Jamie Dimon Wishes the Sapphire Reserve Cost Chase More Money. Here are 24 Suggestions to Make That Happen!

Last month, there was an article on Bloomberg about how the Chase Sapphire Reserve card reduced Chase’s profit by almost $300 million dollars due to the lucrative signup bonus and features on the card. While the figure seems high at first glance, it apparently wasn’t good enough. Yesterday there was an article on CNBC (h/t Chuck) about how Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, wishes the card cost Chase even more money! Jamie was quoted as saying “The card was so successful it cost us $200 million, but we expect that to have a good return on it. I wish it was a $400 million loss.”

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Now Jamie, I’m sure you have a high priced team of finance guys crunching the numbers behind this card but as a finance major myself, I’d thought I’d offer some free suggestions on how you could achieve your goal. In fact, I have 24 suggestions for you, though please pay special attention to suggestion # 5/24.

  1. The signup bonus – a 100,000 points. Been there, seen that. Want to be remembered as a legend in the credit card space? How about a 500,000 point signup bonus – Go big or go home.
  2. Make the card out of an actual sapphire (metal is so 2010).
  3. Increase The Points Guy commission’s to $1,000 per approved applicant so he afford another website redesign.
  4. Or so he can hire more staff to cover “breaking news”. I think he might have just posted about that JetBlue vacation deal.
  5. How about eliminating the 5/24 rule so everyone can get the card? I promise you will literally have thousands of people signing up the card the millisecond that rule is revoked.
  6. Amex has their own lounges – how about a network of Chase lounges accessible by Reserve members only?
  7. Might I suggest calling it the Sapphire Lounge? And no, do not call the JFK and/or LGA lounge Sapphire New York (might get a slightly different impression than intended….) Or if you want to do something with Sapphire New York, maybe offer 10x points earned on every dollar spent there?
  8. Stop having unattractive bloggers selling the shit of this card all day. Hire the Victoria Secret Angels and let them go to work.
  9. Every card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees these days. Take the next step and pay customers to charge items in foreign currencies!
  10. Run a contest and see which Boarding Area blog can sell the most Sapphire Reserve cards in a single day. Winner gets a personalized Reserve card with Jamie’s face on it.
  11. Increase the transfer ratio for Hyatt from 1:1 to 1:3. Chase will spend 3x more on buying Hyatt points!
  12. Offer a get 2 cards, annual fee on 1 is free deal?
  13. Every card seems to offer Global Entry credit nowadays. How about adding a benefit to skip immigration/customs altogether (note you may have to consult Mr. Trump on this…)
  14. Pay Lucky to rename his blog “One Chase Card at a Time”.
  15. Don’t give out 100,000 points. How about 100,000 dollars instead?
  16. Did I mention revoking the 5/24 rule already? Ya know, I’m not upset about not getting the card or anything like that….
  17. Increase the annual travel credit to monthly. Gamechanger. 
  18. And instead of $300, make it $10,000. Private helicopter rides to the Hampton are very expensive Mr. Dimon.
  19. Remove the decimal and have points be worth 15 cents instead of 1.5 cents towards travel. 
  20. Increase the commission you pay to MMS so they can blog like they used back in 2012 (seriously this was a great blog back in the day).
  21. Ditch IHG as a partner and add the Virgin Limited Edition hotels as a transfer partner. 50,000 points equals one week on Necker Island?
  22. Fine don’t fully revoke 5/24…just make it not applicable for this card only. Pretty please?
  23. 20,000 points if you add an authorized user. 30,000 points if it’s your dog. 
  24. Lastly, don’t drop the signup bonus to 50,000 points online. Seems crazy I know but maybe keeping it at 100,000 points online will cost Chase just a bit more money like you hope. Have your finance guys double check this one. 

There you go Jamie, twenty four well-thought, foolproof AND expensive suggestions to further reduce Chase’s profit. Now next time you have some big news to drop, I hope you’ll consider PointsCentric as your spokesperson instead.

My Unbiased Opinion: Yes, You Should Get a Sapphire Reserve Card Before the Online Signup Bonus Decreases to 50k Next Week

The big news that TPG broke yesterday was that 100,000 point signup bonus on the Chase Sapphire Reserve card will be decreasing to 50,000 points on January 12th, though it will remain at 100,000 points for in branch applications till March 12th. Frankly, I’m surprised that the 100,000 bonus lasted this long especially with the card so in demand Chase ran out of the special metal alloy to make the card. Now that we have a known end date for this offer, if you are under Chase’s 5/24 rule and/or are pre-approved for this card, I think it is a sound financial decision to apply for this card before the 100,000 signup bonus goes away. And to show that, I am going to present the numbers from an extreme point of view.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

*Quick side note: I generally don’t put up these types of posts telling people what to do (I’ll leave that to the affiliate bloggers telling you to get every credit card under the sun) but when I see a good deal worth discussing and presenting my own angle on it, I like to bring attention to it for my readers’ sake – something affiliate bloggers struggle with.*

To prove this is a sound financial decision, I am going to assume the extreme, worst case scenario – you don’t travel ever, have no need for the points for anything travel related, no use for the $300 travel credit or any of the other perks. The cash outflow is pretty straightforward – it’s the annual fee of $450.

Now for the cash inflow, this is where it gets interesting. Did you know you can redeem Chase UR points at a value of a penny per point for cash directly into your checking account? Guess what 100,000 points can get you? $1,000.00 cash deposited directly into your checking or savings account. Actually you would have 104,000 points after meeting the minimum spend (again worse case – assuming no bonus category spending!) so that’s actually $1,040.00.

Straight cash homie...

Straight cash homie…

Remember the $300 travel credit which you thought was worthless since you don’t travel? You could buy American Airlines gift cards and re-sell them to an exchange at 81.5% of face value easily. Or buy and re-sell Marriott gift cards at 80.5% if you prefer (though I don’t why you would). It is an easy, quick process to sell the cards to these exchanges so that’s another $244.50 in the bank. But it gets better because you can actually do this twice because the travel credit is annual, resetting with the close of your December statement. So if you opened the card now, used the $300 travel credit in say March and your last statement closes something in early December, you can use the $300 travel credit again before next year’s annual fee comes due! You can also call Chase and have them move up the statement date to ensure this happens. That’s another $244.50 in the bank.  And actually you just earned another 1,800 points for spending $600 across the two travel credits, which is worth $18. The final numbers are…

Cash Outlay:

  • – $450 for the annual fee

Cash Inflow:

  • + $1,040.00 cash (signup bonus)
  • + $244.50 (first travel credit)
  • + $244.50 (second travel credit)
  • + $18.00 (points earned for buying gift cards and using travel credits)

Net Inflow: $1,097.00

The above shows that for opening a single credit card a person could reap rewards at the very minimum of almost $1,100 in cold hard cash! Now if you travel even just a little bit or can redeem the points in a more valuable way (such as transferring to airline/hotel partners or redeeming at a value of 1.5 cents a point for travel directly through Chase), then your net inflow is even larger.

Summary:

Obviously I had a little fun writing this post and showing the benefits from a very non-traditional point of view as I truly do think this card is one of the best on the market… even if you are not a traveler. I hope I don’t come across like an affiliate blogger in this post as you can clearly see I don’t have any affiliate links or any links to the card in general. In fact, I strongly debated on whether to even write this post as I didn’t want to send the “wrong message” but I decided to because it benefits my readers who may have been on the fence about the card (plus it was kinda fun to write).

Due to 5/24 and not being pre-approved, I’m on the sidelines for this deal but is anyone who is eligible going to get the card who doesn’t have it already?

Datapoint: The New Chase Ink Preferred Business Card is Subject to the 5/24 Rule

This is probably not a surprise to most of you reading this but I can now confirm that the new Chase Ink Preferred business card is subject to the 5/24 rule as I got my denial letter in the mail yesterday.

chase-ink-preferred-5_24-rule

For a bit of background, the Chase Ink Preferred is a new business card from Chase that technically isn’t available to the public yet. It will have a 80,000 point signup bonus though it does not offer 5x categories. Interestingly, just as it happened with the Sapphire Reserve before it officially launched, last week two rouge links were found (and posted to this Reddit thread) that allowed you to apply for the card. The big unknown was whether this card would be subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule even though the prevalent thought was it would be, based on other Ink products being subject to this rule.

That said, this was potentially a big development as folks who applied for the Sapphire Reserve via those leaked links before it was officially launched were able to bypass the 5/24 rule and get the 100k signup bonus. There was hope that these links for the Ink Preferred would follow those some guidelines and give folks like myself who are way over 5/24, a chance to get the card. In this case, the landing page showed no mention of the signup bonus but I felt confident (along with others) that Chase would match the bonus so I wasn’t worried about that. Instead, I gambled that the chance of this link working to bypass the 5/24 rule and earn 80k Chase UR points was worth the cost of a hard pull.

In the end, I obviously lost out but for me, it was still worth the gamble as frankly, one hard pull doesn’t matter much to me at this point and the potential reward was almost $1,500 worth of points depending how you value them. Just remember, “You miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take” — Wayne Gretzky — Michael Scott.

 

New Chase Reconsideration Line Phone Number

You might want to bookmark this post for future reference as it appears the reconsideration phone number for Chase cards has changed. Per Reddit, it appears the old reconsideration number of 1-888-245-0625 is no longer in service but there is a new, working reconsideration number which is 1-888-270-2127. I’ve confirmed the old number is not in service and this new number takes you to a Chase credit analyst. This number is working for both personal and business cards.

Frankly, it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if this was a result of the volume of calls received on pending/denied applications for the Chase Sapphire Reserve. I mean interest in the card is so popular they ran out of metal to make the card….

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Once you start applying for several credit cards, you’ll undoubtedly need this number as it is tougher now to get an instant approval with Chase. If you are eligible for a Chase card (i.e under 5/24 or applying for a card not subject to 5/24) and get a pending message, I recommend calling this number to figure out what can be done to approve the application. Many times the representative will state Chase can’t extend you any more credit but will allow you to shift credit from an existing card to the new one to get it approved.

Good luck with all the reconsideration calls!

Denied for the Chase Sapphire Reserve Even with a “Pre-Approval” Offer

I know I’ve posted a lot about the Chase Sapphire Reserve over the past week and while I thought I was done talking about the card, I have one more post about the card and unfortunately it contains a negative data point. As many of you know, the only current known 5/24 workarounds to get this card are if you are Chase Private Chase member or have a pre-approval offer in branch. My wife and I are not Chase Private Clients members but luckily my wife had a pre-approval offer (or so we thought) for the Sapphire Reserve (I did not). She went to the branch and ultimately was denied for the card after her application went to pending. Here is a complete timeline of the events and I’ll share some further thoughts at the end.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

  • On Thursday, I went to a Chase branch in NYC and the banker confirmed that I had no pre-approval offers. I asked if he would look up the same for my wife and when I gave him my wife’s Freedom card, he specifically confirmed she was pre-approved for the Sapphire Reserve card.
  • My wife obviously couldn’t apply then since she wasn’t there so on Saturday we visited our local Chase branch on Long Island. The banker also confirmed she was pre-approved for the Sapphire Reserve as well as the Slate card and a United card (he didn’t specify which one). I again had no pre-approvals.
  • With two bankers apparently confirming the pre-approvals, my wife pulled the trigger on the application in branch and the banker informed her she had a pending decision.
  • Knowing what this meant, I asked the banker to call to see if maybe there was an outside shot of any additional information needed but sadly after getting reconsideration on the phone, he came back and said she was denied for “having over 5 recent accounts”.

The best explanation I can think for this is that my wife wasn’t truly pre-approved despite what the bankers stated. On Reddit, a helpful user suggested looking at the APR section of the printout the banker provides when you sign to apply for the card. It should have a fixed APR % not a range – anything other than a fixed APR % indicates you truly are not pre-approved for the card. You might be invited to apply or pre-qualified but these will not work to get past 5/24 – sadly this is apparently what happened to my wife.

So what do I recommend to do? In short, challenge your local banker to make sure you are actually pre-approved and request a copy of the full printout before signing the application (that was another issue I later learned – I only saw the first two pages and not the pages with the APR on them). There are some Chase bankers out there who don’t know this product or process well enough and if you run into my local banker on Long Island, you will end up wasting a hard pull for nothing. I wish I had known this about 3 hours ago but c’est la vie….