Advertiser Disclosure: ValuePenguin is an advertising-supported comparison service which receives compensation from some of the financial providers whose offers appear on our site. This compensation from our advertising partners may impact how and where products appear on our site (including for example, the order in which they appear). To provide more complete comparisons, the site features products from our partners as well as institutions which are not advertising partners. While we make an effort to include the best deals available to the general public, we make no warranty that such information represents all available products.

American Express Cash Magnet® Review: A New Card, But Is It Worth Applying For?

American Express Cash Magnet® Review: A New Card, But Is It Worth Applying For?

An excellent cash back credit card, particularly for anyone interested in short-term rewards.
Editor's Rating: 4.0/5.0
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

Editor's Rating

{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

4.0/5.0

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer.

American Express recently launched the American Express Cash Magnet® and instantly we consider it one of the top cards for earning cash back rewards. However, the card isn't great for everyone and you may be ineligible for the welcome bonus that makes the card worth applying for. The American Express Cash Magnet® is a great addition to the American Express card portfolio, as it was previously missing a card with a solid all-around rewards rate.

American Express Cash Magnet® Review: A Worthwhile New Credit Card

The best thing about the American Express Cash Magnet® is that it comes equipped with one of the top welcome bonuses currently available for no annual fee cards (See Rates & Fees), at a total of $150. Although, American Express recently rolled out some changes to who it awards bonuses to, so you'll want to make sure you qualify before considering this card.

Furthermore, the American Express Cash Magnet® is easy to use, as cardholders earn 1.5% cash back on every purchase, meaning there is no need to worry about spending categories. This can be great for users who want a higher rewards rate than the standard 1% without having to put too much thought into their spending. Simplicity comes with its downsides as well, as there are other available cards, such as the Citi® Double Cash Card, that come equipped with a greater rewards rate.

One of the major downsides of the American Express Cash Magnet® is its 2.7% foreign transaction fee (See Rates & Fees), which negates any cash back you may earn while spending abroad. For example, if your foreign transaction is $100 total, you would be hit with a $2.70 fee, which is greater than the $1.50 cash back you'd earn. International travelers should consider applying for the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card instead.

Bottom Line: The American Express Cash Magnet® makes for a great everyday card and its bonus makes it an excellent pick for short-term rewards for those able to meet the spending requirements.

American Express Cash Magnet® Benefits and Features

American Express Cash Magnet® users earn 1.5% unlimited cash back on all purchases. The cash back that cardholders receive when they use the American Express Cash Magnet® is received in the form of Reward Dollars. These Reward Dollars can be redeemed for statement credits, gift cards and merchandise. Currently, there is no annual fee associated with the American Express Cash Magnet®.

On American Express' Secure Website

American Express Cash Magnet®

On American Express' Secure Website
Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on your purchases.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 15.24% to 26.24%.
  • $0 plan fees for plans set up during your first 15 months of Card Membership with Plan It®, a feature that lets you split up big purchases into monthly payments with a fixed fee.
  • You spoke, we listened. Over 1.6 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2018.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on your purchases.
  • Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 15.24% to 26.24%.
  • $0 plan fees for plans set up during your first 15 months of Card Membership with Plan It®, a feature that lets you split up big purchases into monthly payments with a fixed fee.
  • You spoke, we listened. Over 1.6 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2018.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
Annual Fee
$0
Regular APR
15.24%-26.24% Variable
Credit Needed
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"There are various types of credit scores. Each creditor uses a variety of different types of credit scores to make lending decisions."}
Good, Excellent
Editor's Rating
{"onCurrent":true,"message":"Our team rates credit cards objectively based on independent research, the features the credit card offers users, and how it compares with other available cards in its category. The ratings are the opinion of our editors, and are not influenced by any outside factors, including any compensation the site may receive from certain advertisers."}

New cardholders are eligible to earn $150 back after spending $1,000 or more in purchases on the card within their first three months of card membership.

In addition to the benefits listed above, the American Express Cash Magnet® comes equipped with all the features that come standard with American Express cards. For example, the American Express Cash Magnet® offers cardholders an extended warranty when eligible purchases are charged on the card. Furthermore, cardholders get a complimentary membership to ShopRunner, which offers free two-day shipping on eligible items through their network of more than 140 stores.

Do You Qualify for a Welcome Bonus From American Express?

If you've opened and closed a lot of credit cards in the past, you may be ineligible to receive the welcome bonus on the American Express Cash Magnet®. Recently, American Express has added language to a disclaimer which states that it may consider the number of cards you've opened or closed as well as other factors before making a decision on whether you're eligible for the welcome bonus. Thankfully, American Express alerts you to whether you qualify for the welcome bonus before it pulls your credit report. The alert allows you to cancel your application if you're deemed ineligible. This means applicants should be careful when applying for the American Express Cash Magnet® and pay close attention during the application process to see whether they're eligible for the welcome bonus on the card.

For rates and fees of the American Express Cash Magnet®, please click here.

How Does the American Express Cash Magnet® Stack Up to Other Cards?

In order to determine whether the American Express Cash Magnet® is a good card for you, you should compare it against other top cards on the market. Ultimately, whether you should apply for this card or not will depend on your spending habits.

The American Express Cash Magnet® vs. the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Both of these credit cards are very similar, namely they both offer a welcome offer of $150 provided you meet certain spending requirements. If you're a light-to-moderate spender, the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card can be a great card. Other similarities with the American Express Cash Magnet® include the fact that both cards have a $0 annual fee and a 1.5% cash back rewards rate.

As a side note, anyone who travels abroad often should consider the Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card over the American Express Cash Magnet®, as the latter carries a foreign transaction fee of 2.7%. This foreign transaction fee will effectively negate any rewards you earn while you're traveling abroad.

Consider this card if …

  • You travel internationally often.

The American Express Cash Magnet® vs. the Citi® Double Cash Card

Prospective cardholders who don't mind forgoing short-term rewards for better long-term value should consider applying for the Citi® Double Cash Card over the American Express Cash Magnet®. That's because the Citi® Double Cash Card allows cardholders to earn 1% when you buy and 1% as you make payments for those purchases, effectively a 2% cash back rate. Excluding any bonuses, the Citi® Double Cash Card will always outperform the American Express Cash Magnet® in terms of rewards rate, regardless of how much you spend.

Consider this card if …

  • You'd rather have long-term value over short-term rewards.

The American Express Cash Magnet® vs. the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Rewards maximizers and those who spend a lot of money at supermarkets, gas stations and department stores may find the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express to be a better fit over the American Express Cash Magnet®. That's because the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers cardholders 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%), 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores. The card also offers 1% cash back on purchases that fall outside of these respective categories.

The great thing about both of these cards is that they pair well, meaning cardholders can apply for both at no cost detriment since neither has an annual fee. For example, you could use the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express exclusively at the places where the card earns over 1% cash back and then use the American Express Cash Magnet® everywhere else to receive 1.5% cash back. Combined, the two cards will offer much better value than either card could provide on its own.

Consider this card if …

  • You spend a lot of money at supermarkets, gas stations and department stores.
  • You're OK with carrying two cards if it means getting a higher rewards rate.

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express, please click here.

Comments and Questions

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). ValuePenguin does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).