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Old 03-24-2004, 04:30   #1 (permalink)
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U.S.A.:Sam's Club offers members auto loans

Warehouse provides service through Ford's Triad Corp

By Karen Dybis / The Detroit News

Warehouse chain Samís Club is now offering auto loans to its members, creating new competition for traditional loan providers like banks, credit unions, auto manufacturers and dealers.

Other retailers, including Costco Wholesale Corp., also have added auto loans to the list of services available to their members, hoping to become a one-stop shop for all of a customerís home and financial needs.

Samís Club is providing its loans through RoadLoans, the Web division of Triad Financial Corp. Triad is a division of Ford Motor Credit Co., the worldís largest automotive finance company.

Samís Club, a division of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., is advertising the loans in its stores and on its Web site. The loansí main selling point are their low interest rates, which tend to be 1 to 2 percent below the national average.

For example, Samís Club members with sterling credit can get a 3.74 percent interest rate on a $20,000 loan over 60 months. That same loan would have a 5.22 percent interest rate nationally from most banks, according to Bankrate.com, an industry tracking firm in North Palm Beach, Fla.

Costco, Samís main competitor, has offered auto loans for about two years now through a partnership with Capital One Auto Finance, said Julie Olian, a spokeswoman for the financing company. On its Web site, Capital One Auto Finance offers 37- to 60-month loan on a new vehicle for interest rates as low as 3.85 percent.

Both Samís Club and Costco are membership warehouses, which means customers must pay a fee to shop there. Samís Club charges $35 for its basic membership, while Costco charges $45.

Samís Club goal is to bring everyday low prices to its members, said Jolanda Stewart, a spokeswoman for the warehouse store chain based in Bentonville, Ark.

Rates vary
Membership warehouses are beating the average car loan interest rate -- 5.22 percent -- offered by most U.S. banks.

Sam's Club: 3.74 percent interest rate on a $20,000 loan over 60 months.

Costco: As low as 3.85 percent interest rate; 37- to 60-month loans available.
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Old 03-29-2004, 12:53   #2 (permalink)
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Re: U.S.A.:Sam's Club offers members auto loans

Boy they are trying to dable in everything now.
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