Credit card rates still high?

In the past year or so, consumers have seen rates for a number of different credit products fall, in some cases significantly. However, this isn't true of credit card rates, but there's a good reason why.

Interest rates for consumer loan products like mortgages and auto financing have fallen appreciably but credit card APRs have only edged down slightly, and many consumers are wondering why, according to a report from Smartmoney. But the reason is that unlike traditional loans, which are typically collateralized as a means of reducing lender risk, credit card issuers typically have very little recourse for reclaiming their lost funds in the event of delinquency and default.

"The lender has to be compensated for the risk they're assuming," Keith Leggett, vice president and senior economist at the American Bankers Association, told the news site.

One way consumers can potentially reduce the amount they pay in interest is to improve their credit rating. By checking their credit reports for any errors, they may be able to identify unfair or inaccurate entries that are lowering their credit scores.