Although the summer of 2012 is starting to cool down, the market for credit card balance transfers remains hot. August’s average 0% balance transfer terms continued to hold steady with average 0% rates lasting a very generous 13 months and average fees hoovering around multi-year lows.
The combination of these two factors makes this an ideal time for consumers to consider the benefits of transferring debt from high interest credit cards via balance transfers.
Market Leading 0% APR Balance Transfer Offers
Four cards remain perched at the top of the market when it comes to balance transfer deals. The first two – the Citi Diamond Preferred and Simplicity cards – offer 18 months of interest free financing on balance transfers while charging a low 3% balance transfer fee. These cards also charge no interest for 18 months on new purchases as well, making these the longest lasting 0% credit cards presently available.
The Discover More card also has a limited time offer featuring the same 18 month 0% period on balance transfers, but this card only offers a 0% APR for six months on new purchases. Consumers who think they will be making new purchases with their card should thus avoid this offer.
For most consumers, however, the Chase Slate Card remains the best offer on the market. Although it only features 15 months of interest free financing on new purchases and balance transfers, it remains the only card on the market that charges no balance transfer fees. This can save consumers $3 for every $100 transferred, thus increasing overall balance transfer savings.
Consumers can learn more about the cards mentioned above by visiting the 0% APR balance transfer comparison section of SmartBalanceTransfers.com here or by clicking an orange button in the card information tables below.
Other Above Average Offers
The SBT index also covers several other cards that offer 0% balance transfer terms that exceed the 13.1% average duration. For example, the popular Chase Freedom rewards card offers 15 months of promotional financing, as does the Discover Open Road, US Bank Platinum card, and the Travelocity rewards card from Barclays Bank
Bringing Up The Rear
Wells Fargo offers a trio of products that only feature the minimum of six months of interest free financing on balance transfers. These cards are their Wells Fargo Rewards, Home Rebate, and Cashback cards. Finally, Bank of America continues to be the outlier by offering balance transfers on three of their products with a 4% balance transfer fee which is 33% higher than most current offers.
As the Federal Reserve continues to abstain from taking any action, we do not expect to see the market change precipitously in the near future. Nevertheless, any dramatic movement of the markets, or a change in the disposition of the Fed, is likely to have an effect on the terms of these offers.
For more information on current offers, please see our ranking of 2012′s best balance transfer offers here.