American Express Customers: Don’t Try This At Home

American Express is very hip to this game, by the way. Paypal purchases are always scrutinized by American Express. They’re scrutinized because it’s so easy to do what I’ve just described. Small purchases won’t likely gain anyone’s attention at American Express, but you can bet your bottom dollar that big purchases won’t go unnoticed.

American Express, once it has flagged your account, wants to know two things: one, are you essentially doing a cash advance or balance transfer? And, two, are you broke? Indeed, if you are doing these kinds of sham transactions, you’re likely strapped for cash. If you’re strapped for cash, and doing these kinds of deals, then you’re likely a high-risk customer to American Express. If you’re a high risk to American Express, it’s going to reduce your limit substantially or cancel your card altogether.

If you’re going to do these kinds of Paypal transactions, don’t use American Express to do it. They’re on top of the game when it comes to this stuff. Better still, just don’t do it at all. Indeed, this is not the credit environment in which to test the cards companies’ computer systems.

I hate writing these kinds of stories. On the one hand, it will help those who are currently doing — or thinking about doing — what I am about to write about. On the other hand, there will be some readers who will now go out and do exactly what I am trying to dissuade them from doing. That said, I can’t control what my readers do. They’ll do what they’re going to do. Here’s the deal. A

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Steve Rhode
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