According to a report by the news agency Bloomberg, the New York tax office has started investigations against the bank Goldman Sachs, which provides the credit cards for the Apple Card. This was triggered by a tweet by David Heinemeier Hansson, the developer of the framework Ruby on Rails, who is echauffiert about the fact that his credit line exceeds that of his wife by a factor of twenty despite a common tax assessment.
The @AppleCard is such a fucking sexist program. My wife and I filed joint tax returns, live in a community-property state, and have been married for a long time. Yet Apple’s black box algorithm thinks I deserve 20x the credit limit she does. No appeals work.
— DHH (@dhh) November 7, 2019
For this reason, the Bank is accused of discriminatory distribution of credit limits based on gender. In the meantime, several users have reported similar incidents via Twitter. This includes founder Steve Wozniak, who confirms that his credit limit is ten times higher than that of his wife, even though the married couple have joint accounts.
Hansson accuses Bank Goldman Sachs of using “opaque algorithms” to determine credit lines. His wife’s credit limit has now been aligned with his credit limit without being asked, and the bank has not requested any further evidence to prove his creditworthiness. A regulatory spokeswoman explained that “the IRS will open an investigation to determine whether the New York law has been violated and to ensure that all clients are treated equally, regardless of gender.”
— GS Bank Support (@gsbanksupport) November 11, 2019
According to a statement by the responsible bank, only income and individual creditworthiness, but not gender, are taken into account when calculating the credit line.