A Federal Reserve report released last week revealed that colleges, foundations, and alumni groups in Colorado were paid $1,042,643 by credit card companies in 2010 for allowing them to access students.
The disclosure is part of a program enacted in 2009 governing how credit card companies market to students. In addition to public disclosures, the program also regulates the types of fees that can be applied and increases accountability for card issuers.
According to the Denver Business Journal, Colorado's largest recipients of credit card company cash include:
- University of Colorado Foundation ($550,000 from FIA Card Services)
- Association of Graduates of the United States Air Force Academy ($110,000 from USAA Savings Bank)
- University of Northern Colorado Alumni Association ($100,000 from FIA Card Services)
- Regents of the University of Colorado ($89,439 from FIA Card Services)
- University of Denver Alumni Association ($60,000 from FIA Card Services)
Reached for response by the Denver Post, Colorado Bankers Association spokesman Tim Powers said that, "Providing young individuals with an introduction to basic banking services, like checking accounts and savings accounts, helps further financial literacy and bestow individuals with the basic tools to develop responsible financial habits." Further, "Universities are able to receive a source of income during a time when they are particularly stressed — income that does not have to come from tuition or the state."
Overall, card issuers paid 14 percent less in 2010 than in 2009, as can be seen in last year's report.