A letter from the Co-operative Bank dropped on the mat the other day about a credit card I’ve held with them for donkey’s years. I’ve always had a soft spot for the good old co-op. It’s a movement with a long and laudable tradition of using the clout of collective ownership to deliver goods and services fairly, transparently and equitably. So. What does the letter say? I quote:
“As a responsible lender we have recently reviewed your credit card account and have noted you do not regularly use the full limit available to you.
Having an unused credit limit on a credit card account registered in your name can negatively affect your credit score; as such we are planning to reduce your limit in line with your previous spending.”
It’s a topsy-turvy world when your credit worthiness is determined by how much debt you have to juggle. It’s even worse when the Co-operative Bank encourages its customers to pile on the debt in an attempt to reverse its own well-documented slide into ruin. The whole point of a co-operative society is that it’s supposed to do things, you know, differently. What’s laughable about the letter is that I only use my account to pay a small quarterly premium for a life insurance policy. If they really wanted to match my limit to actual spend, I’d have a credit limit of only £3. It would be more honest (and, perhaps, closer to their founding principles) if they just admitted that they want to close my account because they’re not making any money out of me. Now that would be worth the price of a stamp.