Costco, AMEX Split 'Particularly Bitter,' CNBC's Kayla Tausche Says

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- American Express's  (AXP) "breakup" with Costco Wholesale (COST)  is "particularly bitter" because it was AMEX's idea to partner with the warehouse giant back in 1999, CNBC's Kayla Tausche said on "Closing Bell" Friday.

Costco first announced it decided not to renew its partnership with AMEX last year. Later, Costco announced Visa (V) would take its place as the only accepted credit card at its warehouses and that Citigroup  (C)  would be the exclusive issuer of its credit cards.

"It got very acrimonious toward the end. AMEX is currently trying to make up that lost business. They're trying to convince Costco shoppers to apply for other cards in the AMEX portfolio," Tausche said, but it does not appear that AMEX is making up for the loss of Costco's partnership.

Beginning on Monday all new spending will be accrued toward Visa and Citigroup, mainly because the two financial companies were willing to give much more revenue back to customers in cash, Tausche reported.

Visa and Citigroup will give 4% cash back in gas purchases versus AMEX's 3%. The companies will give 3% cash back in travel and dining purchases compared to AMEX's 2%. Visa and Citigroup will also give 2% cash back in all Costco purchases, higher than AMEX's 1% and on all other purchases, Visa and Citigroup will give 1% back whereas AMEX gave nothing back, according to CNBC.

In a $12 billion portfolio, Costco's 11 million customers were 10% of AMEX's customers and 20% of its loans. Costco is still fully responsible for paying back its card balances owed to AMEX, Tausche noted.

This weekend is the last chance to use your AMEX card at Costco warehouses.

Shares of American Express closed down by 11% to $61.86., shares of Costco closed lower by 0.34% to $155.89, Visa closed down by 1.74% to $76.99 and Citigroup closed higher by 0.85% to $42.48 on Friday.

(Costco Wholesale, Visa and Citigroup are held in Jim Cramer's charitable trust Action Alerts PLUS. See all of his holdings with a free trial.)

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