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Macy's Store and Visa Card / suspicious finance charges on macy's credit account

1 United States Review updated:
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I just got off the phone with Macy's Credit Customer service. I called because I had a perfectly proper $120 charge on my store card .

My bill was due 2 days from today. Payment’s already processing at my bank so they will receive payment on time (like they usually do).

But get this – they actually posted a $2.15 finance charge to the account, even though it was not yet past the due date..

Call me picky, but aren’t finance charges supposed to apply *after* the bill due date?

I had a 0 balance before the $120 charge, so this “finance charge” was not related to any prior past-due amount.

So I call up, and guess what – Macy’s saw fit to “proactively” apply a finance charge to my account. Per the US call center rep – “This is our way of letting you know what the finance charge *would* be *if* you missed your payment”. What??!!

Apparently, this is their “standard procedure” for all customer accounts.

If you pay in full, on time, the finance charge is struck from your account. Which is fine – everything balances out.

Here’s the catch though – when Average Joe look up his account balance on Macy’s website, he sees the amount due *including* the finance charge – in my case $122.15 ($ 120 in purchases, $2.15 in finance charges)

So one could very easily send in a payment inclusive of the mystery finance charge, which Macy’s then allows to sit as a “credit” in the account.

Which is also fine, but suppose 10,000 customers (conservatively) send in an extra buck or two in alleged finance charges. These will all sit as credits in their individual accounts – and guess who picks up the interest on that ~20,000 Dollars – yep – Macy’s. I wouldn’t mind having a conversation with someone over there about what APR they pay their customers for these “credits” in their accounts.

This reeks of a scam, even though I’m sure it’s somewhere in the fine-print of their credit agreement.

I’m gonna blog this everywhere I can. Can you tell I’m peeved?

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  • Mi
      19th of Jun, 2008
    +1 Votes

    I saw the same thing today, called them up and had the EXACT same conversation with their rep.

    Provisional finance charge? WTF is that?

    "So it says my balance is $X+1 but you're telling me it is actually $X, isn't that misleading?"


    What more could I say to that? This is ridiculous and I don't understand how it's legal.

  • Pi
      23rd of Jul, 2008
    +1 Votes

    got the same thing today... called up and yes it is a finance charge of the account balance if they will not receive payment after due date... wow.

    so lame i could puke.

  • Gu
      5th of Aug, 2008
    +1 Votes

    My husband had the same experience last night and he is a software engineer who is very well versed in paying bills online. He simply mentioned that he paid the bill and the amount and that is when I realized the amount that he paid was different than the paper statement. The website is completely deceitful and gives one amount as "statement balance" and another amount as "current balance". When my husband paid the "current balance" it included finance charges that would have been incurred if our payment had been late. In addition, my inquiry call was routed to a Call Center in India which provided no assistance other than a credit to my account . The representative repeatedly referred to my issue as an "error". This is just another example of an American company selling out to India and also rolling customers under the bus with finance charges that were not incurred. I have spent hours on hold this morning attempting to contact Macy's Executive offices in New York (212-695-4400) to discuss my situation and give them an opportunity to change their website and practices. I left my name and number and my complaint with the "Macy's Operator" but was told that Macy's policy is not to return calls to customers when they leave a name and number with the operator . I will not let this one slip by, it is illegal! I plan on contacting the Better Business Bureau and every consumer advocacy group that I can find. I suggest that you do the same. I will also add Macy's to my blacklist of stores that will no longer receive any of my business. Target has been on the top of my list for a very long time, however, it looks like Macy's has moved into that slot. This has class action lawsuit written all over it!

  • Gu
      5th of Aug, 2008
    +1 Votes

    IT'S ME, AGAIN! The number I listed above is not correct. Macy's Corporate Offices are located in Ohio (513.579-7000). I spoke to Alrene Bixler, Presidential Correspondence, a.k.a. c--- blocker for the CEO. She gave me a canned response and said that she would present my concern to management and the board. I attempted to give Macy's the opportunity to address my issue and to fix the problem by changing there website but my complaint fell on deaf ears. I also requested a return phone call within 24 hours with a resolution. She said that no one from Macy's Executive Office will be calling me back because "it is not their policy". Talk about customer service...truly amazing! Arlene only wanted to talk about Macy's finance charge policies. I told Arlene that she was not listening to my complaint and that Macy's is pocketing extra money through fraudulent finance charges. I explained that this issue is happening to others and they are losing loyal customers and that Macy's needs to do the right thing. She did not blink an eye. I let her know that I have contacted the Attorney General's Office in Ohio and I am filing a complaint. I am also awaiting a call from an Attorney regarding the process for filing a class action lawsuit. Arlene could care less! I thought they were a step above, but there telephone customer service is horrendous! Please tell everyone you know to BOYCOTT Macy's and by all means close your Macy's credit card account! BLACKLIST-MY TOP THREE- 1. MACY'S 2. TARGET 3. CIRCUIT CITY

  • Ja
      3rd of Dec, 2008
    0 Votes

    Macy's Boycotter, your husband is a software engineer and he can't tell the difference between a "current balance" and "statement balance"? There is a reason that information is available via website.It's to give the most current and up to date information possible.People want to know their balance including charges made after their billing period was closed and statement was sent. The provisional finance charge is printed to show what charges would be applied if the balance wasn't paid in full.The bill does state what the full balance is without the finance charge. There is no scam.

  • Ka
      23rd of Dec, 2008
    0 Votes

    Jack Simon, I respectfully disagree. I'm certain that if you check your statement online, it specifies what each amount is for. However, if you go on just to "Pay your Bill", as I did today, it only reflects your total bill to pay, including the pre-applied "provisional" finance charge. I'd like to throw in there, my bill isn't due for well over a week, and it's tacked on already.

    While I don't plan on cancelling my Macy's account just yet over this (it is only $1.49, and I would get it back the following month), I do find their online bill pay structure misleading at best. I cannot confirm that it's intentional, but they don't seem to be in a big hurry to address the concern, do they?

  • Re
      28th of Dec, 2008
    +1 Votes

    I agree with the comment that this is misleading. The second time I saw this process and asked Macy's, I got the same response.

    Essentially, the have figured out an interest-free way to borrow money from their customers. I don't think that is what we sign up for when we get a Macy's card.

    I have asked the Connecticut Attorney General to investigate.

  • Th
      9th of Mar, 2009
    +1 Votes

    This is exactly what we just discovered recently. This is fraud plain and simple. Go get em.

  • Di
      13th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    Exact same problem. Here is another thing, in fine print on the back of the statement it says why they are charging the finance. And if you read it, you will be outraged because pretty much you are bound to pay your statement in full before you can buy something else and be without a finance charge. I purchased at Macy's and split my payments but they were on time and over minimum required. I still got finance charges of a $1. Apparently, because I made a purchase while I had a balance on my account, they charged me. This is unreasonable because they are telling me that I have to pay everything off before I can purchase something else?! Funny thing is, when you pay instore, cashiers tell me "you don't have to pay it in full, just do the min or a little more." What, are they trained to say that so we will be charged!? If I knew this is happening, I could have paid it all in full right away!
    I am not using Macy's card again and will tell others not to sign up for it! They are using my money and wasting my time when I call and wait 20 min to speak to a rep!

  • Jo
      22nd of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    59 year old Army officer paid off $1100 Macy's bill in full (March 2009) in Seattle and 22.9% interest charge remained as residual amount. This is unAmerican mainipulation of credit system to milk out interest from "sheep". Same thing was done 2000 years ago when silver and gold coins were shaved, ground, "dusted", grooved or otherwise damaged to extract and steal whatever "they" could. We all know who they are at Marshall Fields. Then they act stupid when you catch them, like, oh we would never do something like that intentionally.

    Vote with your Macy's card. Don't use it. Enough people stand up and say no more, then they "vit gibbing yoose baad time" AND will get back to shaving down coins and changing the denominations on bills.


  • Ta
      2nd of Apr, 2009
    +1 Votes

    "The website is completely deceitful and gives one amount as "statement balance" and another amount as "current balance". " I completely agree with everyone. I had to very carefully look at my bill then subtract MYSELF the finance charge that they SNEAK into the bill. I only get online statements and I just had an argument with the ridiculous person at Macy's on the phone!!! I'm cancelling my card. It's fraud!

  • Nw
      29th of Dec, 2009
    0 Votes

    I pay my bill by snail mail. I just looked at the New Balance which is written in bold letters. It includes the bogus interest charges. The actual amount owed I had to derive by reading all the lighter amounts listed above it. For someone in a hurry, they would just see the bold balance and assume that was what they owed. That's what I did and am now going to have to wait to get my $2 back. It seems there are a lot of us that see this as a way to extract a loan from customers. Reading the fine print at the bottom of the printed statement, you will find that with this proactive charge being applied, the "actual ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE charged on that account is 61.32%" !!! They can have their card back!

  • Aa
      10th of Jan, 2010
    0 Votes

    I believe this is a situation where I feel laughed at by the visa corporation. I am going to pay my balance without the financial charges and they better not charge me interest over this "financial charges" that they decide to calculate ahead of time. And then I will cancel this visa macy's card.

  • No
      17th of Feb, 2010
    0 Votes

    Well, I have a better story then the above. I opened a new charge with Macy's in Dec of last year. When I got my first bill it included a $2.00 interest charge. It said that if I paid before the due date then I would get a credit on my next statement. Well I paid the $92.48 that I owed and not the $94.48 that they were asking for. Well on my next statement it said that I still owed the $2.00. So I tried calling the customer service dept. which is a joke. I was told that it would wipe out on the next statement. I said ok, well got the new statement today, and now the total is $4.00. They just keep adding in the $2.00 every month that I don't pay it. So I called again and was told that I needed to pay the $4.00 and next month they would credit me, even though I don't owe them anything. I was going to pay it and then cancel the card. But I wasn't brought up to pay for something that I didn't owe. So I called back, spoke to a supervisor who said I was correct and put me to a $0 balance. I am so mad at them that I called later and canceled the card. With times being like they are can Macy's really afford to piss off their customers like that. I won't be shopping there anymore. I have plenty of other options of where to shop and not have to go through this to get what I want.

  • Me
      1st of Jul, 2010
    0 Votes

    Oh My God. This is true. I and my friend have same experiences with macys. In the statement my total amount was $201+$2 interest. So noticing that the $2 were interest charges if we miss to make the payment, i made a payment of $201. But my next statement came up saying that there was a $2 due on my account and the interest for that is another $2. So the total due was $4. Heres where it differed between me and my friend. I paid off the $4 and then called customer service the next month and got it reverted to my account. But friend did not make the payment. She saw an amount of $38 due on her account. Which included late payment fee of $30 and an interest charge of $4 plus the previous balance of $4.

  • Po
      31st of Dec, 2010
    0 Votes

    This is about a mattress Macy's sold me that is CLEARLY defective to the tune of $1000; I toss and turn all night long, and wake up in the middle of a crater! I am tired of talking to them -- I agree w/Macy's boycotter, their customer service is HORRIFIC at best and PATHETIC in truth! They think that by avoiding this issue, it will go away!
    I will NEVER buy anything ELSE at Macy's again and am going to do everything in my power to tell everyone about this experience and warn them NOT to shop at Macy's!
    When will these companies learn to put PEOPLE over PROFITS???????

  • Wi
      19th of Jan, 2011
    0 Votes

    Dear Macy's/Bloomingdale's credit customers, I work for the call center in one of the departments for these two companies. I deal with their credit accounts and I hate to be a traitor but my advise to you is RUN! I and my other coworkers are disgusted by the craziness that we see. All the scams, loopholes and sneaky ways to make an extra buck are appalling. For instance, if you typically make minimum payments on your account and then one month you decide to pay off the total balance before the coming due date, the company will wait until about 5 days after you pay that amount, leaving yourself at a zero balance, and then place "remaining interest" on the account. Trick is, you won't know about it because it is placed on the account AFTER you pay it in full. You can even ask the amount needed to zero out your account before making the large payment. They'll tell you that amount. But the "remaining interest" goes on AFTER the payment. And it's so conveniently within the same billing cycle that you made your payment. So you won't even see that there's a new balance until your next statement arrives. Assuming you even check it considering you just paid your balance off. If you don't catch this before your next due date you'll get hit with a late charge and another interest charge. I could go on and on about this.

    Secondly, you may notice that you make payments in the store to your store account, and the receipt says the payment was properly applied to the correct account. But the system "accidentally, somehow" puts the payment your Macy's/Bloomie's American Express account for purchases made outside of the store. You know it was properly applied. But you don't think about it. The collection calls start but you can't be reached. So there's late and interest fees piling up and unless you are reached to put the payment where it should have gone, your balance will grow. Now, say this goes untreated for 2 months. You'll report to the credit bureau, get two late charges. If you finally have it straightened out, one late charge will be credited. Not both and most likely not the interest charges. And that's usually only if you ask.

    As I said, there are SO many sneaky ways that they mess things up to swindle customer's out of money. Purposely NOT sending new customers their bills, not applying discounts from the store, lying about credit card terms, creating a separate account for purchases made outside of the store, and not telling you about it, changing the minimum payment amount but not sending notice. We are all disgusted. I personally, try to credit fees and help these customers as much as I can. It looks bad to my superiors but i'm human and I have a conscious. I hate working for such a slimy, unprofessional company but as hard as it is to find a job, I must stay where I am. Hopefully i've helped some people by coming out with the truth.

    So do your research and realize that signing up for an account to get a 20% discount on your purchase may be the biggest mistake of your credit history. Macy's/Bloomies will screw you one way or another. I can honestly say I will never have any interest in EVER having a credit card with either of these slimy companies.

  • H2
      20th of Nov, 2014
    0 Votes

    I had the same experience as others above. I have had a Macy's American Express card for over 10 years and never have had problems until recently.

    I had a $0 balance, pay off purchases on time each month. In October 2014, I had a purchase of $132.00 due on November 6, 2014. The payment amount of $132.00 cleared my bank on November 5, 2014. Today, November 20, 2014, I receive a bill from Macy's indicating I owe $138.69. They applied a "late payment fee" of $5 and claim I owe a finance charge of $2.09. THIS IS FRAUD!!!

    Now I have to spend MY valuable time squabbling with them to resolve the issue, and confirm that this does not appear on my credit report. If others on this board can advise how this FRAUDULENT ACTIVITY can be stopped for others, or Macy's somehow penalized, I would be willing to expend even more effort pursuing it.

  • Cr
      30th of Aug, 2017
    +1 Votes

    We all should post our compliants about this on Facebook. It wouldn't think it would take long for Macy's management to do somehting about it if it went viral on Facebook!

  • Am
      3rd of Oct, 2017
    0 Votes

    @Crosey I agree, post it on Facebook. I am the latest victim of Macy's scam. And they lowered my Macy's AE credit limit by $400, and my Macy's card by $600.

    Apparently there's a clause in Macy's agreement which states that customers cannot bring a class action lawsuit againt them, and vice versa.

    So, we have to pay a $2 fee forever?!!! Time to cancel my card.

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