• Average consumer credit card interest rate: 17.99%
  • Average small business credit card interest rate: 16.83%
  • Average retail store credit card interest rate: 24.46%

Analysis

In the approximately 8 months since our last report, the average credit card rate on mass market consumer credit cards has risen almost a full point — to 17.99% from 17.03%.

Credit card rates are at multi-year highs, due in part to rising interest rates overall and in part to active re-pricing by major credit card issuers throughout the past two years.

Credit cards that do not offer rewards tend to offer better interest rates. Our rule-of-thumb is that a rewards card will generally charge 2 percentage points more on average than a card with no rewards. Our current calculations roughly bear this out:

  • Consumer credit cards that do not offer rewards have an average interest rate of 16.88%
  • Consumer credit cards with rewards programs have an average interest rate of 18.83%


Retail store credit cards continue to be a terrible deal for consumers that carry balances from month to month, with a handful of cards even eclipsing the 30% rate mark.

As noted above, small business credit cards can be a better deal than consumer credit cards in terms of interest rate, but the standards for approval are often higher, meaning those without excellent credit histories could be shut out of business cards altogether.

Contact adam@proudmoney.com for any questions on card rates or general credit card industry trends.

Prior rate averages:

  • December 2017: 17.03% consumer (16.01% non-reward, 17.80% reward), 16.08% business, 23.76% retail