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The miles and points game doesn’t operate in isolation. When we talk about miles and points earning, a lot of it is often contingent on getting approved for lucrative welcome bonuses. As markets tighten, banks are bound to increase restrictions on lending. They’re bound to impose more guardrails in order to minimize their risk. Chase is no different. As per many reports, Chase is already tightening up when it comes to issuing credit card approvals for many of their cards. This isn’t surprising given how their CEO recently opined that we’re in a ‘bad recession’.

Chase Credit Card Approvals

Multiple reports on reddit point out that Chase is tightening credit card approvals for many of their credit card products. Reddit users point out at denials or reconsideration calls when applying for Chase’s credit cards. As per this Reddit thread, Chase denied applicants for these cards:

  • Chase Freedom Unlimited
  • World of Hyatt
  • Chase Ink Business Unlimited
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve

While the details for the denial aren’t as clear, one commenter posted that ‘too many inquiries’ was the reason stated by Chase. In the same discussion, other commenters point out how they applied for Amex cards and got approved for them. You can read the entire thread here.

Chase Earnings Call

In a post last week, I highlighted how banks’ own financial reporting is indicating a general tightening of markets. It’s no surprise that Chase is putting more barriers before approving people for credit cards. On the most recent earnings call, here’s what JP Morgan Chase CEO Dimon said:

When we get to the end of the second quarter, we’ll know exactly what happened in the second quarter. We know – you got to respect the credit card delinquencies and charges will go up though we’ve seen very little of it so far. But, in the second quarter, you’ll see more of it.

You can read the full report here. Given these public comments as well as Q1 financials, it’s no surprise that Chase is taking a conservative approach. Many lenders could simply adopt a similar approach and wait and watch until Q2 ends.

The Pundit’s Mantra

Over the last few weeks, banks have reacted to the economic slowdown. As expected, they’re trying to limit their risk exposure. In the short term, I won’t be surprised if this trend of tightening approvals continues. In the meanwhile, banks could be switching to alternate methods and sending out targeted offers to customers they wish to acquire.

As I pointed out in this post, I’m planning to go lean and wait as the situation unfolds. I have enough miles and points to book my next trip. Hence, in the short term, I’m limiting my annual fees. By not applying for cards in the short run, I hope I’m also avoiding any undue attention to my accounts or activity.

What is your credit card application strategy looking like in the short term? Have you faced any hurdles in getting approved for a credit card recently? Tell us in the comments section.


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The information on this blog is meant for information purposes only and doesn't constitute personal finance advice. Please consult a licensed professional for advice pertaining to your situation.