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Credit card companies are retailers trying to turn a profit. One approach is selling premium cards with more and better benefits or rewards. Should you consider a purchase or do you stay with what you have? That depends on how you use your credit card. The November 8, 2014 Wall Street Journal tries to help answer the question with an article on the new plastic. Some of these cards cost in the range of $400 to $500. If you travel a lot or spend significant money on entertainment and/or dining, you may come out ok, even after the expense of the card. The extra points, rewards and other perks all can contribute to making the decision more palatable. However, note that there are a lot of cards that provide rewards and points without any additional fees. What are the pros and cons to consider? In the third quarter of 2014, 23% of the reward card solicitations were for cards charging an annual fee. For cards charging a fee, the average fee is about $84.00 a year. Before making a purchase, consider your typical charges to a credit card. The most likely beneficiary of a fee card is a frequent traveler. Several of the more expensive cards will offer credits or refunds for airline charges for checking bags. If you have an existing relationship with the card company, you may get a discount on the purchase of a fee card. In many cases, there are incentives in the first few months to use the card and earn “bonus” points. You need to study how points are awarded to be sure that the system fits your travel and spending pattern. The redemption rules should be studied as some cards give you more for your points than others. Here’s what I think: most of us do not need the premium cards, because most of us are not frequent fliers. If you are a traveler, spend the money—I understand that the lounges in the air terminals make a huge difference in your demeanor when there are delays and cancellations. Food and drink and comfortable seating is available and welcome. As always, do your homework and ask for advice when uncertain of your decision.


The New Year is here. What if you made a promise to love your neighbor as yourself? What if you made a vow to give every person you work with or for your best possible performance each day? What if you showed your children how to give thanks for life and love, to forgive those who trespass on us, to love God with all of our heart, mind and soul? What if you taught your loved ones to trust in God’s plan and to be comfortable with life’s challenges, knowing that His touch is going to move us forward? What if we said a prayer each day not only for our own needs, but for the needs of others, that they may also be made whole by and with God’s blessings? What if we celebrate the joy of creation and life each and every day, marveling in the mystery of life? What if we spent more time in conversation and prayer with our Savior? If you did these things, do you think 2015 might be the best year ever? I believe that there is a chance of that. From Isaiah 65: “and it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.” Promises made and promised kept.


Although this information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, it cannot be guaranteed.  This material is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized tax, legal or investment advice.  FSC Securities Corp does not offer tax or legal advice.  Securities, insurance and investment advisory services offered through FSC Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC and a registered investment advisor 3416 North Blvd, Alexandria, LA 71301, (318) 448-3201.  The views expressed are not necessarily the opinion of FSC Securities Corporation.