Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

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CardinalRule
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Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by CardinalRule » Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:42 pm

Saw this message in my inbox today at fidelity.com. I guess I had chucked the letter without reading it. Is this true, about it not having an impact on one's credit history? I have had this "gold" card for seemingly forever.

American Express recently sent you a letter about the decision to discontinue the Fidelity American Express Card program. You will not be able to use the card after April 8. The cancellation of the card will have no impact to your Fidelity brokerage account or credit history.

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Please update any recurring payments or automatic bill payments associated with the card, and notify any additional users of the change. Learn more about these changes, other cards, and cash management products.

TravelGeek
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TravelGeek » Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:50 pm

That Gold card is one of my oldest cards. I got the email, but no letter (yet; Informed Delivery tells me there is a letter from Amex in the mail today).

I think the main action item for those with no other Amex card that feeds into the Membership Rewards account is to either use the remaining points or get a new card that can be associated with that account. I have a Plat card, so no urgent need for me to do anything (but I was considering closing the Plat account, so one of these days I do need to review my options).

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flamesabers
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by flamesabers » Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:56 pm

I think it depends. Will Fidelity allow you to convert this card into a different credit card? If so, this won't have an impact on your credit history assuming Fidelity doesn't report this conversion as the opening of a new account.

If however Fidelity is closing your card with no recourse, it may impact your credit history in the long-term. If this is the oldest (or one of the older) cards you have, your AAOA may decrease once the card falls off of your credit report. On the other hand, if you have a fairly thick credit file, the closure of this account probably won't have a noticeable impact on your credit report.

TravelGeek
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TravelGeek » Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:29 pm

So yeah, the letter in the mail today was from Amex announcing that they will cancel the card.

I am surprised that they aren't trying to retain their customers by offering to switch them to a similar product.

Given that the card is a charge card, I am not sure how much of an impact the cancellation will have on my credit score. Since I don't anticipate needing any credit, I am not too concerned, though.

TBillT
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TBillT » Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:12 am

I have saved up a lot of AMEX points dreaming that is for a Maui vacation.
Sounds like we could open a new AMEX account to take the points?
But maybe I should just transfer the points to Hilton...not sure.
Had this AMEX card petty much my entire adult life.

TravelGeek
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TravelGeek » Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:08 am

TBillT wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:12 am

But maybe I should just transfer the points to Hilton...not sure.
You’d be getting 2 Hilton Honors points for each MR point.

Using https://thepointsguy.com/2017/10/octobe ... aluations/ to get valuations:

A MR point is worth about 1.9 cents.

A Hilton point is worth about 0.6 cents. So 1.2 cents per MR point after the conversion.

So a loss of value, but if you actually get to use the points (instead of saving them forever) it might be worth it,

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flamesabers
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by flamesabers » Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:02 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:29 pm
I am surprised that they aren't trying to retain their customers by offering to switch them to a similar product.
My thoughts exactly.
TravelGeek wrote:
Tue Jan 16, 2018 9:29 pm
Since I don't anticipate needing any credit, I am not too concerned, though.
One possible reason to be concerned is if you're planning on retiring soon. Based on what I've read on this forum, it seems once you retired and no longer have an earned income, it can be a bit harder to apply for credit cards (or credit cards will suitable credit limits) or other forms of credit.

informal guide
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by informal guide » Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:14 pm

I am another long time Fidelity/Amex Gold card holder who got the letter. These days I use the AMEX Card primarily to get cash an doccasionally for a charge.

My guess is that Fidelity would not let AMEX cross-market a replacement card, either because they wanted to get folks to use their VISA debit card or perhaps because the credit card contract with Elan Financial Services (owned by US Bank, I think) prohibited it. I guess another possibility is that American Express believes they will make a small windfall by folks with membership rewards points who don't redeem them - -Amex gets relieved of the points liability.

Just as i am writing this, Fidelity is now calling me about this (from its local investment center). Their first offer is a debit card - -not very attractive unless I can limit purchase capability, given that this is a margin account with significant security balances. Because of questions, I got transferred to someone who is knowledgeable. I am not sure what i am going ot do at this point

TravelGeek
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TravelGeek » Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:21 pm

informal guide wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:14 pm
I am not sure what i am going ot do at this point
Frankly, this card has been on my "should probably just close it" list for years. So I am not too upset about it. My Plat fee is coming due in a few days, and I decided to stick with it for another year and re-evaluate during that time.

Jags4186
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:27 pm

It shouldn't affect your credit history because closed accounts stay on your credit report for 10 years. In 10 years when it falls off, it would negatively affect your average age of accounts. Not something I'd worry about TBH.

Make sure you open up a no annual fee AMEX Everyday card BEFORE the cancellation of you current card in order to keep your points. https://www.americanexpress.com/us/cred ... ottom-Pos3

If you have any interest in using my referral link please PM me and I would be happy to send it to you.
Last edited by Jags4186 on Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:29 pm, edited 2 times in total.

TravelGeek
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Re: Fidelity American Express Card discontinuance

Post by TravelGeek » Wed Jan 17, 2018 2:28 pm

flamesabers wrote:
Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:02 pm
One possible reason to be concerned is if you're planning on retiring soon. Based on what I've read on this forum, it seems once you retired and no longer have an earned income, it can be a bit harder to apply for credit cards (or credit cards will suitable credit limits) or other forms of credit.
I heard the same, but no experience (yet). I am trying to position myself to have the cards I expect to want to keep for the foreseeable future. This one really isn't on the list.

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