Michigan National Bank has joined a small number of financial institutions offering home equity loans linked to credit cards.
The $10 billion-asset bank is offering the Equimoney Visa card to the credit card customers of other banks in its market. The bank does not otherwise have a card portfolio, said Robert Hutchinson, who is in charge of branches and telephone banking for Michigan National.
"Anything we get will be new money for the bank," Mr. Hutchinson said.
Michigan National is hoping a 28-day grace period on new purchases will attract prospects. The interest rate is fixed at the prime rate, and interest charges are generally tax deductible.
According to a recent study by Brittain Associates, an Atlanta-based research firm, $26 billion in credit card debt, representing 4.2 million households, has been transferred to home equity loan products.