JPMorgan sued over 'sky-high' fees for cryptocurrency buys

Automobiles pass a JP Morgan Chase building in New York. (Frank Franklin II, AP, File)
Automobiles pass a JP Morgan Chase building in New York. (Frank Franklin II, AP, File)

New York - JPMorgan Chase & Co was sued for charging "sky-high" interest rates and fees to customers who used their credit cards to buy cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.

Brady Tucker, a Chase credit-card customer in Idaho, claims the bank began treating his cryptocurrency buys as cash advances in January rather than purchases, and charging him interest rates of as much as 30% a year and additional fees.

Tucker, who is seeking class-action status for the suit filed on Tuesday in federal court in Manhattan, said he had routinely made purchases of cryptocurrency through Coinbase and other exchanges on his credit card and would pay them off by the end of the billing cycle without incurring finance charges. He says he and other credit-card holders were "duped".

"Chase silently smacked them with instant-cash-advance fees, plus much higher interest rates than normal, and left them without any recourse," Tucker said in his suit, which seeks a refund of all related fees plus $1m in damages.

Representatives of JPMorgan Chase didn’t immediately respond to a call seeking comment.

An increasing number of banks that issue credit cards are taking measures to limit or block cryptocurrency purchases.

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