Ridiculous credit score goodwill adjustment idea returns

An Unexpected Error has occurred.” – myFICO message board

It’s back (unfortunately).

TIME (indeed, with the help of Fair Isaac) helps it along.

And, a CreditCards.com story titled “8 Quick Fixes for Your Credit Score” states:

If there are problems like late or missed payments on your credit report, it can sometimes pay off to ask your card issuer for a ‘goodwill adjustment.’ This is especially true if you have good credit and you otherwise have been a model customer. Write your card issuer to ask – you may be surprised by their answer.

Writers will be writers, but here is something even more confounding. A former Fair Isaac executive and witness to Congress makes a similar suggestion on Credit.com:

Matt may try and work with the lender to see if they will delete the judgment if he satisfies it in full (this is sometimes referred to as a ‘pay for delete‘ agreement), but there are no guarantees the lender will agree to that (and there is no requirement they do so).

Try the “GW LETTER” hyperlinks on the page Goodwill adjustment – Influence: Media, lying that used to lead to myFICO message board comments about the so-called goodwill adjustment (lie). The links no longer work.

A myFICO forum contributer wants to keep it quiet about the lying:

It’s fine to have one-off success stories here and there and various contact info scattered across many posts. However, creating a single ‘database’ that broadcasts creditors’ willingness to provide GW adjustments may actually be counter-productive and discourage creditors from granting this nicety. Remember, anyone can read these message boards.

Whoops.

credit score, TIME: FICO suggests goodwill adjustment

For a while, the idea of the “goodwill adjustment” looked like it was dead.  It is a lie by a furnisher of information to consumer reporting agencies, and flies in the face of logic, ethics and, indeed, the law, which states

The banking system is dependent upon fair and accurate credit reporting. Inaccurate credit reports directly impair the efficiency of the banking system, and unfair credit reporting methods undermine the public confidence which is essential to the continued functioning of the banking system.

Regardless of that naive federal wish, Fair Isaac, the FICO score company leads the charge with regard to the practice touted by experts, disgruntled consumers and media.

According to TIME Moneyland, (myFICO.com consumer operations manager Barry) “Paperno says you can request a ‘pay for delete’ agreement or ‘good will[SIC] adjustment’: you pay everything off in full and they remove the black mark from your report.”

Previously, TIME made a correction to one of its articles, although you would not necessarily know it.

In a day of loss of trust in bond rating agencies, the credit report goodwill adjustment baloney is a similar confusing signal in the consumer segment.  Taking the notion to the logical extreme, the consumer could withhold the last payment of an installment agreement unless the creditor agrees to remove all of the account’s history of late payments.  And why not?  Even FICO (with the help of TIME) suggests it.

You had better get on the moneywagon, too; the competition (the unethical consumer) is getting ahead.

“We have met the enemy and he is us.” – Pogo

consumer report accuracy, CDIA, Gannett, PERC, Arthur Andersen III

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Friday, June 17, 2011 8:55 AM
To: Stuart K. Pratt, president & CEO, Consumer Data Industry Association
Cc: Norm Magnuson, VP, public affairs, CDIA; Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA)
Subject: RE: consumer report accuracy, CDIA, Gannett, PERC, Arthur Andersen III

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2141.

You wrote: “The end result of PERC’s study is that conjecture and opinions about accuracy have been replaced by empirical data. This is the only independent third-party study ever undertaken.”

So, was the 1991 study not independent, not third-party, or not a study?

————————————————————

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Sunday, June 12, 2011 7:35 AM
To: Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA)
Cc: Norm Magnuson, VP, public affairs, CDIA
Subject: RE: consumer report accuracy, CDIA, Gannett, PERC, Arthur Andersen II

Please reply.

———————————————————– 

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 07, 2011 10:04 AM
To: Consumer Data Industry Association (CDIA)
Subject: consumer report accuracy, CDIA, Gannett, PERC, Arthur Andersen

So, was the 1991 study not independent, not third-party, or not a study?


Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
creditscoring.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

PREVIOUS POST

credit score, utilization ratio, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:09 AM
To: Jennifer Waters, columnist, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation
Subject: credit score, utilization ratio, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation

 See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2190, http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=wall-street-journal, and http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=news-corporation.

You wrote, “It’s a fussier method than that, but your utilization rate is worth some 30% of your score.”

Who is your source for the worth of the utilization rate?


Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
creditscoring.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

UPDATE, 6/21/2011

From: Waters, Jennifer 
Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:21 AM
To: ‘greg@creditscoring.com’
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation

Experian and TransUnion and FICO.

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:59 AM
To: Waters, Jennifer
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation, correction

Fair Isaac indicates that the proportion of credit lines used is only one of six items in an entire category which comprises 30%, “Amounts Owed.”

When will you make a correction?

Where do Experian and TransUnion make the statements you refer to?


Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
creditscoring.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

UPDATE, 6/22/2011
Social media

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Wednesday, June 22, 2011 10:15 AM
To: Jennifer Waters, columnist, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation
Cc: Melissa Rudy; Emily Glazer, reporter, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation; Teri Everett, senior vice president, Corporate Affairs & Communications, News Corporation
Subject: RE: credit score, utilization ratio, Consumer Confidential, MarketWatch, Wall Street Journal, News Corporation, correction II

If

a + b + c + d + .30 + f = .30

then the sum of

a, b, c, d, and f must be zero.

But that must not be true since Fair Isaac said, for instance, regarding the 4th item in the category, “Your FICO Score considers the number of accounts you have with balances” (also, see Equifax, 1997).  Are we both talking about the same Fair Isaac?

What is your equation?

Also, could you find somebody to clean up the page titled, “One in Six Employers Looking At Your Credit Report, Study Finds”?  On the menu bar in Internet Explorer, click on View, then Source (Ctrl+U in Firefox and Chrome) to see the page’s HTML source code.  It still says, “Many employers are checking job candidates’ credit scores, but how big of a factor are credit scores in a company’s eventual decision to hire?”

And, another thing:  Please have Rupert Murdoch review the page titled, “How to Score a Free Credit Score.”  It says that employers use credit scores, and that is a myth.

And, one more thing:  Have Mr. Murdoch review the page titled, “Protect Credit Score.”  It has been a month.

See an example of an honorable correction by Gannett on its page titled, “Our view: Credit reports stacked against consumers.”


Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
creditscoring.com
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

CDIA responds to Gannett regarding credit report accuracy

Gannett’s USA Today editorialized, “Instead of putting its money into better dispute resolution, the industry is more interested in trying to prove that error rates are small.”

In an opposing view, consumer reporting industry trade organization, CDIA, said:  “The end result of PERC’s study is that conjecture and opinions about accuracy have been replaced by empirical data. This is the only independent third-party study ever undertaken.”

However, in 2001, Associated Credit Bureaus (now CDIA) said, “In the only statistically valid study conducted to date, Arthur Andersen concluded that in only two-tenths of one percent of the over 15,000 cases studied, were consumers denied a benefit based on an error in their credit report.”

UPDATE, 7/6/2011