American Express Cash Magnet Review

We want to help you make more informed decisions. Some links to products on this page will take you to a partner website and may result in us earning a referral commission. For more information, see How We Make Money.

American Express Cash Magnet® Card

American Express Cash Magnet® Card

Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site
Rewards rate:

Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on your purchases.

  • Intro bonus: $150
  • Annual fee: $0
  • Regular APR: 13.99%-23.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit score: 670-850 (Good to Excellent)

The American Express Cash Magnet card is a great entry-level credit card, a no-frills choice that earns 1.5% cash back on every purchase.

While its simple earning structure can be a selling point, there are other cards on the market that can help you save even more on your everyday purchases.

At a Glance

  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases
  • No annual fee
  • $150 statement credit after spending $1,000 in the first three months
  • 0% introductory APR on purchases for the first 15 months, and 13.99% to 23.99% variable APR after that (see rates and fees)
  • 2.7% foreign transaction fee

Pros

  • 1.5% cash back on all purchases

  • No annual fee

  • Access to Amex Offers program

  • Complimentary ShopRunner membership

Cons

  • No bonus categories

  • 2.7% fee on foreign transactions

  • No access to Amex Membership Rewards program

Additional Card Details

This card also offers other useful perks, particularly when it comes to retail.

Since it’s an American Express card, you’ll have access to the Amex Offers program. Amex Offers are targeted discounts at many popular stores and retailers. All you have to do is spend a certain amount of money, as specified in each individual offer, and you’ll either get a statement credit or earn bonus Rewards Dollars.

Like every American Express consumer or small-business card, this one also comes with a complimentary ShopRunner membership. (You’ll have to enroll your card to participate.) ShopRunner is a service that offers free two-day shipping from major retailers, including Bloomingdale’s, Saks Off Fifth, Neiman Marcus and more. Membership costs $79 otherwise.

The card also comes with purchase protection, which can help you recoup the price of items you purchased if they are broken or stolen. If you find yourself in that situation, American Express will reimburse you, even if the date to return the item has passed.

Like many major credit cards, the Amex Cash Magnet Card comes with car rental loss and damage insurance, up to $50,000 per rental agreement. Note that this does not include liability insurance. 

Should You Get this Card?

This is a straightforward cash back card. If you’re looking for a no annual fee card and a way to save a bit of money here and there, this card could be worth looking into. It’s also an entry-level card and is a decent pick if you have a good credit score, defined as 670 and above. It could be worthwhile to get this card to familiarize yourself with the perks and responsibility of having a credit card, while building up your credit for a card with more bells and whistles that requires an excellent credit score.

It also offers solid retail perks, mentioned above, such as the complimentary ShopRunner membership and purchase protection.

Another valuable factor is the card’s welcome offer: A $150 statement credit after spending $1,000 in the first three months of account opening. This offer can change and vary based on other factors, so be sure to check and confirm what applies to you. While it’s far from the most valuable offer on the market either way, spending about $333 per month and getting a $150 statement credit is a solid deal.

Still, there are better cards on the market for pure cash back earnings. For example, the Chase Freedom Unlimited card also does not have an annual fee, but its earning structure comes with bonus categories: 5% cash back when booking travel through the Chase portal, 3% on dining and at drugstores, and 1.5% on everything else. And as with any American Express card, it isn’t as universally accepted as a Visa or Mastercard.

How to Use the American Express Cash Magnet

Since the Amex Cash Magnet card earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases, it’s a good card to use  for everything you buy, if it’s the only card you have. But since this card has a 2.7% foreign transaction fee, we don’t recommend using it for any purchases while abroad. There are other cards that do not charge foreign transaction fees and are a better choice for international travel.

It doesn’t have any bonus categories, so you won’t get any additional cash back for purchases you might make often, such as dining and travel. If you do have another card that earns either more cash back or travel rewards points on different bonus categories, we recommend using it for those purchases, and the Cash Magnet card on everything else.

To use your cash back, you’ll be awarded what Amex calls Reward Dollars, which you can put toward a statement credit, merchandise or even gift cards. You’ll need at least $25 worth of Reward Dollars for a redemption.

You can further maximize this card by taking advantage of its 0% interest introductory offer on purchases for the first 15 months (13.99% – 23.99% variable APR thereafter). If you have a large upcoming purchase and want the flexibility to pay it off without interest over time and earn a bit of cash back, this can be a solid option.

American Express Cash Magnet Compared to Other Cards

American Express Cash Magnet® Card

American Express Cash Magnet® Card

  • Intro bonus:
    $150
  • Annual fee:
    $0
  • Regular APR:
    13.99%-23.99% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site
Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Chase Freedom Unlimited®

  • Intro bonus:
    $200
  • Annual fee:
    $0
  • Regular APR:
    14.99% – 23.74% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site
Citi® Double Cash Card

Citi® Double Cash Card

  • Intro bonus:
    No current offer
  • Annual fee:
    $0
  • Regular APR:
    13.99% – 23.99% (Variable)
  • Recommended credit:
    740-850 (Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon at our partner’s secure site

All information about the Citi Double Cash Card has been collected independently by NextAdvisor and has not been reviewed by the issuer.

Bottom Line

EDITORIAL INDEPENDENCE

As with all of our credit card reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships.

This is a solid beginner credit card, and is worth your attention if you’re looking for a no-annual-fee cash back credit card. Since it earns 1.5% cash back on everything, it’s an easy way to save money on all of your purchases, without any special bonus categories that earn extra rewards. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the minimum credit score required for the Amex Cash Magnet?

You’ll need a good credit score or higher for this card — a score of 670 should work, but 700 or higher is ideal. Issuers have the final say on whom they issue credit to, based on several factors, so there’s no guarantee that a given score will get you a card. 

Do you earn Membership Rewards points with the Amex Cash Magnet?

No, with this card you do not earn American Express Membership Rewards points that you can use for travel. It earns 1.5% cash back on every purchase, in the form of Reward Dollars that can be used in a variety of ways, such as getting a statement credit.

Can you use Reward Dollars toward your minimum payment?

No, you cannot use Reward Dollars earned for your minimum payment. We also advise paying off any card’s statement balance in full every month, to avoid interest charges which might negate the value of your cash back.