Why do credit card companies run several offers at once for balance transfers?

This is an amusing thing that I found when I simply took a look at my Chase Visa card (it has no balance). My offers for a balance transfer are:

0% APR for the first 8 billing cycle(s) (Respond by: 11/30/10)

1.99% APR for the first 15 billing cycle(s) (Respond by: 11/30/10)

0% APR through billing cycle ending in 11/2011. Additional terms apply. Respond by: 11/30/10

The Standard APR currently on your account

Now, who in their right mind would not take offer #3 with a 0%APR through 11/2011, if they were going to do a balance transfer with the above option? Likewise, who would actually *choose8 "The Standard APR on your account." I mean, seriously...

Secondly, I'm confused about some of these credit card companies' practices. I've read about and have known a lot of people who were turned down for a balance transfer, citing the reason of high balances on 1 or more other credit cards. But the offer in itself is stating for you to purposefully transfer those high interest credit cards into a single, lower interest balance transfer to their card. How the h3ll do you "deny" somebody your very offer because they tried to put into effect what you offered them? I'm very confused how credit card companies seem to expect people to do a "balance transfer" with no balances on other credit cards in order to be able to utilize a transfer. :-P That seems to be the only way people could get approved for such a thing, but then it's useless, because that's the point is to have balances on other cards when you do it. What's going on with this?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    The difference is in the fine print. In some cases, those shorter term offers do not charge transfer fees while that longer term probably includes a 3% to 5% transfer fee. There might also be other requirements that make the difference.

    They make all these different offers to entice you to run up a balance. Be very careful about any special rate offer and be sure to read ALL the fine print. Folks get themselves in trouble by transfering debt from one credit card to the next. It sounds like a good idea to get the lower rate but they never seem to pay off the balance and just keep transferring and adding to the debt.

    Source(s): BD
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