PC Financial top-ranked in Canada credit card study

Personal Finance, Shopping

President’s Choice Financial’s credit card nabbed the highest customer satisfaction rating in J.D. Power’s inaugural Canada credit card study, beating out American Express, Canadian Tire and all the Big Six banks’ offerings.

The financial services brand of supermarket chain Loblaw Companies Ltd. had the highest score of 788 on the study, which examines six factors including benefits, rewards and credit card terms.

American Express was ranked second, followed by retailer Canadian Tire’s credit card in third and Capital One in fourth place.

Bank of Montreal and Royal Bank of Canada’s credit cards tied for fifth place with a score of 758 — matching the industry average — followed by Scotiabank and National Bank of Canada.

MBNA Canada and CIBC tied for eighth place, followed by TD Canada Trust’s credit card which got a score of 739.

J.D. Power’s survey was conducted in May and included responses from more than 6,000 card holders who used a major credit card in the past three months.

Satisfaction with credit cards is higher among card holders who realized tangible benefits by redeeming rewards in the past month, J.D. Power said.

(Expographiq)

PC Financial’s MasterCard allows clients to earn PC Optimum points for each dollar they spend on the card, which can be redeemed at the Canadian retail conglomerate’s stores including Loblaws, Joe Fresh and Shoppers Drug Mart.

“We are extremely grateful to our customers for showing their appreciation for our cards and recognizing us as .1,” said Barry Columb, president and CEO of PC Financial in a statement. “We are committed to providing Canadians with a simple, more rewarding credit card experience.”

A rewards program’s benefits can be enough of a draw to push some credit card holders to switch providers, according to J.D. Power. Of the card holders who switched their primary credit card during the last year, 48 per cent did so for a better rewards program, the study showed.

Cash back and airline tickets are the top two rewards card holders choose, said J.D. Power, a global market research company based in Costa Mesa, Calif.

The value placed on rewards programs was in the spotlight last month when an Air Canada-led consortium, which includes CIBC and TD, signed a tentative $450-million deal to acquire the Aeroplan loyalty program from Aimia Inc.

The tentative deal came after more than a year of uncertainty about the future of Aeroplan and points holders, after Air Canada said in May 2017 that it would switch to its own loyalty program in July 2020.

Prior to the announcement, the lack of clarity surrounding Aeroplan was seen to have affected customer satisfaction of card holders, J.D. Power said.

Roughly 10 per cent of card holders in Canada use an Aeroplan card as their primary credit card, it added.

Source: The Canadian Press via CP24, 10 Sep 2018.

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