Calculating optimal limits for transacting credit card customers 15:10 Fri 2 Mar, 2018 :: Horace Lamb 1022 :: Prof Peter Taylor :: University of Melbourne
Credit card users can roughly be divided into `transactors', who pay off their balance each month, and `revolvers', who maintain an outstanding balance, on which they pay substantial interest.
In this talk, we focus on modelling the behaviour of an individual transactor customer. Our motivation is to calculate an optimal credit limit from the bank's point of view. This requires an expression for the expected outstanding balance at the end of a payment period.
We establish a connection with the classical newsvendor model. Furthermore, we derive the Laplace transform of the outstanding balance, assuming that purchases are made according to a marked point process and that there is a simplified balance control policy which prevents all purchases in the rest of the payment period when the credit limit is exceeded. We then use the newsvendor model and our modified model to calculate bounds on the optimal credit limit for the more realistic balance control policy that accepts all purchases that do not exceed the limit.
We illustrate our analysis using a compound Poisson process example and show that the optimal limit scales with the distribution of the purchasing process, while the probability of exceeding the optimal limit remains constant.
Finally, we apply our model to some real credit card purchase data.