Here’s Why Banks May Be Rejecting More Credit Card Applications

Banks are taking a closer look at FICO scores before saying yes.

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Take a moment to check your credit score before applying for the latest credit card offer. According to a recent survey done by the Federal Reserve, banks are tightening up their approval process for credit cards.

The survey asked 76 domestic banks the likelihood of credit card approval for borrowers with a FICO score of 620, 680 and 720. The banks reported they were less likely to approve a credit card application for scores 680 and under. The banks said they were likely to approve a credit card application of 720 or more.

Rejections aren’t personal. The banks surveyed reported that they are less likely to approve the lower FICO scores due to the following reasons: uncertainty of the future economy, a reduced desire to take on risk and concerns about borrowers’ abilities to make consistent payments.

Will You Be Rejected for a FICO Score Below 720?

If you have a FICO score below 720, you aren’t going to automatically be denied on your credit card application, but there is a higher chance of rejection. Similarly, a score above 720 isn’t a promise for approval either.

>>QUALIFY: Here’s How To Get Approved for a Credit Card When You Have Bad Credit

However, knowing your credit score before you apply for a new credit card can help you avoid unnecessary rejection. Remember, a rejection doesn’t hurt your score, but your score might be affected when you apply for a new card. Space out your credit card applications to avoid hurting your score.

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Credit: Twenty20

Popular Credit Cards to Build Credit

Whether you’re looking to build your credit or are uncertain about the possibility of a new credit card approval, we’ve rounded up some of the more popular credit cards for people who are looking to build their credit scores.

Ready to apply? Click the links below to begin a secure and confidential application process directly with the issuer.

1. Best Cash-Back Sign-Up Bonus: Bank of America® Cash Rewards Credit Card

2. Best for Flat-Rate Cash Back: Chase Freedom Unlimited®

3. Best for Balance Transfers: Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

How to Compare Rewards Credit Cards

Still not sure about which of the best rewards cards are right for you? We get it. Choosing a cash-back credit card that meets your needs is important, which is why Slickdeals’ Credit Card Hub helps you compare the benefits of different cards, search credit cards by rewards categories, and explore cards by their issuers — all to find the best fit for your wallet.

 >>NEXT: This Is Our Favorite Credit Card to Buy a Cup of Coffee With

We want to make sure you get the best deal! Our editors strive to ensure that the information in this article is accurate as of the date published, but please keep in mind that offers can change. We encourage you to verify all terms and conditions of any financial product before you apply. Also, please remember this content wasn't provided, reviewed or endorsed by any company mentioned in this article.

Any product or service prices/offers that appear in this article are accurate at time of publish, and are subject to change without notice. Please verify the actual selling price and offer details on the merchant's site before making a purchase.

Ryan Tronier

Ryan Tronier is a personal finance editor and writer. He has worked in journalism and publishing for nearly two decades before becoming Slickdeals' Personal Finance and Credit Card Editor. Ryan's work has appeared in publications like USA TODAY, NBC News, Sapling and Techwalla. Find him online at

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