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Credit Cards

Review: PenFed Launches 1.5% – 2% Power Cash Rewards Credit Card

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

The information related to Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer has been collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

PenFed, a credit union that anyone can join (more on that later) has just introduced a new cash back rewards credit card, PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card. The card pays a high, flat cash back rate and brings a credit union approach to fees (low and not many of them) and simplicity. Here are the details on the cash back that you can earn:

  • Anyone with military service earns 2% cash back through their PenFed HonorsAdvantage on all spending, with no limits or restrictions. That is the highest flat cash back rate in the market.
  • Anyone with a PenFed Access America Checking account (restrictions apply) earns 2% cash back on all spending, with no limits or restrictions. (If you keep $500 in the checking account, there is no fee and you earn 0.20% APY on the money).
  • If you do not have military service or a checking account, you can earn 1.5% unlimited cash back. At 1.5%, the card matches Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card, but it is still beat by Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer.
  • There is a minimum redemption amount of $5 for the cash back that you have earned.
  • There is a bonus offer: get $100 Statement Credit when you spend $1,500 in the first 90 days.

In addition to the cash back, here are some additional features:

  • Chip with pin functionality: if you travel overseas, you might find chip + signature limiting. For example, trying to use a card with only signature functionality at kiosks across Europe (like the London Underground) can be challenging.
  • No annual fee and no foreign transaction fee.
  • APR range of 11.74% - 17.99% Variable. If you have excellent credit, the APR at Citi (on the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer) is 15.49% - 25.49% (Variable). For people who revolve occasionally, this could be a better option. (Although our advice remains to pay your balance in full and on time. If you need to borrow money, personal loans and balance transfers remain cheaper options).

Our Verdict

Best Cash Back Credit Card for Military: 2% is the gold standard for a flat rate cash back credit card, and PenFed delivers for men and women who have served. This is better than any competing flat-rate cash back credit cards because of the lower APR and lack of foreign transaction fees.

Best Cash Back Credit Card for Spending Abroad: If you use Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer, you would be hit with a foreign transaction fee of 3%. So, you would earn 2% but be forced to pay 3% in fees. Before this card, Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card was our top choice because of a 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase, every day and no foreign transaction fees. PenFed’s PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card now wins because (a) if you put $500 into a PenFed Access American Checking account you can earn 2% on this card, and (b) the card offers chip and pin functionality. If you spend $1,000 overseas this year, you would pay $10 to Citi, (2% cash back – 3% fees = -1%), would earn $15 with Capital One and would earn $20 with PenFed.

Tie: Best Flat-Rate Cash Back Credit Card: With both Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer and PenFed you can earn up to 2%. Each card has its own unique differences, which is why they are tied for best flat-rate card in the market.

  • PenFed: You need to join the credit union, open a checking account and fund the account with $500 (or sign up for direct deposit) to ensure you get the full 2% and avoid fees. Financially it will make sense, but there are a number of obstacles to get the full rewards (unless you are military).
  • Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer: It is easy to apply and get the card (no credit union membership or Citi checking account required). Earn 2% cash back on purchases: 1% when you buy plus 1% as you pay..

There are still options to earn higher cash back rates in certain categories. You can find the best cash back credit cards by every category here. For example, with the Fort Knox Federal Credit Union Visa® Platinum Card, you can Unlimited 5% cash back on gas and 1% cash back on all retail purchases.

If you want to learn more or apply, you can visit PenFed’s website.

PenFed Power Cash Rewards Visa Signature® Card

Requirements To Earn 2%

Here are the details on how to ensure you get the full 2% earn rate:

Military: You are eligible to earn 2% if the primary or joint applicant is in military service, the National Guard, the Reserves, an honorary discharged veteran or retired from the United States military. Military members receive the 2% upon completion of the application – no further action is required.

Checking Account: If you do not meet the military requirements, you would need to open a checking account with PenFed. The account is called the “AccessAmerica Checking Account.” There are some decent benefits to the account (you can earn 0.20% APY interest on balances up to $20,000 and 0.50% APY on balances between $20,000 and $50,000). If you shift your monthly direct deposit of at least $500 to this account, you will not have a monthly fee. However, if you do not want to shift your direct deposit, you can deposit $500 and keep it there to meet the required minimum balance. This is actually the easiest way to earn the 2%, cash back rate and, given the 0.20% interest on the checking account, it can be financially worthwhile.

Join the Credit Union: There are multiple ways to join the credit union. If you are active or retired military, you are eligible to join for free. If you work for the US government or are a relative of a member, you can also join for free. But don’t worry if you are unable to meet those requirements. You might belong to an eligible organization (check here). You can also join an organization to become eligible for credit union membership. You can pay $17.00 (one time and non-refundable) to join Voices for America’s Troops or the National Military Family Association. By supporting a good cause, you become eligible for credit union membership. In addition to the credit card, PenFed is known for low rates on auto loans and mortgages.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Nick Clements
Nick Clements |

Nick Clements is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Nick at [email protected]

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Credit Cards, Reviews

Brex Card for Ecommerce Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

If you’re looking for a corporate card that doesn’t require a personal credit guarantee, and your company makes at least $100,000 in monthly sales, the Brex For Ecommerce could be a good fit. It charges a $0 annual fee and offers 60 days to repay what you charge interest-free.

This card is issued by Emigrant Bank, Member FDIC, the same issuer that offers the Brex For Startups, which aims to offer credit to businesses that might struggle to access traditional corporate credit cards. The Brex For Ecommerce also targets a unique niche; it’s seeking to provide flexibility and convenience for online businesses that have a short-term financing need.

Let’s take a closer look at the details so you can decide if this card is right for your business.

Where the Brex For Ecommerce stands out

No personal guarantee. Most small business credit cards require a personal credit guarantee — meaning that you, the business owner, are ultimately responsible for your business’ debt. And if you fall behind on payments, your personal credit score will get dinged. But there’s no personal liability involved for the Brex For Ecommerce.

Potentially high credit limit. Your credit limit can be up to 75% of your projected monthly sales, and the maximum credit limit is $5 million.

No interest for 60 days. If you need a bit of flexibility to manage your expenses, this card offers it. You have 60 days from the transaction date to pay off what you charge to this card, and you won’t accrue interest charges like you would with a normal credit card as the balance is due in full after 60 days.

Additional benefits

Build business credit. If you want to build your business credit history, this is a good card to have. Brex partners with credit companies Dun & Bradstreet and Experian. Building business credit can help you down the road if your company needs to apply for loans or other financial products.

Partner discounts. When you get the Brex For Ecommerce, you can get exclusive discounts on Google Ads, Amazon Web Services, WeWork, Zendesk, Sendgrid, Salesforce, Instacart, Postscript and more.

Virtual cards. If you’re approved for the Brex For Ecommerce, you’ll get a virtual card instantly. You can also issue virtual cards to company employees and set spending limits.

Where the Brex For Ecommerce falls short

No rewards. Unfortunately, this card doesn’t offer rewards. If you’re looking to earn cash back or travel miles, you’ll need to look elsewhere.

Read: Best Small Business Credit Cards

Can’t carry a balance. This is a charge card. You have 60 days to pay off charges, and when they’re due they’re due in full.

Barriers to applying. There is a minimum money sales volume of $100,000 required to be eligible for this card. Some small businesses likely won’t meet that threshold, and may be better suited for a traditional small business credit card.

In addition to the income requirement, your business must have been in operation for at least one year in order to be eligible for the Brex For Ecommerce.

Finally, if your business is structured as a sole proprietorship, you won’t be able to get this card.

Compare it with the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

If  you’re a small business looking to earn rewards and carry a balance longer than 60 days, the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card might be a better option.

Here’s how the two cards compare:

 Brex For EcommerceInk Business Cash℠ Credit Card
RewardsNoneEarn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on internet, cable and phone services each account anniversary year. Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Earn 1% cash back on all other card purchases with no limit to the amount you can earn.
Sign-up bonus75,000 in Brex Rewards points upon signup and waived card fees for life (equal to $750+ value)*Earn $500 bonus cash back after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Purchase APRN/AIntro 0% for 12 Months on purchases. After that a 14.74% - 20.74% Variable APR applies.
Balance transfer APRN/A14.74% - 20.74% Variable
Annual fee$0$0
Foreign transaction feeNone3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

The Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card also offers 0% for 12 Months on purchases for a year. This is helpful if you want to make a large purchase and pay it off over time without accruing interest charges.

There’s no doubt that the Brex For Ecommerce is good for filling the niche its aimed at. However, only you will be able to determine whether that niche is the best for your business needs.

The bottom line

If your ecommerce business brings in enough in monthly sales to be eligible for the Brex For Ecommerce, and you won’t need to carry a balance for an extended period of time, this card is a strong choice. However, if your business doesn’t meet the $100,000 monthly sales threshold — or if you want rewards or an intro APR of 0% for 12 Months on purchases (after that a 14.74% - 20.74% Variable APR applies) — the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card is a good alternative to consider.

If you like what Brex offers but the Brex For Ecommerce doesn’t quite fit your business, you might have better luck with the Brex For Startups. Its billing cycle is stricter, with what you’ve charged to the card being deducted from your bank account every month, but it has a lower barrier to entry since you can apply if your startup has at least $50,000 in the bank. It also offers generous rewards, as long as you show Brex it’s your business’s exclusive corporate card.

The information related to the Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card has been independently collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Glen Luke Flanagan
Glen Luke Flanagan |

Glen Luke Flanagan is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Glen Luke here

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Best of, Credit Cards

Longest 0% Purchase Credit Card Offers From Banks & Credit Unions – December 2019

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership. This site may be compensated through a credit card partnership.

0% purchase credit card
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If you’re about to make a big purchase that you need time to pay off, using a 0% introductory purchase offer on a credit card could be the cheapest way to spread the payment out over time.

  • You can currently find 0% deals for as long as 18 months with no fees, but since rates after the intro period are high, only use these deals if you’re sure you can handle paying off the debt before the period is up.
  • When searching for 0% purchase cards, make sure you select a card that waives interest. Far too many cards, especially those offered by retailers only defer the interest which means you can get a nasty surprise when the intro period is up.

Below we list the longest 0% purchase credit cards broken up by length of 0% intro period from our database of over 3,000 credit card products from banks and credit unions:

18 Months 0% Intro APR

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

The U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card offers a long 0%* intro for 18 billing cycles on Purchases* for purchases and an 0%* intro for 18 billing cycles on Balance Transfers* (after, 13.99% - 24.99%* (Variable) APR). However, this card offers few other benefits. There is no rewards program, but there is cellphone protection that can reimburse you for damage or theft up to $600 (with a $25 deductible), for up to two claims ($1,200) per 12-month period when you pay your cellphone bill with your card.

TruWest Visa® Signature Card

TruWest Visa® Signature Card

The 0% introductory APR for 18 months on purchases and balance transfers for the TruWest Visa® Signature Card is one of the highest for a credit union. It also has a very low ongoing APR of 9.40%-10.40% Variable after the intro period ends. This card is restricted to people who live, work, own a business or go to school in select Arizona and Texas communities or who work for select employers. You can read more about membership eligibility on TruWest’s website. You can earn 1 point per dollar spent, and up to 10 extra points per dollar spent by taking advantage of bonus point offers with the Get Extra Points Rewards Program. You can also earn up to 1.5% cash back with the trurewards program.

TruWest Visa Platinum Card

TruWest Visa Platinum Card

Another card from TruWest that offers a long intro period is the TruWest Visa Platinum Card, with 0% introductory APR for 18 months on purchases. Again, this card is only available to TruWest Credit Union members. This card has one of the lowest starting variable APR ranges at 7.45% - 21.45% Variable, which is beneficial for anyone who qualifies for the low rate and may carry a balance after the intro period ends (though we recommend paying off debt beforehand).

TruWest Platinum Points Visa Rewards Card

TruWest Platinum Points Visa Rewards Card

The TruWest Platinum Points Visa Rewards Card has a competitive 0% introductory APR for 18 months on all purchases and balance transfers. After the intro period, the purchase APR is 9.40% - 16.40% Variable. As with the other TruWest cards, this one is only available to members. You can benefit from a rewards program where you Automatically earn up to 1 point for every $1 you spend, and earn up to 10 extra points per dollar spent. Also, earn up to 1.5% cash back with the TruRewards program. However, this is a low rewards rate compared to other 0% intro purchase cards on this list.

Wells Fargo Platinum card

Wells Fargo Platinum card

The Wells Fargo Platinum card has a long period for you to pay off debt with an intro of 0% for 18 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers. Following the intro period, the APR on purchases and balance transfers will be 16.99%-26.49% (Variable). Besides the promotional APR, this card is fairly basic. It does have one other notable perk: You can receive up to $600 of cellphone protection (subject to $25 deductible) against eligible reasons when you pay your monthly cellphone bill with your card.*

15 Months 0% Intro APR

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express offers an intro 0% for 15 Months on purchases and balance transfers. After that, your APR will be 14.49% - 25.49% (Variable). This card is a great choice for people who want to take advantage of the 0% intro periods and earn rewards. With the cash back program, you can earn 2x points at US supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1x), 1x points on other purchases.

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

The Chase Freedom Unlimited® provides a 0% Intro APR for 15 months
on purchases and a 0% Intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers — that is shorter than other flat-rate cash back cards in this list. After those 15 months, purchases are subject to a standard APR of 16.49% - 25.24% Variable. With the cash back program, you can earn a 1.5% cash back offer.

Chase Freedom®

Chase Freedom®

The Chase Freedom® offers a 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months and a 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months. The card also offers a cash back program that is great for those looking to maximize cash back in bonus categories. You can Earn 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate. Enjoy new 5% categories every 3 months. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. After the promotional period, the purchase APR is 16.49% - 25.24% Variable.

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

APPLY NOW Secured

on American Express’s secure website

Terms Apply |  Rates & Fees


The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers an introductory 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. After that, your APR will be 14.49%-25.49% Variable. There is also a cash back program — earn 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%). 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores. 1% cash back on other purchases.

PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card

PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card

The PNC Core® Visa® Credit Card is a basic card that offers Introductory 0% APR on purchases for the first 15 billing cycles following account opening, then 11.74%-21.74% Variable APR, based on your credit. There is no rewards program or noteable perks. However, there is U.S.-based customer service available 7 days a week.

Truly Simple® Card from Fifth Third Bank

Truly Simple® Card from Fifth Third Bank

This card offers a decent 0% introductory APR for the first 15 billing cycles after your account is opened on both purchases and balance transfers, however this card is restricted to residents of Ohio, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia. There is also no penalty APR if you miss a payment. The standard APR of 13.99% - 24.99% Variable applies after the intro period ends.

BB&T Bright Credit Card

BB&T Bright Credit Card

The BB&T Bright Credit Card offers a good intro period from a community bank at 0% intro for 15 Months on purchases and balance transfers (12.74% - 21.74% Variable APR after). Note that this card is restricted to residents of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, North Carolina, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, D.C. and West Virginia.

Visa® Platinum Preferred Rewards from APG FCU

Visa® Platinum Preferred Rewards from APG FCU

This card offers a competitive 0% intro APR on purchases and qualified balance transfers compared to other credit unions at 0% intro APR for 15 months (12.49% - 17.99% Variable APR after). To qualify for this card you need to live, work, worship, attend school, or volunteer in Harford or Cecil County or certain areas in Middle River, Maryland. There is a subpar rewards program where you can earn one point for every dollar spent on purchases.

KeyBank Latitude® Credit Card

KeyBank Latitude® Credit Card

The KeyBank Latitude® Credit Card has a decent intro period for purchases at 0.00% Introductory APR for the first 15 monthly billing cycles. It also has a decent intro period for balance transfers at 0.00% Introductory APR for the first 15 monthly billing cycles. After the intro period ends, 11.99% - 21.99% Variable APR applies based on creditworthiness. This card is restricted to people who live in Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Vermont and Washington. There is no rewards program.

Chase Slate®

The Chase Slate® has a decent 0% Intro APR on Purchases for 15 months, then 16.74% - 25.49% Variable APR, but you can find other cards with longer periods, and/or rewards. This card is predominantly known for its balance transfer offer where you get 0% Intro APR on Balance Transfers for 15 months and an Intro $0 on transfers made within 60 days of account opening. After that: Either $5 or 5%, whichever is greater.

Deferred versus Waived Interest

Not all 0% offers are created equally. Some credit card companies offer “deferred” interest, whereas others off “waived” interest.

Let’s take a simple example. You spend $1,000 on a credit card with an APR of 18%. You will make payments of $75 every month. There is a special offer that gives you 0% interest for 12 months. On “Credit Card A” interest is deferred. On “Credit Card B” it is waived. After making 12 payments of $75, the remaining balance in month 13 would be $100.

Credit Card A: Deferred Interest

With a “deferred” interest offer, the bank does not forgive the monthly interest accrual. Instead, the bank just keeps track of the interest that would have accrued. If you do not pay the balance in full during the promotional period, you will get retroactively charged the interest at a high interest rate. In the example above, you would be charged approximately $117 in month 13. (I use “approximately” because credit card companies have slightly different ways of calculating and charging interest. But it is safe to assume that you would be charged more than $100 of interest on your remaining $100 balance.)

Credit Card B: Waived Interest

Waived interest is very different. For every month of the promotional period, the credit card company actually forgives the interest. There will never be a retroactive catch up after the promotional period ends. In our example, you would only be charged $3.26 of interest in month 13, compared to more than $100 in the deferred example.

Deferred interest products are surprisingly common. If you are being offered 0% financing by a retailer, you are probably being offered a deferred interest product.

How To Qualify For A 0% Purchase Credit Card

In order to qualify for a 0% intro purchase credit card, you will need to have good credit. If your credit score is above 700, you are highly likely to be approved by one of the issuers. If your score is between 650 and 700, you still have a good chance.

With a credit score below 650, it is highly unlikely that you would be approved, though you may want to check to see if you are pre-qualified for a card before applying. Many of the banks let you check to see what deals they are specifically targeting to you, and you can see a list of them here. Checking what you’re pre-qualified for won’t show up on your credit report or score.

In addition to your credit score, the credit card company will want to ensure that you are employed. And most credit card companies will look at your debt burden.

If your debt burden is more than 50%, it is unlikely that you will be approved.

The lower your debt burden, the better your chances. You calculate your debt burden by dividing the monthly payments on your credit report (which would include your mortgage, auto loans, student loans, personal loans and credit cards) by your monthly paycheck before taxes are taken out.

When Is A Personal Loan Better?

There is no lower interest rate than 0%. So, if you are able to use a 0% credit card to make a purchase, that is your best bet. However, there are a few circumstances where a personal loan might be a better option:

  • Your credit score is too low for a 0% offer. Personal loan companies are offering increasingly competitive interest rates, especially for people with lower credit scores.
  • You need to borrow money for a big cash expense. For example, you might need to pay a contractor who does not accept credit cards. If you need cash, a personal loan is always a better deal than a credit card.
  • You don’t trust yourself with credit cards. Some people feel nervous with credit cards. You might be tempted to spend more than you want. Or, you might be tempted to only pay the minimum due, extending the repayment term. A personal loan can be an easy way to borrow a set amount of money for a set period of time.

If you want to consider a personal loan, you can compare and apply using our personal loan comparison tool. You can check your interest rate and see if you are approved without hurting your credit score at most lenders.

The information related to Wells Fargo Platinum card, The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express, Chase Freedom Unlimited®, Chase Freedom® and Chase Slate® has been independently collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

MagnifyMoney
MagnifyMoney |

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