Wikipedia misstates median average FICO credit score

The current Wikipedia article “Credit score” states, “In the United States, FICO risk scores range from 300-850, with 723 being the median FICO score of Americans in 2010.”

In 2010,” was added on March 9, 2011 by Wikipedia user Primeonetx, part of his or her sole, albeit inaccurate and influential, contribution to the world’s knowledge, made in a drive-by.

That is an inaccurate statement, since credit score company FICO admits that the national media and mean average FICO credit scores are secret.  So, the Wikipedians (rhymes with comedians) could not know the median score at all, let alone what its level was only in 2010.

Radical Mallard added the business about 723 exactly one year ago today, and included misinformation about the FICO score scale and range in the same sentence.  Somebody changed the statement about the low end of the scale (from 350 to 300) on May 29, but even that is questionable (see Valentines Day).

And, that ain’t all of it (see Groundhog Day).

Employers using credit score myth, Charleston Post and Courier, Reply II

Please write if you know who his source is.

[see http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=1832]

From: David Slade
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2011 1:31 PM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company, McClatchy

Mr. Fisher,

I understand that you care deeply about whether a credit “score” or credit “report” is used to investigate the credit-worthiness of a job applicant.

I believe that distinction would be lost on the job applicants themselves.

I did not use any unnamed sources in my column, and of course I don’t make things up.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have work to do.

David Slade

Employers using credit score myth, Charleston Post and Courier, Reply I

[see http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=1824 and http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=1841]

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2011 1:01 PM
To: David Slade, reporter, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company
Cc: Pierre Manigault, chairman, Evening Post Publishing Company; William E.N. Hawkins, editor and publisher, The Post and Courier (Charleston); Elsa McDowell, public editor, The Post and Courier (Charleston); Henry Haitz III, president & publisher, The State (Columbia); Mark Lett, VP & executive editor, The State (Columbia); Peter Tira, communications director, The McClatchy Company
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company, McClatchy

It is a question, not a demand.  I started asking questions about credit scores before blogs were cool.  In fact, I started before blogs.

The age of your piece is irrelevant; it exists without substantiation and was even republished elsewhere yesterday.  If it “is the practice of The Post and Courier to use unnamed sources only in cases where there is no alternative and when the editor in charge agrees that the information provided by the unnamed source is significant enough to warrant its inclusion,” then what is the big secret?  Is someone’s life in danger?

You left out the word score in your reply.  Credit scores in employment screening is a myth that you perpetuate.  Who is your source?

Or, did you just make it up?

________________________________________
From: David Slade
Sent: Monday, March 14, 2011 10:19 AM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company

Hello Mr. Fisher,

Greetings from Charleston, S.C.

I can’t say that I’ve ever had a blogger from Ohio demand to know my sources before, but it’s nice to know that we have readers so far away.

If you have a concern about the column I wrote more than a week ago, please tell me what that concern is.

Are you suggesting that employers don’t sometimes check the credit of their job applicants?

Regards,

David Slade

Employers credit score myth, San Jose Mercury News, Zillow

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Sunday, March 13, 2011 1:43 AM
To: Zillow
Cc: Dean Singleton, chairman & CEO, MediaNews Group, Inc.; Dean Singleton, chairman & CEO, MediaNews Group, Inc.
Subject: credit score, employers, San Jose Mercury News, MediaNews Group, Zillow

[PLEASE FORWARD TO VERA GIBBONS]

You wrote, “In addition to landlords, cell phone, insurance and utility companies, hospitals and health-care institutions are also starting to check this number, as are an increasing number of employers.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?

See this message and your reply at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=myth and http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=zillow.  


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

Employers using credit score myth, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Co.

From: Greg Fisher 
Sent: Sunday, March 13, 2011
To: David Slade, reporter, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company
Cc: Pierre Manigault, chairman, Evening Post Publishing Company
Subject: credit score, employers, Charleston Post and Courier, Evening Post Publishing Company

You wrote, “The scores can be used not only to issue credit, but to help decide who might be hired for a job or approved to rent an apartment.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?

See this message and your reply at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=myth.


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

Employers using credit score myth, Salt Lake Tribune, MediaNews Group

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Sunday, March 13, 2011
To: Lesley Mitchell, business reporter, Salt Lake Tribune, MediaNews Group
Cc: Dean Singleton, chairman & CEO, MediaNews Group, Inc.; Dean Singleton, chairman & CEO, MediaNews Group, Inc.
Subject: credit score, employers, Salt Lake Tribune, MediaNews Group

You wrote, “Companies of all types — lenders, employers, insurance companies, utilities and others — increasingly are relying on credit scores to determine whether they want to do business with you, whether they want to give you a loan or even whether to hire you.”

 Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?

 See this message and your reply at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=myth.

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

Expert: Utilization factor overstatement a credit score myth

On mint.com, John Ulzheimer blogs, “The debt category is worth 30% of your FICO score points and while the credit card utilization percentage isn’t alone worth all 30% (that’s a myth), it’s certainly key to earning and maintaining great scores.”

The myth to which he refers was documented in 2009 on creditscoring.com with links calling out the offenders.  His comments are part of a growing chorus of voices who set the record straight.

But it faces a gargantuan, ever-sprawling, contradictory, capricious foe.  The silliness has existed on Wikipedia (looks like an encyclopedia; really just a message board) for over 5 years.  Later, in the chain of wacky influence and rumor that swirls around credit scores, the Wikipedians (rhymes with comedians) were emboldened by–none other than–USA TODAY, which states, “The amount of debt you have outstanding, as a percentage of your available credit limit, accounts for 30% of your score.”

On February 4, the newspaper’s reply to a creditscoring.com inquiry for its source was only this URL:

http://www.myfico.com/CreditEducation/WhatsInYourScore.aspx

And so, of course, as anyone can see, USA TODAY’s story is bunk, thus Wikipedia is bunk.

Five years of bunk.

Almost six.

And counting.

Kat Malone, where are you?

credit score, employers, Huffington Post, identity

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Thursday, November 11, 2010 8:25 AM
To: Laura Bassett, reporter, The Huffington Post
Subject: credit score, employers, Huffington Post, identity

See http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=1480.

You wrote: “After working for the same railroad for 14 years, never missing a house or car payment, Sammy Bailey says he never expected his credit score to keep him out of a job… Bailey said he applied for a new job at Am-Rail in Kansas City, Missouri, three weeks ago but failed to pass the background check because of his poor credit.”

Seldom do stories about credit score use in employment mention employers’ names.  The consumer reporting agencies all state that they do not provide credit scores for employment screening.

What is the address, telephone number or website address of Am-Rail?

[next message]

Countdown to when Experian removes statement about employers using scores

Return here to find out when Experian removed its statement that employers use credit scores.

Here is the statement:

“Credit scoring helps potential lenders, landlords, and employers quickly gauge an applicant’s credit history.”

At the bottom of the page Experian implores, “Contact Us – If this doesn’t answer your question please contact us.”

By all means, contact them.

The domains qspace.com and iplace.com are part of Experian’s out-of-control pile of web addresses.


From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Sunday, July 26, 2009 9:18 PM
To: help@qspace.com; heather.mclaughlin@experian.com; mediarelations@experian.com; corporate.responsibility@experian.com
Cc: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: credit score, employers, Experian, iplace.com

You state, ”Credit scoring helps potential lenders, landlords, and employers quickly gauge an applicant’s credit history.”

http://qspace.iplace.com/qspace/DirectPull/3D_key.asp?section=ALL

After the tongue-lashing you took at creditscoring.com, you should consider a different line of work.

http://www.creditscoring.com/influence/industry/consumerreportingagencies/experian/training-employer.html

What is the name of an employer who uses credit scores?