MEAB Note: I published this six hours early because of the time critical nature of the content, we’ll be back on the regular schedule Thursday.

A bomb has been slowly exploding since Friday, and it’s now become clear what the common thread is: American Express has begun shutting down all accounts for cardholders that opened a business credit card with Adam Winslow. If you’ve opened a card with him, I’d suggest that you drop everything you’re doing and cash out or transfer all of your American Express Membership Rewards right now. If you can’t login because you’ve been shutdown, you can call the number on the back of your card to get this done if you’re quick.

Again, I’d suggest doing this right now if you’ve opened a card with Adam; if you don’t, you’re likely to lose all of your Membership Rewards and have a tough time ever geting any value out of what was lost.

The Player

Who is Adam Winslow? He’s an American Express employee and card sales representative responsible for opening small business credit cards. He’s one of a small team of American Express small business sales representatives. I’m told that each of the members of this team are assigned to specific set of zip codes within their own region, and that Adam’s region is in the southwest US (he’s based in Arizona). When one of the team members opens a card, they earn a commission.

According to inside sources, Adam allegedly: overstepped his bounds within in the team, aggressively jumped into other representatives regions, and didn’t honor internal processes. Also, allegedly Adam may have bypassed internal checks and balances in order to push credit card applications out of the way of internal system validation. I’ve also been told that he was allegedly put in another role for about a year due to bad behavior, and at some point he may have needed supervisory approval for any new applications he brought into American Express.

Furthermore, I’ve been told that allegedly Adam would proactively reach out to current cardholders to see if they’d like to open another card or two, sometimes monthly. These cards often bypassed all internal American Express limits, and now we may have a clue as to why they bypassed those limits.

The Fallout

We’ve heard from cardholders who do heavy MS that they were shutdown, but we’ve also heard of cardholders doing nothing but organic and business spending that they were also shutdown. People with big balances have gotten the axe, and so have people with small balances. This one seems completely unrelated to any shenanigans on the cardholder’s part, and almost certainly caused by shenanigans on Adam’s part. The first shutdown I saw was on Friday and reports of more and more have been trickling in since then.

In a private forum discussing the shutdowns, reader Paul shared an article and gave me permission to share it here, and there’s a possibility that it’s related to what’s happening: Amex reveals U.S. probes into business, consumer cards sales practices

I’ve never talked to Adam or opened a card with him, so I believe that I’m safe, I hope you’re in the same boat with me. If you weren’t one of the lucky ones, my sincere condolences, this situation sucks.

Stay safe friends!

A picture of a weird scrambled eggs concoction that looks very unappetizing.
An American Express scramble. Was this made by Adam? I kinda doubt it, but the results are awful here too.

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