The Truth-in-Lending Act, passed in 1968, requires full and clear disclosure to borrowers of the terms of bank lending. Interest rates charged on bank credit cards subsequently remained much higher than the cost of funds and have tended not to follow occasional declines in other interest rates.

Some observers interpreted this pattern as indicating imperfect competition, possibly of a sort that could be alleviated by stronger disclosure requirements. Following this logic, Congress passed the Fair Credit and Charge Card Disclosure Act, which took effect in 1988 and strengthened mandatory disclosure specifically for credit cards.

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