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Credit Card Strategies When Unemployment Looms

In a weak economy, the potential for unemployment is ever-present. Fortunately, not every job loss comes as a complete surprise. In fact, employees often have advanced notice before they actually become jobless. This allows credit card users to take pre-emptive actions to ensure their access to credit and the best rates.

What to do when you might lose your job

Whether an employee has been given an official notice of being laid off, or they are just able to read the writing on the wall, it is important to utilize that information. Since it can be very difficult to obtain a new credit card while unemployed, workers who feel that their job is threatened should immediately apply for any new cards that they were hoping to receive.

When choosing a new card, consider a product with a promotional financing offer. The best cards will offer 0% interest rate on both new purchases as well as balance transfers. This will allow cardholders to save money on interest in the event that they are unable to pay their balance in full while they are between jobs.

For example, the Citi Simplicity card offers an introductory 0% rate on balance transfers and new purchases for 18 months. It also has no annual fee, late fees or penalty interest rates. Furthermore, it does not offer any rewards. This is just as well as travel and cash back rewards should be one’s last consideration as they stare down the prospect of joblessness.

The threat of unemployment is not an easy thing to live with. But by taking steps to ensure access to credit cards and promotional financing offers, employees can put themselves in a better position to withstand the financial stress of being between jobs.

Editor's Note: This content is not provided by Citi. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed here are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the Citi or any of the other companies whose products are featured in this content.

About the author

Jason Steele

Jason Steele is a freelance journalist specializing in personal finance and travel and is recognized as an expert in credit cards. He is a regular contributor to many of the top personal finance sites such as Wise Bread and Money Talks News. His work has been frequently carried on mainstream news outlets such as MSN Money, Yahoo, Finance, and Business insider.

Jason lives in Denver Colorado with his wife and two daughters.

– has written 343 posts.

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