Entries in Kanye West (1)


Wall St. Protesters React to Russell Simmons' RushCard

Chris Polk/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) -- Hip hop mogul Russell Simmons, a presence at the Occupy Wall Street movement, has made high-fee cards directed at the working class a part of his empire.  Simmons is the founder of UniRush, the financial services company that has put the RushCard into the hands of more than 1.5 million people.

Last week, Simmons’ prepaid card was a cause of contention among protesters. Occupy Wall Street protesters asked the mogul about his credit cards. Simmons replied, “I don’t run sh*t” and “I’m ready to pay more taxes.”

The RushCard is an item Simmons has pushed as a tool to rebuild credit history.

“It’s very inexpensive, it builds credit, you can transfer your money card-to-card, you don’t have to go to Western Union and spend a fortune. You don’t have to get on line at a check cashing place,” Simmons told Forbes magazine in March.

But using prepaid cards may not be the best way to improve credit. A report from Consumers Union states, “it is not clear whether these nontraditional reporting mechanisms actually help consumers establish good credit and credit scores.” One prepaid company discloses the reporting and scoring may be effective in obtaining a mortgage, but will not help with other “loans, credit cards or insurance policies.”

Russell Simmons did not return ABC News' request for comment.

The RushCard has two plans listed on its Website: Pay As You Go and a Monthly Plan. The cards are favored by people who have trouble getting a bank account. The more expensive monthly plan for the RushCard charges prepaid users $9.95 a month and tacks on a convenience charge of $1 for every purchase made using the card. Users can add funds to the card as needed.

In a match-up of prepaid credit cards by, monthly fees for such cards ranged from $0 to $14.95.

In his recent visit to Zuccotti Park, Simmons, a self-made millionaire and philanthropist, brought Kanye West, who wore a flannel shirt and several gold chains to the event.

Following his trip, Simmons tweeted about money and fame.

“There is nothing good about fame unless it inspires happiness in others. In fact w/out this recognition it causes sadness,” he continued.

“Don’t hate the players change the game," he wrote. "I want everyone to have greater opportunity then I was afforded #occupywallstreet.”

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