generally pays off in full each month, and always on time. So the Ellicott City, Md., computer scientist was taken aback when he recently received letters regarding three of the cards in the span of a couple of weeks.

Interest rates on two of them were going up -- one by nearly six points -- and fees on a host of transactions, including balance transfers and cash advances, were rising on the third card. "I'm perturbed," says McNamee.

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Anne Kates Smith
Executive Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Anne Kates Smith brings Wall Street to Main Street, with decades of experience covering investments and personal finance for real people trying to navigate fast-changing markets, preserve financial security or plan for the future. She oversees the magazine's investing coverage,  authors Kiplinger’s biannual stock-market outlooks and writes the "Your Mind and Your Money" column, a take on behavioral finance and how investors can get out of their own way. Smith began her journalism career as a writer and columnist for USA Today. Prior to joining Kiplinger, she was a senior editor at U.S. News & World Report and a contributing columnist for TheStreet. Smith is a graduate of St. John's College in Annapolis, Md., the third-oldest college in America.