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Old 05-30-2017, 04:22 PM   #21
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I remember when FICO scores were not revealed to consumers. I specifically recall sitting at a loan officers desk and asking what my score was and he covered the paper with his hand.

I never did anything specifically to increase my score. I just pay my bills on time. That should be enough. If I've never been late before having high ratios shouldn't be an issue, especially since they are only using debt info and don't use any income or asset info in their formula. I always wondered if there was any good research to document a link between scores and default rates. I suspect the validity is nonexistent beyond some threshold like Karen and others suggested.
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Old 05-30-2017, 05:57 PM   #22
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I remember when FICO scores were not revealed to consumers. I specifically recall sitting at a loan officers desk and asking what my score was and he covered the paper with his hand. ......
Back in the day, I was an officer of our company's CU. On the sly, I asked the office manager run my credit report just for fun. At that time, Mt score was dinged for one inquiry. Later, when I applied for a mortgage, the bank shared my Credit score when I asked, but only because I paid for it as part of the application fee. Now the FICO is free for the asking. I think it is a good thing to know what others may judge ( or bill) you for. I am afraid to think that those who would be best served to know, Those who need to improve their scores, probably aren't aware or don't bother to know their FICO scores.
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Old 05-30-2017, 06:58 PM   #23
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I found this link beneficial. Normal FICO scores range from 300-850 but the industry (Retail, Banking, etc) FICO scores go up to 900. What a scam. Credit Basics Demystifying Credit Scoring & Credit Reports
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Old 05-30-2017, 10:15 PM   #24
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well credit scores 750+ are just a game, those under that make a huge difference in people's lives. The credit companies tricked everyone including employers that it matters. So you end up denying qualified people jobs because of low credit scores. If you got low credit every time you move you need to lay out hundreds for deposits on everything from rent to utilities. When the gas company wants $100 deposit they keep for a year or last months rent deposit that hurts peoples ability to move for better opportunities. Most would be shocked at how much credit score is used to upcharge people who can often least afford it.
And it's really sickening when you see in in action. My DD and SIL changed insurance companies. In doing so, they put a monitor on their car and evaluated their driving habits. That seems like a very reasonable way to evaluate auto insurance. Then they ended up paying more due to their poor credit score. What the heck does that have to do with their driving - which by the way, you monitored for a period of time. What a racket.

DW and I have been blessed to have jobs and have handled our money well but we have seen DD run into trouble. When you see first hand how companies put their boot on the throat of someone who is down it awakens you to what a piece of crap these companies are. I could go on, but that's another thread.

I along with OP am mystified how I don't have a perfect score. For 35 years, me and my DW have held jobs, never been late on a single payment, paid off credit card every month and never had debt other than mortgage and car - again, all paid on time and now currently all paid off. Not sure what it takes to get an "A" in this class, but I think it's rigged.
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:25 AM   #25
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Out of curiosity, I checked my FICO scores from Amex and Citibank, where I have credit cards. I don't have much debt, but the Amex balance can be high since we average $25K per month on it-all paid every month. No car loans, no student loans, etc.

Amex: 839: "Your FICOŽ Score considers the number of accounts where you are paying your bills as agreed. In your case this number is too low because you have very few accounts or because you've missed payments recently on some of your accounts." (I haven't missed any payments, ever.)

Citibank: 849: "FICOŽ Scores consider the total number of accounts a consumer holds with balances, including credit card balance amounts that appear from the most recent account statements—even if that balance was paid off. Your score was impacted by having too many accounts with balances."

Too many accounts or too few? The only other factor both mentioned was the low average age of the accounts.

amex , citi and discover are fico 8 bank card scores , they are NOT comprehensive fico scores .

in fact they do not even use 850 as a max . they run to 900 as a top score and count other debt very differently from traditional fico scores .

so you cannot compare the score to comprehensive fico scores which max at 850 .


" FICO 8 Bankcard Score doesn’t consider all credit to be equal; this is the main difference between it and your traditional FICO score. The FICO 8 Bankcard Score narrows in on your behavior with credit cards specifically, and rewards or penalizes you accordingly.

First, it’s important to understand that the exact metrics used to create customers’ FICO 8 Bankcard Scores aren’t completely known. FICO hasn’t released this information to the public. However, we do know a few general things about the FICO 8 Bankcard scoring system:

The score range is 250-900. This is broader than the traditional FICO score’s range of 300-850.
Both the base FICO score and the FICO 8 Bankcard Score look at similar credit-related behaviors. However, some factors are weighted more heavily in the FICO 8 Bankcard Score than they are in the conventional FICO score

Becoming an authorized user may not help – People with poor credit sometimes convince a friend or acquaintance with good credit to designate them as an authorized user. This is meant to help improve bad credit faster. But due to some sketchy tactics used by past customers, your FICO 8 Bankcard Score might not be helped as much by gaining authorized user status.

A high utilization ratio hurts more – In the conventional FICO model, your credit utilization ratio accounts for 30% of your score. In the FICO 8 Bankcard Score algorithm, credit utilization is more closely scrutinized. This means that carrying a big balance on your cards will do more damage to your FICO 8 Bankcard Score than it will to your base FICO score.

One-off late payments won’t pinch as much – Your history with paying your bills on time accounts for the biggest part (35%) of your conventional FICO score; missing a payment by 30 days or more could cost you big points. However, in the FICO 8 Bankcard Score model, an isolated late payment won’t sting as much.

But be careful – if you habitually make late payments on your credit card bills, your FICO 8 Bankcard Score will suffer more than it would in the traditional model. "

https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/cred...ankcard-score/

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Old 05-31-2017, 03:39 AM   #26
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I found this link beneficial. Normal FICO scores range from 300-850 but the industry (Retail, Banking, etc) FICO scores go up to 900. What a scam. Credit Basics Demystifying Credit Scoring & Credit Reports
the score that goes to 900 is not a comprehensive fico score . they are fico 8 bank card scores . they are used more by credit card issuers and are the scores you get from amex,citi and discover
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Old 05-31-2017, 04:50 AM   #27
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When you are asking someone for a loan, they get to make the rules (within the law).

If you think FICO scores are a sham and just a way to deny credit to good people, go to one of the online lending exchanges and lend some money. You can choose to ignore the FICO scores of the recipients.
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Old 05-31-2017, 06:15 AM   #28
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No need to be humble, when you're absolutely right.
It's a scam & nothing more.

Like the time in 2007 ? when I got a letter from my Insurance agent, stating that because my FICO score wasn't perfect, they couldn't give me the best rate.

I went right down to the office & almost tore his head off.
I told him straight up, listen up *******, I've had a home, at least one car, & a motorcycle insured for over 30 years without a claim, never paid late, & you're going to use some BS like this!

I'm not really a confrontational type, but this pissed me off so bad, I just totally went off on the guy.
Because many others responded the same way, they dropped that asinine practice shortly thereafter.
Wow - you do realize that the insurance agent is merely punching in your data into the insurer's database, and out pops the cost of insurance that the company tells them they must charge, right? Your agent isn't sitting at a computer with a calculator in hand, punching in numbers to compute what they will decide to charge you. I'm sure people like you make his day. At least he has a story to tell about the guy that lost it because a computer 2,000 miles away told him something he didn't like, then took it out on the agent, who has absolutely no control over it whatsoever.

And do you realize that models have shown (with hard data) that people with higher credit scores, on average, have lower claims than people who don't? Imagine that - if someone isn't able to manage their credit as well as people who do, it kind of does make sense that they probably also can't manage their lives as well, and would probably also be somewhat careless when driving, or living and maintaining a home.

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FICO and other credit scores are just a way for the credit bureaus to generate more income from the trove of data they've accumulated, so I expect weirdness. I have a report that says my credit history of 30 yrs is too short and holding my score down. IMHO it's a scam.
I'm honestly shocked at how many negative replies there are about the FICO score. Just what do people suggest they use?!?!?! Should it be an honor system like apartment rental applications, where the credit card and mortgage companies are supposed to ask applicants for a self-reported credit history? (like many people would even track things like average monthly balances, or even know what their max credit is on a card, etc.) Do you honestly think something like self-reporting (other than a FICO-type score) would ever work, for a system that deals with thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars with each individual? How would you determine who gets to pay lower interest rates? Or do you think everyone should simply be charged the same rate - either sky high to account for defaults, or everyone sings kumbayah and is only charged 1% over inflation because everyone should be nice and live in Utopia, and when people default - people just sing a little louder to drown out the lenders that are left holding the bag?

Is FICO perfect? Of course not. Does it predict the future? No, it shows - with a single numerical result - the ODDS/LIKELIHOOD of the applicant in managing their loan, based on their past history. Finance companies understand that, yes, some of those with FICO scores of 800+ WILL default....but the % of 800+ that default will be a rounding error compared to those with a FICO score of under 500 who default.

You could have someone personally looking at every single application, and the credit history of every single person who ever applies for a credit card/mortgage/etc.....if people don't mind paying 1%-3% more in interest rate to pay for a human to scan every applicant's credit history. And the funny thing is that the human would wind up doing (in one form or another) the very same thing that the FICO score computes - what the applicant's use of credit has been like based on their past accounts and spending patterns.

And in fact, I'm sure that there would be people suing for discrimination for one form or another if a human actually did the reviewing on a case-by-case basis, rather than a computer program that simply uses pure data with no possible human influence or bias.
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Old 05-31-2017, 10:44 AM   #29
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places the give you your score have to list the "worst" reasons why your score is what it is. For folks with great scores, the reasons are always petty. And that's the way it should be.
Thanks. That's the first explanation I've ever seen that actually makes sense.
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Old 05-31-2017, 11:09 AM   #30
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Wow - you do realize that the insurance agent is merely punching in your data into the insurer's database, and out pops the cost of insurance that the company tells them they must charge, right?

<SNIP>
I don't disagree with your overall treatise on the subject of FICO scores (but do see my tag line, heh, heh.) However, regarding the insurance agent of a car insurance co.: the agent DOES have the ability to "appeal" the rate (at least s/he used to). My family's car/home ins. agent was able to get my dad's insurance premium down after a fender bender had raised it. No histrionics on my dad's part. He simply talked to the agent and the agent appealed to the company. Problem solved. Whether that can still happen, I do not know. However, if not, why do we need an agent? Just go with one of the on-line places and automatically get a lower cost - lower service company. Naturally, YMMV.
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Old 05-31-2017, 12:53 PM   #31
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I had something weird happen to my FICO score in the last few months. After being very stable in the mid 820s since last summer, it suddenly dropped 24 points in April. Then this month it rose 13 points, still not back into the 820s but close.


I wasn't late on any payment, didn't apply for new credit, nothing. The only thing which happened was that my CC bill, paid in full and on time as usual, was a little over $1,000 instead of its usual ~$300. Could that, by itself, ding my FICO score for a month? The CC's limit is $6,000, so it isn't like I am anywhere near its limit.
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Old 05-31-2017, 01:37 PM   #32
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Could that, by itself, ding my FICO score for a month?
Yes. It's not a continuous process. IIRC, they take a monthly snapshot of your financial picture, so it only relates to one instant in time. If that instant differs from the previous month's snapshot, a change is likely.
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:18 PM   #33
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The CC's limit is $6,000, so it isn't like I am anywhere near its limit.
If that is your ONLY credit limit, then that's a significant change (300/6000) is 5% of your credit limit but (1000/6000) is almost 17%. I would agree that it sounds trivial. Still, it's a significant change NUMERICALLY. Now, whether that's "it" (the reason), I have no idea.

If you have 2 or 3 more cards that add to say $20,000 limit, the change would seem even more trivial and I doubt that's the reason for the FICO score change - But I don't know. We were told that our typical $3K to $5K per month on a total of about $25K limit(s) was holding our score down some (816) so YMMV.
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:40 PM   #34
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I've always wondered about the utilization metric. Let's say I have three cards with equal limits and one is at or near the limit while the other two have zero balances. My overall utilization is ~33 pct but one card is near 100 pct. Do I get dinged for having that one high balance? I've posed this question to many people in the business but I don't get consistent answers. It may be due to proprietary nature of the formula. I suspect I do get dinged which means moving my balances to a low rate card is bad for my score. Just one example of how FICO can impact behavior. I think using payment history is legit but beyond that it's questionable how the data is used. If anyone has a link I'd like to see it but since the formula is secret how could one evaluate it? Besides that the little bit we know causes behavior changes so is the formula still valid? If BOA grants me a limit increase am I instantly less likely to default?
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Old 05-31-2017, 03:59 PM   #35
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I've always wondered about the utilization metric. Let's say I have three cards with equal limits and one is at or near the limit while the other two have zero balances. My overall utilization is ~33 pct but one card is near 100 pct. Do I get dinged for having that one high balance? I've posed this question to many people in the business but I don't get consistent answers. It may be due to proprietary nature of the formula. I suspect I do get dinged which means moving my balances to a low rate card is bad for my score. Just one example of how FICO can impact behavior. I think using payment history is legit but beyond that it's questionable how the data is used. If anyone has a link I'd like to see it but since the formula is secret how could one evaluate it? Besides that the little bit we know causes behavior changes so is the formula still valid? If BOA grants me a limit increase am I instantly less likely to default?
Can't answer your questions, but I'm guessing they would wait a little while (1 to 6 months?) when you up your credit limit to see that you don't abuse it.

Based on what we were told (by the credit score provider - forget which one) I would ASSUME the biggest factor would be the 33% of total and not the 100% of one. We've always used ONE card for 95% of purchases - because it's best for us. I'm using logic here, so maybe I'm wrong. MOST CC companies know that folks with multiple CCs use the ones they have to their best advantage (best points or miles, best cash-back, lowest rate, etc.). I doubt they worry too much about the effect on the one card - but, again, that's the logic and I don't know that they use anything other than their OWN logic. YMMV
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Old 05-31-2017, 05:50 PM   #36
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I've always wondered about the utilization metric. Let's say I have three cards with equal limits and one is at or near the limit while the other two have zero balances. My overall utilization is ~33 pct but one card is near 100 pct. Do I get dinged for having that one high balance?
Assuming the high balance gets reported to the credit bureaus, yes, you do get dinged.

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I've posed this question to many people in the business but I don't get consistent answers. It may be due to proprietary nature of the formula. I suspect I do get dinged which means moving my balances to a low rate card is bad for my score. Just one example of how FICO can impact behavior. I think using payment history is legit but beyond that it's questionable how the data is used. If anyone has a link I'd like to see it but since the formula is secret how could one evaluate it? Besides that the little bit we know causes behavior changes so is the formula still valid? If BOA grants me a limit increase am I instantly less likely to default?
I don't have a link, but my responses here are from my experiences when I borrowed $500,000 on credit cards at 0% to put into savings accounts at 5%. That was years ago though.

If BOA increases your limit (assuming that's the card that's near 100% utilization), then yes, your utilization score will improve and your credit score should also improve. You're probably not any less likely to default, but it does look that way to FICO.
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Old 06-30-2017, 05:46 AM   #37
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My FICO score bounced back to where it had been before its unexpected decline back in April. Yay.
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Old 07-02-2017, 08:16 AM   #38
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Reading all the bitching about credit scores reminds me of one time I questioned a reporting agency about my score. The supervisor told me to remember that the report/score is a "snapshot" in time. If that snapshot takes place just after all your debts are received but prior to your payment, the numbers might get skewed. In my estimation, that snapshot never seems to get taken just after you pay all your bills and before any new charges get posted. I think it's a system you can't beat.
I posted earlier, I sometimes ask for credit limit increases to improve my score.
It helps. That's about all I do except to keep those payments current. On line bill pay is a big help, especially auto pay and recurring payments. Relax.
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Old 07-02-2017, 09:07 AM   #39
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Reading all the bitching about credit scores reminds me of one time I questioned a reporting agency about my score. The supervisor told me to remember that the report/score is a "snapshot" in time. If that snapshot takes place just after all your debts are received but prior to your payment, the numbers might get skewed. In my estimation, that snapshot never seems to get taken just after you pay all your bills and before any new charges get posted. I think it's a system you can't beat.
....
You can pay your bill before they are due, like all your CC , simply pay the balance every 2 weeks and whenever you get your bill, it will be 1/2 or even zero of what you spent.

With Online payments, it's easy to log on and pay at anytime, so you can affect the snapshot.
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Old 07-03-2017, 09:46 AM   #40
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You can pay your bill before they are due, like all your CC , simply pay the balance every 2 weeks and whenever you get your bill, it will be 1/2 or even zero of what you spent.

With Online payments, it's easy to log on and pay at anytime, so you can affect the snapshot.
Yeah, I've often thought of the cost of the "float" that many of us use with our credit cards is a small hit on our credit score. I've never worried about it since anything over 800 is gold. Our score has bounced around but never dipped below 800 since they've become readily available. Realistically, for retirees living only from assets, the biggest single issue in getting a loan is showing income. Several of us have discussed this at length in the past. If it's just the FICO "game" (like collecting airline miles) paying early will probably buy you a better score. Not sure what for if you are already in the 800s, but YMMV.
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