National Gold ANT™ American Express Card

Discussion in 'National Australia Bank Rewards' started by flyingsyd, Jul 26, 2004.

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  1. flyingsyd

    flyingsyd Junior Member

    Jul 26, 2004
    39
    0
    Has anyone else got an invite to this card?
    http://www.national.com.au/About_Us/0,,51053,00.html
    Registered Users don't see this and have the option of removing all other advertisements.  Register HERE

    You basically have to migrate your credit limit from your National card to the Amex card with the following:

    - Double points until 31/7/05
    - No points cap
    - No points expiry
    - 1:1 point for Qantas FF point

    What I don't get is why NAB would want to move customers away from their Visa to the Amex card. Would they earn a rebate from Amex? They say that it's not the Amex reward program either, it's their own Ant reward program, but it would definitely cannibalise their Visa card usage since the limit is split.
     
  2. pbsavage

    pbsavage Junior Member

    I think most of the banks would love to move everyone over to AMEX. Since the RBA changed the fee structure on Visa/MCard, they now earn less of a kickback when the card is used. Hence the reduction of value of the points now. AMEX was not included in the RBA change, and banks can now earn more from having their customer on AMEX cards. (i think anwyay)
     
  3. flyingsyd

    flyingsyd Junior Member

    Jul 26, 2004
    39
    0
    Very interesting - this makes good logic then. It's going to be a price vs volume trade off I spose. There are less merchants, but higher fees, but they would also presumably have to pay Amex some fees for licensing their card.
     
  4. centurionblack

    Jun 2, 2004
    7
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    Sydney
    Really interested to know what reaction do RBA have now and what do they really feel? Like chopping off thier head by the banks which has got away from the changes and still trying to make extra gains from the consumer!

    What do the conusmer get after the RBA introduced the changes? More fees from bank! Higher interest Rate! Less reward!
    Merchants is now Legally charge extra for customer who use card for payemnt but for cash remain no change then who pocket all the cuts on the interbank fee?

    Have to praise the CBA as they are the only one which have tried to create new product launching the Platinum Card bringing the Australian closer to rest of the card's world.

    Looking back at National, what a shame and stupid move, asking the current card holder to cut their limit on the existing Visa/mastercard and put it on the Amex which is not being as widely accepted! Even worst, introducing such a fake black Amex card is not going to increase their card base as this card is totally not interested by any of their customer who already hold the Amex Platinum or Black Centurion card, even the gold and Blue cardmember won't border to change with such a high fee charge on the account!

    Surley National will ending up to have this program ceased very soon as happened in Canada with some other bank who tried to work with Amex!

    God bless National!
     
  5. Nutcase

    Nutcase Member

    Jan 29, 2005
    492
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    NAB Amex deal

    The NAB Amex deal is a very smart piece of marketing and product management. As some of you have clearly stated, the RBA cut the interchange fees for Mastercard and Visa significantly (for personal cards) which has impacted the revenue base of the cards business for all banks in Australia.

    As a way of clawing back some of this revenue, NAB, ANZ and Westpac decided to issue AMEX (and Diners club in the ANZ instance). Both AMEX and Diners are "closed" systems and do not rely on interchange for revenue. By issuing AMEX, NAB has been able to regain some of the lost interchange by sharing revenue with AMEX. AMEX provide the payments system (not part of the RBA ruling) and NAB provide the credit, reporting and marketing.

    The NAB Ant AMEX card is offering 2 points per dollar until mid year, when it reverts to 1 point per dollar. This is a significant advantage over all other cards in the market.

    NAB is trying to placate its high spending customers who have been negatively impacted by the changes of the RBA. The watering down of Rewards programs was due to the changes referred to above. By using AMEX, NAB has sidestepped the interchange issue, and provided a product to its customers that is in demand.

    Yes, Amex is not as widely accepted as Visa, however, as recent events in the USA have shown with a partnership between AMEX and Citibank, AMEX are very aggressive when it comes to Visa and Mastercard customers. It shouldnt be too long before Amex is almost as widely accepted as Visa/mastercard.

    Hope this clarifies the situation
     
  6. centurionblack

    Jun 2, 2004
    7
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    Sydney
    All of the logical parts should be well understood by most cardholders but in fact, really curious to know how many NAB Visa/MC cardholder did sign up for this "Black Card" and how many will cancel it once the double points cease later on.

    Have to admit Amex did work hard in signing up new merchants but how many time when consumer present the Amex to the Merchants (excluding all the big retailers) for payment they will be penalised for higher surcharge fees vs the Visa/MC.

    Bringing up our Big and Wonderful - Telstra has already imposed a higher surcharge fee if payment were made by Amex/Diners.

    Also heard lots of ANZ/Diners card holder is cancelling their card and only minimal Westpac customer holding the Amex/Westpac Alltitude card.

    In fact - MBNA in the States is strongly promoting the joint Amex Card or even issuing card to the customer without their authorization, hopfully when Capital One; MBNA or the Barclaycard, are interested in Austraila will no longer having this joint card system anymore otherwise ending up we might even have the US Discovery card here soon as it's another close payment system which our RBA can't do anything to help!
     
  7. aasz1978

    aasz1978 Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    126
    1
    Re: NAB Amex deal

    Really? I think that will happen when hell freezes.

    We have this discussion somewhere in this forum where I argued that the list is shrinking rather than growing. Sure we didn't have AMEX in groceries and petrol stations before and now they have it.

    But since the new RBA reform, that list shrinks if not static. Now McDonalds don't offer them. All utilities don't want them except Telstra but that's subject to a fee. Councils don't want them.

    I've recently discovered Just Cuts and CitiLink Melbourne don't want them as well (except if you pay using Shell Touch Kiosk). I don't know whether MetLink wants them but I'll soon find out.

    Seriously though, NAB moves to AMEX is purely a stupid idea which proves that they learn nothing from their last debacle. I suggest they should start thinking about expanding their affiliation with popular institutions such as AMA, ICAA, CPA etc with VISA/MC rather than relying on AMEX.
     
  8. centurionblack

    Jun 2, 2004
    7
    0
    Sydney
    Very Smart comment and good suggestion that NAB should be going to issue more on the Affinity Card or Co-branded Visa/MC rather than making use of Amex to fulfill their fairy dreams.

    How about a joint with David Jones and surely it should be a Win Win situation for them if they don't charge any membership fee!
     
  9. Nutcase

    Nutcase Member

    Jan 29, 2005
    492
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    Ant Amex Card

    Guys

    I should clarify a couple of points.

    Interchange funds frequent flyer points on Visa/Mcard credit cards.

    Most high spenders are also "Transactors" not "revolvers". Revolvers make lots of money for the bank, while transactors cost the bank money. (Revolvers are customers that dont pay off their balance in full every month)

    As you can imagine, If youre a high spender, racking up lots of points and , not "revolving", you are a VERY unprofitable customer. This will probably horrify most high volume Visa/Mcard card users as we tend to think that we are making the bank a fortune. I can assure you we are NOT.

    AMEX is on the scene because it charges a higher merchant fee and doesnt have to pay interchange. In other words, it has a different revenue model.

    As you have stated, Amex isnt accepted everywhere. Also, get used to the idea of Visa and Mcard not being attractive as FF point accruing machines. This is here to stay.

    As a suggestion,

    1) Get some form of AMEX card and opt for rewards (Ant card, Rewards Maximiser)
    2) Get a citbank Silver Visa/Mcard

    Use the Amex for everything that you can and the Visa as back up. All transactions will accrue points and the total fees that you will pay in a year will be about $200 (if you arent a revolver)

    Surely this is a simple and inexpensive way of maintaining your points "habbit".
     
  10. clifford

    clifford Established Member

    Jul 6, 2004
    1,689
    216
    Canberra / London
    And, my friends, don't forget about Diners.

    $1 = 1 point/mile.

    :)
     
  11. aasz1978

    aasz1978 Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    126
    1
    Diners is even worse. Education Institutions don't like them :cry:
     
  12. aasz1978

    aasz1978 Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    126
    1
    The way Nutcase presented his case makes an impression that the only revenue stream banks get is purely from Interchange fees.

    Don't forget there is a merchant fees (1.69% - 3.39% for Amex). There is a transaction fees although they are not much. There is also Annual Fees. There are also Interest Charges (you call it "revolvers").

    And speaking about interest charges, wanna bet there are plenty of people who are happy to pay interest? Take Citibank for example. A 6.9% lifetime is slightly cheaper than a home loan rate (7.02% ANZ). Some even offers 4.9%.

    These costs exclude others such as Late payment fees, O/S fees, ATM fees, etc. You put Interchange fees on top of that.

    And do you really think the stuff they have on Rewards are that expensive? For example, my friend had an Eggo (the little egg shaped egg cooker) and that's $39 but takes about 10000 points.

    Bottom line is... yes, take a Citibank credit card and AMEX. They are good combination indeed. But don't make it as if banks are losing money because of us.....
     
  13. Nutcase

    Nutcase Member

    Jan 29, 2005
    492
    64
    Assaz1978 Thanks for your reply

    Perhaps we need to investigate the credit card business a little further to fully flesh out what is happening.

    Interchange is the amount that essentailly shared with Visa and Mastercard and the Banks for use of their networks. VIsa and Mcard are seperate franchises that are owned by the banks. This interchange amount is between 0.4796% and 0.6545% of every dollar spent on a Visa or Mastercard. (See http://www.visa.com.au/wholesale/index.shtml)

    Think about how much gets spent on cards and you can see why Visa and MCard are being so protective of their businesses.

    So if your MSF (merchant service fee )is 1.6%, the amount left over after interchange is 0.9455%, a very skinny margin indeed. Even Supermarkets make more than this.

    Take out the cost of the network, the cost of processing, fraud, marketing, overheads etc and you can see why that if you are a "transactor" you may not be profitable.

    Now take out the cost of Frequent Flyer points which is paid to Qantas, and it becomes a very difficult case to make profitable.

    Yes, some Merchant fees are higher, but most are lower and this is where the volume is.

    The banks do recoup revenue from late payment fees (if you are foolish enough to pay these) as well as interest in revolving balances. However, this is not the main source of revenue for them.

    There are no transaction fees on credit cards. There are overseas ATM charges, however, consider the fact that the bank that issues the card has to pay the owner of the ATM for the use of this service or the Cirrus or Plus networks on which they run. This is not a financial windfall for the banks like you may think

    To address your statement about balance transfers, the best rate at the moment is being offered by 3 institions. AMEX, Citi and HSBC. This is 2.9% for 6 months. (just threaten to move your business to get this deal)

    But, BEWARE! Banks make a lot of money from this. The reason is because if you transact on a card that you have made a balance transfer on, the money that you pay off the card for the balance transfer is counted first, then the transactions.

    What this means to consumers is that you will be paying 18.25% (Current Citi Visa/Mcard classic rate) on your balance transfer AND your last 6 months transactions if you transact on this card during the preceeding 6 months and havent paid back every cent within that time frame. Also remember that the Balance transfer is 2.9% but the purchases are at 18.25% and will be charged seperately. After 6 months, they will all be at 18.25%. Scary stuff.

    My reccomendation is that if you do a balance transfer, you DO NOT transact on the card until after you have cleared the transferred balance otherwise you could end up worse off than when you started.

    Sadly, the banks make most of their money in the credit card business from those who can least afford it. These people subsidise our FF points. These are the people that pay late fees and pay high interest rates on revolviing balances.

    As far as rewards are concerned, yes you are right, they are not very good value for points. FF points are by far the best value hence the fact that they arent as easy to get any more.

    Also, banks dont loose money on their cards businesses. They have, however been negatively impacted by the changes to interchange and will look to recoup this wherever possible through increased fees and decreased benefits. Alternatively they can use channels that are more attractive (AMex and Diners for example)

    Hope this explains things a little more clearly how the cards business works.

    Ultimately, you have to make your own decision about which product that you are going to use and benefit from as well as use it wisely. Read the PDS (Product disclosure satement) carefully and dont pay fees you dont need to.
     
  14. aasz1978

    aasz1978 Member

    Jan 12, 2005
    126
    1
    Rather than an ANT Card, might want to go with NAB Mini Visa.

    One, it's sexy. Two, it's got an up to $120 rebates per year. And three, it's only $19 pa (free for one year).

    Too bad it doesn't have any Flybuys attachment which is a real shame I think.

    Given Nutcase's point of view, I reckon it would take a lot for NAB to recoup costs on this Mini Visa.
     
  15. Nutcase

    Nutcase Member

    Jan 29, 2005
    492
    64
    Visa Mini Vs ANT? Are you for real?

    aasz1978

    I cannot understand why you would suggest getting a NAB mini Visa if you are a frequent flyer

    This card is aimed at 18-25 year olds (mainly women).

    You also get 1% back (to a maximum of $10 per month) therefore you would have to spend $1000 per month to get your $10 back. $12,000 per year would equal $120.00

    This doesnt seem like the realm of high flyers to me. Im sure that they would rather pay for an AMEx and rack up thousands of points. It would be a better return on their investment.

    Lots of love
    NC
     
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