House Approves Credit Card Bill

The House Thursday approved a bill that would curb what supporters described as predatory credit card practices and eliminate spikes in credit card interest rates.

The House approved the package 357-70.

Among other things, the plan would ban what's known as "double-cycle billing" as well as retroactive rate hikes. The measure would also require credit card firms to give consumers a 45-day warning before they raise interest rates.

If they become law, the new measures won't take effect for a year, except for a requirement that customers get 45 days' notice before their interest rates are increased. That would take effect in 90 days.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., indicated that she hoped that "the big vote in the House will create even bigger momentum as we go to the Senate."

President Obama has indicated he would sign the bill.

The average home that has a credit card carries more than $10,000 in debt. Credit card debt has increased markedly over the past quarter-century.