Interest free deals scaled back

Store credit, car finance and interest free deals will become harder to qualify for. GE announced on Friday that it was tightening lending standards worldwide to help reduce risks amid the global credit crunch. GE is the main funder of many retailer interest-free deals in Australia, including those of Harvey Norman and Freedom Furniture. GE also funds the Myer Visa, Myer Black and Coles cards among others. Harvey Norman said it would continue to offer interest free promotions funded internally. Harvey Norman chairman Gerry Harvey said many competing retailers would not be able to access finance to continue interest free promotions but said that Harvey Norman was very lowly geared and said "We've got money." GE Capital which is made up of GE Commercial Finance and GE Money will be scaled back to 40 per cent of group earnings from more than half of the group's global profit in 2007. In Australia, GE is trying to sell Wizard Home Loans.

Source: The Australian