New laws aimed at cutting credit card debt passed

Aussie consumers looking to compare credit cards could find themselves better protected from "tick 'n' flick" deals from now on.

New laws were passed by the lower house yesterday (June 22nd 2011), which will see letters sent out by banks offering increased credit limits – otherwise known as tick 'n' flick campaigns – outlawed, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Under the terms of the legislation, service providers will also be obliged to offer new customers better information on fees and charges, as the federal government looks to increase transparency throughout the industry.

The bill will also prevent banks from issuing extortionate penalties to people who have surpassed their limit, which could help more Aussies cut down on their credit card debt.

"It means an end to most credit limit overdraw fees and significant savings for all Australians," assistant treasurer Bill Shorten told the publication.

Last week, the Reserve Bank of Australia revealed that overall credit card fees dished out in 2010 were lower than the previous year.

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