Anyway, I've always paid promptly. Always. Always. Always. Does that matter to American Express? Apparently it does not. [Let me point out that I always pay my all my bills promptly. Always. Always. Always. So don't try to defend Amex by saying they're worried about my ability to pay based on non-payment or late payments of other bills.]
My most recent bill -- for all of about $200 -- had a closing date of May 3. I received it in the mail on May 9. It was due by May 18. In other words, if I happened to be a Luddite who paid bills by check and sent them through the mail, I'd have to pay the bill within one or two days to ensure our fairly unreliable United States Postal Service managed to have the payment in Amex's office on time.
Now, I happen to pay all my bills online, so I have a bit more leeway. That doesn't change the fact that Amex has considerably closed the gap for when payments are due. Hell, even utility companies are required to give 21 days between the time they send the bill and the payment is due. [And, yeah, screw you, I know utilities fall more into the category of necessities rather than luxuries. I don't care.]
The fact is that Amex isn't alone in doing this. I've seen my other credit card companies jack their rates not because I'm a risk but just because they can. They've shortened their grace periods, too, only not to such a glaringly evident extent as my good ole Amex.
Is anybody surprised that Amex included in its bill yet another offer for me to upgrade to a gold card? Anybody surprised that I'm not biting?