The FTC, as required by FACTA, released a new study today of credit report accuracy which found that 26% of participants had at least one error in their credit files. Big shock. Even the CDIA, the trade organization for the national credit bureaus, admits that at least 19% of consumer reports have erroneous information.
It would have been awesome if FACTA had resulted in something better than requiring the FTC to issue reports telling us what we already know.
Few things entertain me more than press releases from data cartels.
This past September, Experian released its third annual State of Credit report (eye roll), the cover of which boldly lists the top 10 cities with the highest and lowest credit scores. Then a few days ago, not to be outdone, Trans Union released a separate report which claimed to reveal the U.S. Metro Areas with the highest and lowest credit scores.
The problem is that the two lists don’t match, even though both claim to be based on Vantage Scores (the credit score jointly developed by Experian and Trans Union to fight the draconian dominance of another data cartel—the FICO score).
My favorite discrepancy, for pure irony if nothing else, is how the two reports present Las Vegas. The Experian report glorifies Las Vegas for being the “most improved” city with an average Vantage score of 714, while the Trans Union report frowns on the Las Vegas-Paradise metro area for having an average Vantage score of only 650, the sixth-lowest average in the whole country.
I guess the Trans Union statisticians don’t follow the Experian statisticians on Twitter. Or maybe the issue is the tiny footnote in the Experian report explaining that (despite having access to tens of millions of credit files) its data are based on a measly sample size of “less than 1000.”
Maintaining great credit is hard work and no laughing matter. If you’re rebuilding your credit, it can be downright discouraging at times. So we thought an occasional post looking at the humorous side of credit and money might provide some comic stress relief and help keep things in perspective.
Here’s our first installment.
One reason you might have bad credit
I lent a friend of mine ten thousand dollars for plastic surgery and now I don’t know what he looks like.
– Emo Philips
You know you’re credit is bad when…
I’ve got really bad credit. I just got turned down for a magazine subscription.
– Jesse Popp
Having good credit is not always what you hoped for
A man asked a fairy to make him desirable and irresistible to all women. She turned him into a credit card.
Happy New Year. Fair Isaac Corporation, the company behind the FICO score, officially announced today that it will be relocating its world headquarters from Minneapolis to San Jose, California.
According to the company, the primary reason for the move is access to the larger talent pool in Silicon Valley.
There are two ways to view this announcement. One way is to buy the company’s explanation. I mean, big companies with lucrative monopolies always tell the whole truth and act in the best interest of the public right? Another way to view this news is to consider what type of talent pool is available in Silicon Valley and what logic would make a company so willing to voluntarily incur the ultra-high costs of Southern California to access it. I’m sure they aren’t moving just because it’s cool to be closer to the Facebook HQ.
Real Estate analytics firm Ellie Mae recently released its November 2012 Origination Insight Report, which provided data the confirms that qualifying for a mortgage is tougher than ever.
Here are some highlights:
- The average FICO Score for approved loans of any type was 748
- The average FICO Score for conventional-type approved loans was a lofty 763
- The average FICO Score for FHA approved loans was 701
But here’s the real kicker:
- The average FICO score for DENIED conventional loan applicants was 730!