Annual statement reflects new card 'transparency'

Up to 31 million credit card holders can expect see a new annual account statement land on their doormats over the next few weeks and months. It will outline card usage over the year as well as any fees or interest charged.

The statements, the first that will be sent on each anniversary of the card being opened, are part of the industry's agreement with the Government to be more transparent about charges.

Th deal followed intense criticism from consumer groups and the Treasury Select Committee of card charges and how vital account information was displayed to customers.

Melanie Johnson, the chairwoman of The UK Cards Association said that the new statement was a key part of putting this right: "By clearly setting out costs and charges this initiative could help customers get a better deal either by being more savvy about how they use their current card, or by changing to another account that's a better fit," she said.

The statement also shows exactly how the card has been used during the year – broken down by point-of-sale spending, cash advances, balance transfers, and the applicable interest fees and charges for each of these types of transaction.

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