Skip to main content

Understanding credit cards

The context#

Until now, all of your users' credit cards are managed like standard accounts:

  • Transactions appear on these “card accounts” as soon as they appear on the bank's website.
  • At the end of the month, a debit transaction representing the total expenses made with the card during the month, is inserted in the list of transactions of the checking account linked to this card.
  • The transaction history remains on the "card account"

Several banks have a model similar to this model and there will therefore be no change for these establishments. This is described in the With card accounts chapter.

For others, the data transmitted through the APIs no longer allows us to build the "card account". This is described in the Without card account chapter.

We are actively working on implementing a new version of our API, allowing you to manage the display of upcoming transactions within your applications.

  • This version will allow you to retrieve all transactions being posted such as deferred debit card transactions during the month, transfers and direct debits to come.
  • To this new version of API, we will also add additional information at the level of the Transaction resource (status and new dates reported via the DSP2 APIs of banks).

With card accounts#

Credit Cards#

Generally speaking, transactions made with a credit card are done all along the month but are debited all at once at the end of the month. They are debited on the checking account the card is attached to. Several cards can be attached to a single checking account.

Dedicated accounts#

For all ASPSPs, credit cards are currently materialized by dedicated accounts (one account resource per credit card). Such accounts have type CREDIT_CARD. Our api exposes the link between a card and the checking account it's attached to in a field named payable_account_id.

All along the month, transactions made with a credit card appear in the corresponding CREDIT_CARD account. What happens at the time the transactions are actually debited varies depending on the ASPSP:

  • for some of them, a single transaction appear on the checking account
  • for others, all credit card transactions are "moved" from the card to the checking account

Our system guarantees transactions made with credit cards will always remain in the CREDIT_CARD accounts. They will never appear in the checking account. For ASPSPs "moving" credit card transactions from the card to the checking account, our system filters the transactions out, so that they won't appear twice (once in the card account, once in the checking account). It this case, our system will also generate a single transaction in the checking account a couple of days after the transactions were debited.

For some banks, for a few days during the month, 2 outstanding debits for the same card can overlap. You can for instance have this:

  • February 20th - End of February debit, beginning of March debit
  • March 1st - February debit is actually debited
  • March 20th - End of March debit, beginning of April debit
  • April 1st - March debit is actually debited
  • April 20th - End of April debit, beginning of May debit

In this example, between the 20th of the month N and the 1st of the month N+1, there are two outstanding debits. In that situation, the balance of the account materializing a credit card will be the sum of the 2 outstanding debits.

Credit cards and categorization#

All along the month, transactions appearing in CREDIT_CARD accounts are categorized in the different spending categories.

Single transactions appearing on the checking account when the outstanding transactions are debited will be categorized as "Out-of-budget" / "Credit Card Charge". Same thing for the transactions generated by our system.

Without card account#

For some financial institutions, the data transmitted through the APIs no longer allow us to build the “card account”. Thus, “card accounts” will no longer be updated for certain banks: “Card accounts” will change to “Not Found” status (Unavailable in API V1) and may be archived.

Deferred debit card transactions will appear directly on the checking account linked to the card.

For the banks concerned, deferred debit card transactions will only appear once the transactions have been recorded by the bank and impact the balance of the checking account.