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One thing not to do when trying to improve your credit score…

People with bad credit who try to improve their score by signing up for “subprime” credit cards could be doing themselves more harm than good.

Personal-finance company NerdWallet analyzed 10 popular “subprime specialist issuer” cards (SSIs), which are marketed to people who have low credit scores and may have difficulty getting a regular credit card. On average, they cost consumers more than $150 a year in annual fees, application fees and maintenance fees, NerdWallet found.

“A lot of people don’t understand how subprime cards work,” said Kimberly Palmer, a credit card expert at NerdWallet. “When you dig into the details, they can actually really hurt you.

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