What is a credit card?
The Bankrate.com financial term of the day is: "credit card."
If you have credit cards, or even if you don't, you probably take them for granted. But do you really know what a credit card is? What makes a credit card more than just any old piece of plastic is the magnetic stripe on the back. That stripe holds data to identify you and allow you to pay for goods and services using the card. You agree to pay back the card's issuer at a later date. The amount of credit you can get with the card and your interest rate for repaying the money are determined by your income and your credit report. The first bank credit card was issued by Franklin National Bank in New York in 1951.
A credit card is a complex piece of plastic that operates on a simple concept: You should be able to buy things today and pay for them tomorrow -- with interest.
To find a credit card that has what you're looking for, visit the credit cards section at Bankrate.com.
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You go to buy a car. You have cash or financing in hand, but the dealer says, "Sorry, federal law requires a credit check. The Patriot Act, you know."
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