The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a report showing that credit card issuers collectively charged $12 billion in late fees in 2020.  The report makes several findings, including:

  1. Many of the major issuers charge the maximum late fee allowed under the immunity provisions set by the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in 2010.
  2. Subprime cards and private label cards are particularly susceptible to late fee charges.
  3. Late fee volume fell when stimulus check arrived in 2020 and 2021, particularly for household with lower credit scores.
  4. Low-income areas, those with high shares of Black Americans, and lower economic mobility all bear more of the late fee burden.

Press Release