Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

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lhl12
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Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:40 am

Since Fidelity is able to offer a 2% cash back Visa card (1.5% on the first $15,000 of spending) with automatic direct monthly deposit into a Fidelity account, why can't/won't Vanguard do the same? Perhaps Vanguard could do even better given their not-for-profit status?

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Rainier
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by Rainier » Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:43 am

Fidelity most likely loses money on a 2% cash back card. It is just a vehicle to earn other income.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by neoptolemus412 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:37 pm

lhl12 wrote:Since Fidelity is able to offer a 2% cash back Visa card (1.5% on the first $15,000 of spending) with automatic direct monthly deposit into a Fidelity account, why can't/won't Vanguard do the same? Perhaps Vanguard could do even better given their not-for-profit status?
Vanguard rarely advertises or spends much on promotional products such as this (not to mention they are not a bank). These cards are like 0% balance transfers. Companies utilize these tactics to attract new customers. Vanguard does this by low ERs. Vanguard is moving more towards a one-stop shopping model, where they believe consumers want straight forward investment products at minimal costs. This is why they do not have high cost, advisory services. The belief is investors who consider buy & hold strategies would prefer straight forward, low-cost investments rather than a credit card w/ 0% interest or money back.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by YttriumNitrate » Wed Aug 28, 2013 12:54 pm

Rainier wrote:Fidelity most likely loses money on a 2% cash back card. It is just a vehicle to earn other income.
With merchant fees over 2%, the occasional person who carries a monthly balance, and a default rate that is probably near rock bottom, I'd be quite surprised if Fidelity/FIA is losing money on that credit card.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:00 pm

neoptolemus412 wrote:
lhl12 wrote:Since Fidelity is able to offer a 2% cash back Visa card (1.5% on the first $15,000 of spending) with automatic direct monthly deposit into a Fidelity account, why can't/won't Vanguard do the same? Perhaps Vanguard could do even better given their not-for-profit status?
Vanguard rarely advertises or spends much on promotional products such as this (not to mention they are not a bank). These cards are like 0% balance transfers. Companies utilize these tactics to attract new customers. Vanguard does this by low ERs. Vanguard is moving more towards a one-stop shopping model, where they believe consumers want straight forward investment products at minimal costs. This is why they do not have high cost, advisory services. The belief is investors who consider buy & hold strategies would prefer straight forward, low-cost investments rather than a credit card w/ 0% interest or money back.
I don't view a 2% cash back credit card as a promotional product. I have one and have had it for many years. I view it as a core component of my financial management. It allows me to capture a meaningful portion of the credit card fees that would otherwise go to someone else. This is exactly what Vanguard does in its investment products, and I think a strong credit card offering would be completely consistent with their mission.

P.S. Fidelity is not a bank either.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by stan1 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:04 pm

I'd rather Vanguard have low expense ratios than a 2% cash back credit card.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:25 pm

... because many of us would consider moving to another firm if the ERs were affected. Cash back cards work well for companies whose customers carry a balance; I hope Vanguard customers know better.

More seriously, Vanguard claims to have its interests aligned with their customers/owners. A rewards credit card would blur the issue, since it is only a win for Vanguard when it's a lose for the customer.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:44 pm

TomatoTomahto wrote:... because many of us would consider moving to another firm if the ERs were affected. Cash back cards work well for companies whose customers carry a balance; I hope Vanguard customers know better.

More seriously, Vanguard claims to have its interests aligned with their customers/owners. A rewards credit card would blur the issue, since it is only a win for Vanguard when it's a lose for the customer.
Assume for purposes of this thread that a 2% cash back card is not a money loser (which other threads seem to confirm), and would therefore not affect Vanguard's ER's.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by frugaltype » Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:58 pm

lhl12 wrote: Assume for purposes of this thread that a 2% cash back card is not a money loser (which other threads seem to confirm), and would therefore not affect Vanguard's ER's.
I think Schwab got rid of its 2% card because they were losing money on it. How many Vanguard customers do you think aren't paying in full each month?

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by gkaplan » Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:09 pm

Vanguard is in the mutual fund business, not the credit card business.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by MnD » Wed Aug 28, 2013 2:13 pm

They are not a investment/financial supermarket like Schwab or Fidelity, and even Schwab couldn't get their 2% card to work out financially or presumably they would still have it.
It sounds good in theory for a financial supermarket model. Even if it broke even, having 2% of your customers credit card spending deposited into brokerage accounts is nothing to sneeze at. That credit card deal might end up capturing a households entire investment net worth if they are happy with the products and services.

Cap1 in contrast is a bank with a huge credit card division, gets $59 per year for their 2% Visa, which they promote like crazy and have for years now.
Must be working for them.....

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by rj49 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:02 pm

Even if Fidelity loses money on the cash back itself, it gets customers in the door to buy their funds, and they make it up with fees, selling high-profit financial products, and getting customers locked into their company. It's the same reason why Amazon sells its Kindle Fire at near or below cost, because they know they can get enough customers buying Amazon products and services to make it worthwhile. The same thing goes for airline credit cards--they get you as a loyal customer by giving you an incentive to buy more things and fly on their airline. VG gives rewards to its customers through low fees and expense ratios and index funds that are more beneficial to long-term investor wealth, and that's a better way to attract and keep customers than cash back gimmicks (or Fidelity's other cheap trick, temporarily lowered expense ratios, or undercutting Vanguard on only a few of their Spartan funds while keeping fees high for everything else).

I went into a Fidelity advisor meeting with my sister for planning an inherited IRA, and they gave her the options of a snazzy portfolio of managed funds with expense ratios near 2%, or a managed portfolio with a fee of 2% or so of assets, so they know how to get profits out of their customers (after my advice, she told the advisor to invest everything in a balanced portfolio of low-cost index funds).

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by gerrym51 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:07 pm

i pay off my credit card every month. get 1 percent in disney dollars. since we go to WDW frequently it usually covers most of park passes.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:19 pm

gkaplan wrote:Vanguard is in the mutual fund business, not the credit card business.
No, Vanguard is in the financial services business. Mutual funds are one of those services, but there are many others that Vanguard provides today -- Institutional Money Management, ETF's, brokerage accounts, trust services, investment consulting services, donor advised funds, etc. There's no reason credit cards couldn't be another, IF they are additive to Vanguard's offering and if they allow customers a better overall deal.
Last edited by lhl12 on Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:22 pm

frugaltype wrote:
lhl12 wrote: Assume for purposes of this thread that a 2% cash back card is not a money loser (which other threads seem to confirm), and would therefore not affect Vanguard's ER's.
I think Schwab got rid of its 2% card because they were losing money on it. How many Vanguard customers do you think aren't paying in full each month?
I don't know why Schwab got rid of their card - they never told the public. Perhaps they were losing money on it, but perhaps not. Vanguard would only need to break even.

Fidelity and Capital One both seem happy with their offerings, and they are both for-profit enterprises.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by nisiprius » Wed Aug 28, 2013 3:24 pm

You would have to ask Vanguard, but there are a lot of things Vanguard doesn't do. My personal perception is that Vanguard has a pretty good sense of identity and a sense of what their "core competencies" are, and doesn't go too far outside them. There are plenty of places where you can get a credit card and it's not clear to me why one would think Vanguard could do this particularly well.

I recently got an email from someone at Vanguard that contained the slogan

"Vanguard's core purpose: To take a stand for all investors, treat them fairly, and give them the best chance for investment success."

Fidelity says "Fidelity Investments is among the most diversified financial services companies in the world, offering a full range of product solutions for individual investors, employers, institutions and intermediaries. Our fundamental mission is to help customers and clients achieve their financial objectives." I don't know how much to make of mission statements and corporate gobbledegook but that sounds a little broader than Vanguard's.

Some other things that Vanguard doesn't do: storefronts and face-to-face meetings with clients; as far as I know, it doesn't sponsor sports events like Fidelity, which sponsored America's Cup last year; it doesn't operate a bank like Schwab.

Some things Fidelity doesn't do include, oddly enough, ETFs.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by dumbmoney » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:46 am

nisiprius wrote:Some things Fidelity doesn't do include, oddly enough, ETFs.
Weirdly, they have exactly one ETF, about 10 years old. Recently they've registered a bunch of new ones - some me-too sector funds and some actively managed bond funds.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by WendyW » Thu Aug 29, 2013 6:04 am

Vanguard vs Fidelity in my mind is like Wal-Mart vs Target.

Target has nicer amenities, and has weekly specials. However, the customer still pays for these features in the end: everything at Target is Slightly more expensive.

There's no free lunch.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by neoptolemus412 » Thu Aug 29, 2013 6:35 am

Ultimately, a credit card is a promotional product that requires tons of marketing. This is why mailboxes get flooded with ads. Companies offering cards have to continually add new customers to cover those that pay off balances in full, 0% balance transfers, default, or late payments. It's a monster that needs constant feeding to keep itself working. It's a bad business to startup as it takes exorbitant costs and tons of upfront money. However, many do it b/c they want to bring in new customers and a credit card is an easy way to create brand awareness.

Vanguard has little reason to create such awareness. Vanguard does not need a credit card to attract clients. Have you seen a vanguard ad on television? Have you seen vanguard in popular, non-business or finance, magazines? They operate on a different sphere where clients come to them. The reason: $2 trillion in aum. The majority of it is passively invested with low ERs. Vanguard's annual growth on their aum is enough in one year to place them in the top asset management firms period. No reason to offer credit to strangers to attract new customers, when retirement plans, institutional, and retail investors are already beating down the door.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lrak » Thu Aug 29, 2013 8:39 am

gkaplan wrote:Vanguard is in the mutual fund business, not the credit card business.
Neither is Fidelity or Schwab. Bank of America issues the credit cards. You just get double value if you deposit the points into Fidelity (and formerly Schwab) accounts instead of redeeming them in one of the usual methods.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by neoptolemus412 » Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:16 am

lhl12 wrote:
I don't view a 2% cash back credit card as a promotional product. I have one and have had it for many years. I view it as a core component of my financial management. It allows me to capture a meaningful portion of the credit card fees that would otherwise go to someone else. This is exactly what Vanguard does in its investment products, and I think a strong credit card offering would be completely consistent with their mission.

P.S. Fidelity is not a bank either.
Simple business logic dictates a company offer perks, discounts, and rewards to build customer loyalty when your businesses cannot differentiate from competitors. Why does Apple offer minimal discounts? Their is absurd demand for their products. Credit cards are the polar opposite. They have little to no differentiation and the 'cash back' rewards are simply a tool to get consumers addicted to using their products.

A credit card is not a core financial management tool. It's a gimmick to convince people they need to pay with plastic vs. cash. Yes, credit cards offer some protection. However, a risk of paying 8-25% interest on simple purchases outweighs this protection the majority of times. Not to mention the risk of fees of transfers, late payments, disputes, ect. If you are one of the few that pays off the card monthly and hooked on 'perks', you're fooling yourself that it's making a major impact in your life. Proper budgeting, savings, or investment planning are financial management tools, not chasing coupons or perks. I've yet to meet a millionaire or successful businesswoman obsessed with credit card points. It's like the lottery. Suckers keep buying in b/c they think they're going to game the system. Credit card companies win in the end. Look at a 10Q/K for Amex and see the absurd funds spent on advertising and the revenues from fees.

Also, I think we all acknowledge that banks are not the only companies offering credit cards. Target, Macys, Universities, and tons of other businesses offer credit cards through corporate sponsorship deals. Again, it's an easy way to generate advertising and brand awareness. Vanguard has $2 trillion in aum. Easier ways to create brand loyalty than getting into the carousel of retaining credit card users.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by lhl12 » Thu Aug 29, 2013 11:41 am

neoptolemus412 wrote:
lhl12 wrote:
I don't view a 2% cash back credit card as a promotional product. I have one and have had it for many years. I view it as a core component of my financial management. It allows me to capture a meaningful portion of the credit card fees that would otherwise go to someone else. This is exactly what Vanguard does in its investment products, and I think a strong credit card offering would be completely consistent with their mission.

P.S. Fidelity is not a bank either.
Simple business logic dictates a company offer perks, discounts, and rewards to build customer loyalty when your businesses cannot differentiate from competitors. Why does Apple offer minimal discounts? Their is absurd demand for their products. Credit cards are the polar opposite. They have little to no differentiation and the 'cash back' rewards are simply a tool to get consumers addicted to using their products.

A credit card is not a core financial management tool. It's a gimmick to convince people they need to pay with plastic vs. cash. Yes, credit cards offer some protection. However, a risk of paying 8-25% interest on simple purchases outweighs this protection the majority of times. Not to mention the risk of fees of transfers, late payments, disputes, ect. If you are one of the few that pays off the card monthly and hooked on 'perks', you're fooling yourself that it's making a major impact in your life. Proper budgeting, savings, or investment planning are financial management tools, not chasing coupons or perks. I've yet to meet a millionaire or successful businesswoman obsessed with credit card points. It's like the lottery. Suckers keep buying in b/c they think they're going to game the system. Credit card companies win in the end. Look at a 10Q/K for Amex and see the absurd funds spent on advertising and the revenues from fees.

Also, I think we all acknowledge that banks are not the only companies offering credit cards. Target, Macys, Universities, and tons of other businesses offer credit cards through corporate sponsorship deals. Again, it's an easy way to generate advertising and brand awareness. Vanguard has $2 trillion in aum. Easier ways to create brand loyalty than getting into the carousel of retaining credit card users.
I disagree. You have made some assertions that may be true in some instances, but which are certainly not true universally.

First, while many credit card offers are promotional for issuers, not all are. Amazon, for example, uses its card to drive traffic to its website, which increases its scale, which allows it to build volume, which allows it to charge lower prices to customers. Fidelity's 2% cash back card doesn't get advertised heavily or proactively mailed to people either - it is an additional service to its customers.

Also, a credit card is not just a "gimmick". While some people may use it as a financing vehicle (which all Bogleheads would agree is a poor choice), it is also an electronic payment system that for many people is more convenient than cash. There is an embedded "spread" within that electronic payment system, which a 2% cash back card allows a user to capture themselves (instead of paying to the credit card issuers. Many Bogleheads use the Fidelity or Capital One cards for this purpose. I pay off my balance each month, and I get 2% back on all purchases -- automatically, month after month, year after year. It is entirely Bogleheadish for someone to squeeze the credit card spread out of the system and capture it myself. If I charge $50,000/year on my card, then that's $1,000/year of benefit that I get in rebates. Over multiple decades, that is a LOT of money.

I think it ought to be possible for Vanguard to create a 2% (or more) cash back card that is not marketed promotionally, but instead is intended to allow cardholders to capture that electronic payment spread (without carrying any balances) while also making Vanguard that much more powerful a player in the financial markets, thereby allowing its customers better pricing and lower costs due to its ever-increasing economies of scale (like Amazon).

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by rustymutt » Thu Aug 29, 2013 11:58 am

Because I would rather have lower expense ratios, than extra thrills other institutions offer.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:05 pm

lhl12 wrote:[snip...]
Also, a credit card is not just a "gimmick". While some people may use it as a financing vehicle (which all Bogleheads would agree is a poor choice), it is also an electronic payment system that for many people is more convenient than cash. There is an embedded "spread" within that electronic payment system, which a 2% cash back card allows a user to capture themselves (instead of paying to the credit card issuers. Many Bogleheads use the Fidelity or Capital One cards for this purpose. I pay off my balance each month, and I get 2% back on all purchases -- automatically, month after month, year after year. It is entirely Bogleheadish for someone to squeeze the credit card spread out of the system and capture it myself. If I charge $50,000/year on my card, then that's $1,000/year of benefit that I get in rebates. Over multiple decades, that is a LOT of money.

I think it ought to be possible for Vanguard to create a 2% (or more) cash back card that is not marketed promotionally, but instead is intended to allow cardholders to capture that electronic payment spread (without carrying any balances) while also making Vanguard that much more powerful a player in the financial markets, thereby allowing its customers better pricing and lower costs due to its ever-increasing economies of scale (like Amazon).
You're preaching to the choir here. Not counting my wife's Amex Reward Points (I much prefer cash, but that's a topic for another thread), in the past 12 months we've gotten more than $2k in rebates. I think that, even with fees charged to vendors, my family is a net loss to the card issuers since we always pay in full. Why would I want Vanguard in that position? I much prefer Vanguard and my family on the same team, not on opposing sides.

Edited to fix typo

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by dpc » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:13 pm

I think it ought to be possible for Vanguard to create a 2% (or more) cash back card that is not marketed promotionally, but instead is intended to allow cardholders to capture that electronic payment spread (without carrying any balances) while also making Vanguard that much more powerful a player in the financial markets, thereby allowing its customers better pricing and lower costs due to its ever-increasing economies of scale (like Amazon).
It's certainly possible. But don't think you've made any kind of a case that doing so would make Vanguard a "much more powerful player". It's just another type of loss leader and apparently, up to this point, they've decided to not offer it. That's the great thing about the market economy. They're free to decide what to offer and we're free to decide where we spend our money. Also, until now, I've never heard anyone describe a 2% cash back credit card as a "core component" of their financial management. I see it as more like clipping coupons or chasing sales. But I find managing money to be very boring - that's probably just me.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by mikestorm » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:22 pm

The 2% cash back is a kickback from the high merchant bankcard fees retailers have to pay. Didn't we come to Vanguard to get away from that type of behavior? Why not ask why not a 2% front end load?

Vanguard is pro low fee, which sometimes (but not always) aligns with being pro consumer.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by telemark » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:31 pm

Selling directly to individuals may not be that large a part of Vanguard's business. Most of my Vanguard money is held in a 401K managed by Fidelity.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by macchiato » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:54 pm

I like 2% cashback and similar schemes, I happily employ them to my benefit, but they are in a whole separate bucket, which is controlling monthly spending. Vanguard is in my investment bucket.

My no-nonsense relationship with Vanguard is nearly perfect. If they add such schemes, I'd take that as a negative signal to the business and to the decisionmakers there.

The phrase may not be directly applicable, but "don't **** where you eat" comes to mind :)

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by abuss368 » Thu Aug 29, 2013 12:58 pm

Simple - Vanguard is not a bank.
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by SpringMan » Thu Aug 29, 2013 1:06 pm

Though there is a Fidelity Bank as far as I can tell, it has nothing to do with Fidelity Investments. The credit cards offered by Fidelity Investments are Visa and American Express cards. The fact that Vanguard is not a bank is not a simple answer. Vanguard has had a relationship with PNC bank in the past, not sure if they still do.
edit: Vanguard still does have a PNC bank relationship, see link here-
https://personal.vanguard.com/us/help/F ... tent.jsp#h
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by frugaltype » Thu Aug 29, 2013 3:38 pm

WendyW wrote:Vanguard vs Fidelity in my mind is like Wal-Mart vs Target.

Target has nicer amenities, and has weekly specials. However, the customer still pays for these features in the end: everything at Target is Slightly more expensive.

There's no free lunch.
I'm pretty sure Vanguard isn't outsourcing to China, or locking its night shift in the buildings. That sort of thing is why stuff at Walmart is cheaper.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by YttriumNitrate » Thu Aug 29, 2013 4:31 pm

frugaltype wrote:I'm pretty sure Vanguard isn't outsourcing to China, or locking its night shift in the buildings. That sort of thing is why stuff at Walmart is cheaper.
Gosh darn it, I knew it! That's why the expense ratios are 0.05% instead of 0.035%! :twisted: We're getting robbed!

With Kearney and a drum Vanguard could probably break the three hundredths of a percent barrier...
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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by littlebird » Thu Aug 29, 2013 9:50 pm

macchiato wrote:The phrase may not be directly applicable, but "don't **** where you eat" comes to mind :)
You may have instinctively hit on the potential trouble spot of having your assets held by someone who is also your creditor. This probably varies by state, but there is a concept called "set off", wherein if someone owes you money ( and is not paying for some reason) and you have some of his money, you may set off the money he owes you by taking the money you're holding for him. Therefore, it's always best to keep your debts and assets at separate institutions.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by vbdoug » Thu Aug 29, 2013 10:13 pm

After abandoning the Schwab card after they gave up the 2% rebate I went to Priceline. Now that Priceline is now underwritten by Barclays I expect they will also eliminate the 2% rate. So I put 3K into Fidelity's Spartan Total Market Index Fund {FSTMX} with an ER of .10 and am now using their AX card. That is twice the ER of VFIAX {the Vanguard 500 Index Fund Admiral} but as long as Fidelity uses this as a marketing tool all is well in my world.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by Bounca » Fri Aug 30, 2013 6:19 am

Vanguard vs Fidelity in my mind is like Wal-Mart vs Target.

Target has nicer amenities, and has weekly specials. However, the customer still pays for these features in the end: everything at Target is Slightly more expensive.
I love it! :D Of all the discussions/comparisons/debates of Vanguard vs. Fidelity, this analogy is whimsical but dead on in my book.

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by HongKonger » Fri Aug 30, 2013 8:48 am

It would be nice if anyone out here offered a cash back credit card. Actually, it would be nice if anyone offered an interest rate below 35%. You guys don't know when you have a good thing!

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Re: Why no Vanguard 2% cash back Visa card?

Post by madbrain » Sat Aug 31, 2013 4:11 am

Bounca wrote:
Vanguard vs Fidelity in my mind is like Wal-Mart vs Target.

Target has nicer amenities, and has weekly specials. However, the customer still pays for these features in the end: everything at Target is Slightly more expensive.
I love it! :D Of all the discussions/comparisons/debates of Vanguard vs. Fidelity, this analogy is whimsical but dead on in my book.
I have compared many grocery items between Walmart and Target and can't say that I have found Target to be "slightly more expensive" . Often they were actually cheaper.
Then there is Costco, which pays their employees living wages with benefits, and is much cheaper than either of them - on bulk quantities, sure, but you don't get any volume discounts at Target or Walmart.

I'm not sure you really want to compare Vanguard to Wal-mart. Wal-mart is also still a for-profit enterprise, unlike Vanguard.
There are too many differences for the analogy to stand, IMO.

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