Canadian banks cutting credit card interest for some clients due to COVID-19
VANCOUVER -- Some major Canadian banks are cutting credit card interest for clients that are facing financial hardship because of COVID-19.
Vancity, a local credit union, announced on April 8 that it would defer minimum payments and drop interest rates entirely - to 0 per cent - for their card holders who are facing financial difficulty because of the pandemic.
In a release on Friday, RBC said it will be by cutting interest by 50 per cent for small business and personal clients who are already deferring minimum payments on their credit cards.
Starting on April 6, clients who qualify will be able to take advantage of the change.
In order to be considered, clients will have to do a financial review with an RBC advisor, and once approved, the 50 per cent difference will be credited to their account.
“Clients are managing their spending as they adjust to new circumstances and, to help them, we have introduced several relief measures to support them in this very difficult time,” Neil McLaughlin, head of personal and commercial banking, said in the release.
The bank is also offering up to six months of mortgage relief and some relief on loans.
CIBC is also reducing credit card interest. In a release on Friday the bank said that clients who are experiencing financial problems and request to skip a payment will get a temporary lower annual rate of 10.99 per cent. That will be retroactively applied to March 15 for those who already received relief.
"By lowering rates, we want to help reduce stress that Canadians are feeling as a result of COVID19 and provide them with additional flexibility for every day purchases," Laura Dottori-Attanasio, the senior executive vice-president of personal and business banking said in the release.
The National Bank of Canada is also dropping rates to 10.9 per cent for their clients who are granted deferrals, as is Desjardins Group.