Break-up Alert: American Express soon to move out of Costco

News of the crumbling relationship between Costco (COST) and American Express (AXP) had been out for a while and everyone knows that the day when their AmEx cards will no longer work at Costco is getting closer and closer.

And now it’s almost here, starting June 20th Costco will discontinue AmEx and begin a new era using its new co-branded Citigroup (C) Visa cards along with all other Visa branded cards will begin.

Rated C- by Weiss, American Express is losing a good chunk of its business to Citigroup as it could not meet Costco’s demand for a better credit card reward system.

Citigroup will add more business to its already impressive size. With the total assets of $1.8 trillion and market capitalization of $133.2 billion it overshadows American Express, who has $158.8 billion in total assets and market capitalization of $62.3 billion. Citigroup currently holds a C- investment rating and represents 1.3 percent of the Financials sector.

Citigroup also reports a higher profit margin and operating margin, 23.9 and 34.2 percent, respectively as compared to the 16.4 percent profit margin and 27.1 percent operating margin for American Express.

American Express finished the week down 0.4 percent trading at $64.77 a share, Citigroup was down 2.5 percent at $45.39 per share.

In two weeks Citi Visa cards will take over Costco stores offering much more than AmEx could. The new Costco and Citi co-branded card holder benefits will include more generous reward system allowing members to rack up the extra points much faster and turn it into cash … and, Costco hopes, spend it all in store again.

Costco holds a B (BUY) rating from Weiss after being downgraded from B+ in December of 2015, trading at $151.71 per share after going up 2 percent during the last week.


Ford Motor Co. (F) and General Motors Co. (GM) reported lower than expected May vehicle sales sending stock prices down in the early trading hours on Wednesday, June 1. Ford ended the day down 2.4 percent trading at $13.11 per share and GM was down 3 percent at $30.22 per share. Both, Ford and GM ended the week down 3.3 and 5.4 percent respectively.

Fiat Chrysler (FCAU) was the only big auto manufacturer with a small increase in sales. It was down 0.4 percent on Wednesday trading at $7.04 a share.

A few things might be to blame here for underperforming GM and Ford vehicle sales. One: increasing oil prices, although not by much, it might have been enough to drive people away from buying Ford or GM trucks, which is a big selling item for both companies. Two: GM factories in Japan experiencing a shortage of parts and interruption of normal operations due to recent earthquakes.

Ford was upgraded to a C (HOLD) by Weiss on May 6, GM also holds a C rating after a downgrade on April 5, and Fiat Chrysler holds an E+ (SELL) rating.


Knowing how a fund performed during an economic downturn or upturn may be crucial when picking the right mix of investments for your portfolio. Some investments can actually gain value during the tough times and drop during the good.

Indicators such as the last bear market return and the last bull market return can give you an idea of how a fund might perform in a similar economic situation in the future based on its previous experiences.

We have created a custom screener for you to see such data on all Weiss rated ETFs. All funds on our list are sorted by asset size from largest to smallest.

Please note that funds with a more recent inception date may not have a last bull or bear returns because they are too new to have experienced such economic conditions.

Mutual Funds

Safeguard your hard earned cash by ensuring that you only invest in the funds that fit your needs the best. Weiss Ratings can help you do just that.

With investment ratings on over 27,000 mutual funds we help empower you to make informed financial decisions on how your money gets invested.

You can pick a fund that fits what you’re looking for and from there you can simply click on Similar Funds tab to see alike funds.

Compare your selection against the industry or against other mutual funds and see the difference.


Banks both big and small strive for growth and success by looking to book better loans to reduce risk and increase assets.

Asset growth is one measure that compares the total assets held by an institution in a given period to its total assets from a previous period.

Using Weiss Ratings Bank Screener we’ve prepared a list of all rated banks to show their one and five-year asset growth. The list is sorted by asset size from largest to smallest.

Click here to see this extensive list.

You may also explore ratings and analysis on over 6,000 U.S. banks.

Credit Unions

Did you know that credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives that focus on member service and not the profits? All credit unions are exempt from the federal income tax, but they do pay sales, property and payroll taxes. A complete federal tax exemption status was established in 1937 as part of an amendment to the Federal Credit Union Act.

The tax exempt status allows credit unions to serve their local communities without charging high interest rates and often offer accounts free of any service fees. The money saved in federal taxes is mainly used to serve members who may not be able to afford to bank with major banks.

Find your credit union’s rating by visiting Weiss Ratings credit union web page. Or, if you’re looking for a credit union near you, check out our Credit Union Screener, where you can add state and city as your criteria to see what’s around the corner.

If you need help navigating our website and using our tools, please visit the Weiss Ratings Help Center.


The hurricane season is here (officially started on June 1st ) and if you live in an area that may get hit by one, you should review your homeowners insurance policy and know your coverage and what out of pocket costs you may incur if your home gets damaged.

You are already too late to seek coverage for Tropical Storm Colin that formed in the Gulf this morning. It is expected to impact the North and East coasts of Florida on Monday all the way down to Venice before moving into Georgia towards Savannah and then Charleston, South Carolina. Normally you need to have coverage 30 days before a storm, and don’t forget that flood coverage may well be separate to windstorm coverage.

Be sure to visit our website to see your insurer’s safety rating and check out the Recommended Homeowners Insurer’s list to see if your company is on it.

Also, be sure to let your insurer know if you recently installed new windows or doors, or even a new home security system. All of those items may reduce your premium as it makes your home safer.

Even if you don’t live in an area affected by hurricanes, there are other perils that you must have coverage for, so familiarize yourself with your homeowner’s insurance policy to get the most out of it.

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