credit score, employers, Poverty Reduction Initiative

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Friday, February 17, 2012 9:27 AM
To: Jeff Brown, executive director, Poverty Reduction Initiative
Cc: Yvonne Zipp, business reporter, Kalamazoo Gazette; James Stephanak, publisher, Kalamazoo Gazette
Subject: credit score, employers, Poverty Reduction Initiative

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=3436, http://blog.creditscoring.com/?cat=73 and http://blog.creditscoring.com/?cat=13.

You said, “[SIC]Increasing number of large employers are using these scores — not only are you not going to have a good credit score, you’re not going to be able to get a job.”

Employers do not use credit scores because they cannot even get them; the consumer reporting agencies do not provide credit scores for employment purposes.  What evidence suggests that an increasing number of large employers (or any employer, at all) use credit scores?

We don’t know how it’s going to turn out, but we are creating a world of misinformation.  What will you do to stop it?


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

 

[next message]

credit score, employers, Chicago Tribune, 2012-01-13

[for background, see Two and Two: Credit scores fall, AP] 

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 8:08 AM
To: Marksjarvis, Gail
Subject: credit scores fall story, 15 to 25.5 percent

You wrote: “According to research released this month by Fair Isaac Corp., which produces FICO credit scores, about 25.5 percent of Americans have credit scores below 599 — a poor score that often interferes with their ability to get a car loan or even other credit cards. That’s far below the long-term average of 15 percent.”

From whom did you learn the 15 percent figure?

 

From: Marksjarvis, Gail
Sent: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 2:04 PM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Subject: RE: credit scores fall story, 15 to 25.5 percent

Fair Isaac released a study about two weeks ago.

 

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 1:51 PM
To: Marksjarvis, Gail
Subject: RE: credit scores fall story, not from news release

FICO’s news release does not mention the 15 percent figure.

You make the same error as the Associated Press story regarding the 25.5% number. Actually, 25.5% are under 600, not 599.

Did you take your information from AP?

 

From: Marksjarvis, Gail
Sent: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 4:17 PM
To: ‘greg@creditscoring.com’
Subject: RE: credit scores fall story, not from news release

Is 15 percent wrong?

 

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Wednesday, July 21, 2010 4:43 PM
To: Marksjarvis, Gail
Cc: Michael Lev, associate managing editor, business, Chicago Tribune
Subject: RE: credit scores fall story, unnamed sources

I don’t know; I didn’t do the research for the story.

This is the third request. Do you refuse to name your source? Or, did you just make up the number, yourself?

 

From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Thursday, July 22, 2010 1:13 PM
To: Marksjarvis, Gail
Cc: Michael Lev, associate managing editor, business, Chicago Tribune; Jane Hirt, managing editor, Chicago Tribune
Subject: RE: credit scores fall story, propagation

Your story just appeared on the Fresno Bee’s website.

Who is your source?


From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2012 1:51 PM
To: Gail MarksJarvis, personal finance columnist, Chicago Tribune
Subject: credit score, employers, Chicago Tribune

You wrote, “Because employers and landlords have access to the scores, it can determine who gets an apartment or even a job.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?


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

 

VISA spreads credit score myth then says myths run rampant

One of the major proponents of the credit score/employers myth is Visa, Inc.  Ironically, the credit card company just issued the statement, “Visa Inc. Survey: Credit Score Myths Run Rampant.”

In 2007, Visa took it on the chin for its unsubstantiated statements about credit scores and jobs.  The company, through its Practical Money Skills for Life program replied, “We’re not at liberty to disclose specific employers who use credit scores in employee screening, but we are aware of instances in which this has been done.”

Last year, the person at the center of the 2007 silliness did the deed again.  Visa senior director Jason Alderman wrote, “A poor credit score can impact their ability to qualify for loans, secure favorable interest and insurance rates or even get a job or an apartment.”

Unlike other rumormongers (aka journalists with unnamed sources), Visa knows (or, at least, it says it knows) of instances of the alleged illicit, unauthorized practice.  It’s just that it’s a secret.

Visa:  It’s everywhere (unfortunately).

 

From: “creditscoring.com” <greg@creditscoring.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2009 13:36:22 -0500
To: <info@whatsmyscore.org>, <globalmedia@visa.com>, <valmanaf@visa.com>, <jensenp@visa.com>, <chlebowm@visa.com>
Subject: credit score, employers

You wrote, “Many employers have made checking a credit score a mandatory part of the job application process, just as drug testing and criminal background checks are now common requirements for jobs in many industries.”

and

“Credit scores determine… in some cases, whether you get that job or apartment you’ve been hoping for.”

See http://creditscoring.com/influence/government/employercreditscorebelievers.html#visa1 .

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?

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

 

From: Practical Money Skills for Life [mailto:info@practicalmoneyskills.com]
Sent: Tuesday, February 17, 2009 3:52 PM
To: greg@creditscoring.com
Cc: Mark Flanagan
Subject: Re: credit score, employers

Hello Greg

Our source for this information is the Federal Trade Commission. Please see their Consumer Alert here:
http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/consumer/alerts/alt053.shtm

We’re not at liberty to disclose specific employers who use credit scores in employee screening, but we are aware of instances in which this has been done.

Thank you.

Practical Money Skills for Life Support
http://www.practicalmoneyskills.com

 

From: creditscoring.com [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: February 17, 2009
To: Practical Money Skills for Life
Cc: pcohen@visa.com; info@whatsmyscore.org; globalmedia@visa.com; valmanaf@visa.com; jensenp@visa.com; chlebowm@visa.com
Subject: Re: credit score, employers II, FTC, identity

The word “score” does not appear in that Federal Trade Commission document.

What are the words on that FTC page to which you refer?  Did you see the actual credit score in the employment screening instances?  Does Visa use credit scores in employee screening?

What is your name?

 

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Wednesday, October 12, 2011 12:31 PM
To: jason@practicalmoneyskills.com
Cc: pcohen@visa.com; info@whatsmyscore.org; globalmedia@visa.com; valmanaf@visa.com; jensenp@visa.com; chlebowm@visa.com; Practical Money Skills for Life
Subject: RE: credit score, employers III, survey

Did you include a question about employers using credit scores?


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

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

Fox corrects, then repeats, credit score employers myth

In November, Adam Levin, chairman and co-founder of Credit.com and former director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs appeared on something from the Fox Business Network called FBN Live.  

Levin said, “Employers are not allowed–nor do they–look at credit scores; that’s an urban myth.” (37:00)

Interviewer Tracy Byrnes responds: “Wait! Can you say that again? So, in theory, your employer is not supposed to look at your score?”

Levin explains that credit reports for employment purposes do not even contain credit scores.

However, the title of the web page for the video is “Don’t Let Your Credit Score Hurt Your Job Hunt – We take a look at how a bad credit score could hurt your job prospects.”

And, last month, in a conversation about about money and human emotion, the Fox Business host had this exchange with an author and “CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional” who has a “passion for helping people”* (1:45):

GUEST:  It’s a stressful time.

HOST: Well, especially because, now, you know, you go for a new job and your new employer’s looking at your credit score. 

GUEST: Yes!

HOST:  It’s everywhere.

GUEST:  Agh! 

HOST: Right?

GUEST: It’s true.  It’s true.

The web page for that video is titled, “Emotions Behind Our Financial Decisions – Financial advisor and author Karen Lee offers insight into understanding the emotions behind our financial decisions.”

But another unfortunate action brings the circus full-circle.  Even Credit.com states: “Your credit score is a determining factor in your mortgage and auto loan terms, credit card rates and insurance premiums. Some employers and landlords also take your score into consideration.”

*see all the clichés: “passion,” “helping people,” etc.

credit score, employers, CBS MoneyWatch.com

See the video that includes clips of a senator, a congressman, a governor and The Early Show on CBS.

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 8:47 AM
To: Dan Kadlec, contributor, CBS MoneyWatch
Subject: credit score, employers, CBS MoneyWatch.com

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2258, http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=cbs and  http://blog.creditscoring.com/?tag=nationalamusements.

You wrote, “In the real world you’ll want and need a potential employer or landlord or auto dealer who runs a credit check on you to find a good score that testifies to your dependability.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?


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

credit score, employers, time.com Moneyland, quickanddirtytips.com Money Girl

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Monday, June 20, 2011 10:40 AM
To: Scott Medintz, editor, MoneyLand, Time Magazine; Scott Medintz, editor, MoneyLand, Time Magazine
Cc: Laura D. Adams, personal finance expert, Quick and Dirty Tips
Subject: credit score, employers, time.com MoneyLand, quickanddirtytips.com Money Girl

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2177 and http://blog.creditscoring.com/?cat=134.

You published, “But all of these particulars are either difficult or impossible to change, whereas increasing your credit score is something you can start any time.”

The link in that sentence leads to a page which states, “Your score indicates your creditworthiness to potential lenders, banks, landlords, insurance companies, and even to some employers, for instance.”

However, the national consumer reporting agencies all state that they do not provide credit scores for employment purposes. 

What change will you make? 


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

——————————————-

UPDATE, 6/21/2011

Time Warner replaced the link with one to Fair Isaac’s page “How to Repair Your Credit and Improve Your FICO Credit Score,” but did not document the correction on the original page.  POOF!  It just went away. 

Moneyland is a magical place.

Here is today’s message to Time Warner.

——————————————-

UPDATE, 6/27/2011

Time is (finally) a Believer.  After Moneyland got religion, it even published a new article stating, “It’s important to note that employers can’t actually see your three-digit credit score; as a result, there’s no ‘magic number’ that will make a company accept or reject an applicant.”

But we are still doomed.

credit score, employers, NASDAQ, 2011-06-13

From: Greg Fisher [mailto:greg@creditscoring.com]
Sent: Monday, June 13, 2011 8:37 AM
To: JR Hevron, writer, editor, educator, and content creator, MortgageLoan.com
Subject: credit score, employers, NASDAQ, 2011-06-13

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2169.

You wrote, “A bad credit score can make it hard to get a job (some employers are taking credit into consideration), a new apartment, and can make for much higher costs on a future mortgage.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?


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

Credit score, employers and Minyanville


From: Greg Fisher
Sent: Monday, May 09, 2011
To: Todd Harrison, founder and CEO, Minyanville Media, Inc.
Cc: Conor Sen, “Professor,” Minyanville
Subject: credit score, employers, Minyanville

See this message and your response at http://blog.creditscoring.com/?p=2077.

You published, “There was a time when we’d apply for a job or an apartment or a mortgage and not have to worry about a credit score.”

Who is your source regarding credit score use by employers?


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?