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Goldman Sachs reassesses Apple Card credit limits according to bias requirements



Apple CEO Tim Cook introduces Apple Card during a launch event at Apple headquarters on Monday, March 25, 2019, in Cupertino, California.

Noah Berger | AFP | Getty Images

Goldman Sachs denied allegations of gender bias and said on Monday that it would reassess the credit limits for Apple Card users on a case-by-case basis for customers who received lower credit lines than expected.

"We have not and will never make decisions based on factors such as gender," Carey Halio, CEO of Goldman's Retail Bank, said in a statement. "In fact, we do not know gender or marital status during the Apple Card application process."

Halio said that customers who are not happy with their line should contact the company.

"Based on additional information we may request, we will reconsider your credit line," the statement states.

The controversy emerged Friday when tech entrepreneur David Heinemeier Hansson wrote a series of tweets complaining that he received a credit limit 20 times higher than his wife, despite the couple filing joint tax returns.

A Goldman spokesman previously told CNBC that the problem was related to how the bank independently evaluates credit applications, allowing two family members to receive substantially different credit decisions. Goldman is looking at ways for family members to share a single Apple Card account, which will solve the problem.

In the statement Monday, Goldman said the problem stemmed from the fact that some applicants had "limited personal credit history." [1

9659002] Affected users can contact Goldman Sachs through a chat in the iPhone Wallet app or on the company's customer service number.

An algorithm problem

While Goldman said it does not make gender-based underwriting decisions, Hansson said the opaque methodology behind the card's credit decision constitutes sexism.

" My wife and I provided joint tax returns, live in a state that is jointly and has been married for a long time," tweeted Hansson along with a screenshot showing a $ 57 dollar spending limit. "Still, Apple's blackbox algorithm thinks I deserve 20 times the credit limit it does."

Apple founder Steve Wozniak said it happened to his spouse as well.

The Apple card is branded and marketed by Apple. Users sign up for the card and apply for credit in the Wallet app on iPhones, but the credit component of the product is handled by Goldman, who is pushing into consumer banking.

The New York Department of Financial Services said Monday that it initiated an investigation into Goldman's credit card practices. Halio said in the statement that the company assessed its credit process with a "third party," which is Charles River Associates, according to a Goldman Sachs representative.

An Apple representative did not return comment requests.

After Goldman issued the statement, Hansson returned to Twitter to express dissatisfaction.

"You heard nothing," he wrote. "& # 39; I understand your concerns, but here's why they are actually wrong, and we're right, don't listen. It's patronizing. Please just stop."

SE: Author of viral tweet on Apple card probe


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