Credit scores are no longer considered a “qualifying factor” when it comes to getting a job, according to the head of the National Credit Union Administration.
In a speech to a group of credit unions this week, Julie Sainz, director of consumer and business development for the NCA, said there is no longer a “conventional wisdom” that credit scores are a “valid and relevant factor” for getting credit.
Instead, credit scores now serve as a “gift” to lenders, Sains said, which can be used to negotiate better terms for credit, or even for employers to reject applicants based on credit score.
The NCA is a consumer credit rating agency and the primary lender for many credit cards.
Sainz’s comments follow a similar move last year by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, which said credit scores were not considered a valid factor in its decision to grant its credit cards to people without a credit history.
The National Credit Unions Association (NCUA) in August asked the Fed to clarify its stance.
Sains told the group credit scores do matter when it come to applying for a loan and other types of loans, but the Fed did not respond to requests for comment on whether it still considers credit scores to be a valid and relevant measure of whether someone can qualify for a credit card.
She said she believes lenders need to understand the different types of credit scores available, and that a better understanding of what they are doing can be a useful tool.
“It’s not a good sign that they’re telling us they’re using credit scores when they’re not,” Sainy said.
“Credit scores are really useful for some lenders to understand how people might actually use a loan.”
The NCEA, which provides credit scoring for banks, credit unions and other institutions, has been pushing to increase the number of people with a credit score of at least 700.
That goal is also expected to rise as the financial crisis continues to affect consumer lending.
“The financial crisis has impacted credit and credit scoring as a whole,” said NCA President and CEO Robert Dallek.
“We want to see more people with credit scores in line to apply for a new loan and to be able to get credit and to get into a loan with the banks.”
But some experts have warned that the increasing number of credit cards and other consumer products, as well as a growing reliance on online credit services, means credit scores may not be the most accurate predictor of a person’s creditworthiness.
“There’s no way to make a statement on credit scores,” said Paul Nemetz, a consumer law expert at the University of Minnesota.
“You can’t have a reliable and objective assessment of creditworthiness based on the score.”
Credit scores may also be less reliable than other factors that can be taken into account when deciding who gets a loan, including the length of time someone has been in a relationship and whether they are a good fit for the job.
In recent years, the number and length of credit agreements has been linked to a person or a household’s credit score, according.
But in some cases, the relationships have been more than just one-off, as was the case with the former CEO of mortgage lender Equifax, Susan Neuman.
The Equifax scandal exposed the company’s ability to collect personal information from consumers, including information on their Social Security numbers, for up to two years, without a court order or court order of a court in another jurisdiction.
The company later paid $185 million to settle with the US government.
Sansa Tompkins, an analyst at research firm S&P Dow Jones Indices, said that despite the increased reliance on credit reports, the ability to apply to loans and other credit has been decreasing.
“You have to ask yourself: Is it a more reliable indicator of what you need to get in that situation than the other information that you might have?
That’s one of the biggest concerns,” she said.