You may never have heard of Merchants Credit Bureau, but chances are, it has heard of you. The Augusta-based firm provides your credit history to local banks and other businesses when you apply for loans. The company, which started as a small collection agency in 1949, started its credit-reporting operation in 1961 and has since expanded to 25 other states. Merchants Credit Bureau, at 955 Greene St., processes about 50,000 credit reports monthly through Experian, one of the three major credit-reporting bureaus.
I lost my wallet about 10 years ago somewhere on the streets of Flagstaff, Ariz.
Qualifying for a credit card, a car loan or even a mortgage is increasingly hinging on one thing -- your three-digit "credit score." The little-known numbers, assigned to you by the nation's three credit reporting bureaus, are sold to lenders to help them predict your ability to pay back borrowed money. By law, the bureaus are not required to tell you your score. That upsets some activists who say consumers ought to have a right to know.