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Special Report: Credit card offers back on the rise?

As many Americans are still shoveling out from under debt, banks are once again starting to send out the offers for credit cards. But why the new change?
LITTLE ROCK, AR -- Credit card offers are back in Miranda Marquit's mailbox.

"I've noticed a big difference from this year to last year," said Marquit.

That's because big banking changes are happening right now starting with an increase in credit card applications being sent out.

"Credit card issuers have come out of their shell. They're now back on offense. They are trying to grow their businesses but they're trying to do so primarily through top credit quality consumers," said bankrate.com spokesperson Greg McBride.

Miranda, who has excellent credit, is getting so many offers. Experts say if you have a credit score of above 740, now is the time to shop around for a good deal.

"If you have strong credit, you're really in the driver's seat," said McBride.

But even if the offers are coming your way, it doesn't necessarily mean you should take them.

Credit experts say compare rates being offered to what you already have.

Banks are sending applications too.

"We are seeing them reaching out and testing the waters with people who maybe have had some problems over the economic downturn or who are new to credit," said American Bankers Association representative Nessa Feddis.

Banks now make more money from people using credit versus debit cards.

"The economy has stabilized. It's more predictable about who will be able to repay their debt. They've eliminated a lot of the debt that people weren't able to pay," said Feddis.

Miranda says she's a bit hesitant to open new accounts. But she does like the attractive offers.

"I actually look at them all to see if any of them make sense for me now, but I feel like I have enough credit cards. So most of them just end up going straight to the shredder," said Marquit.

Financial experts say if you want to comparison shop for the best credit offers, be patient.

They expect card promotions and deals to increase as the year goes on, and banks will start to compete with one another.

Right now, for example, some banks are starting to advertise "no balance transfer fee" offers.
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