Mastercard interest rates are 9.99% to 36%, depending on the card and each applicant’s creditworthiness. Nearly all Mastercard interest rates are variable rather than fixed. Variable rates are tied to an index rate, usually the prime rate that banks use for their most creditworthy customers. Setting specific interest rates is a card issuer’s job, though, not Mastercard’s.
Generally, the better your credit history, the better the interest rate. For example, the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card interest rate ranges from 13.99% to 23.99% Variable, depending on your credit. Credit card type also affects the interest rate. Most secured credit cards offer a single rate, like the Secured Mastercard® from Capital One: 26.99% (V). Rewards cards like the Citi Premier® Card – 15.99% to 23.99% (V) – often have higher maximum interest rates to compensate for the additional benefits. This could also be a sign that more than just people with good credit can get approved.
Credit cards will always have multiple interest rates. There are separate rates for purchases, balance transfers, cash advances and late payments. Cash advance APRs range from 24.99% to 26.99%. Penalty interest rates for late payments can be a maximum of 29.99%. The Citi Simplicity® Card - No Late Fees Ever doesn't have a penalty interest rates, for example.
If a Mastercard with the lowest possible interest rate is your priority, you may need to look beyond the big banks and explore options from credit unions. Credit unions have specific membership requirements, so check to make sure you’re eligible.