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A "credit balance" means that he OWES them the thirty-eight cents. It's on their books in the Credit column of the Accounts Receivable account.

If they adjusted it, and told him not to pay it, then they basically just gave him the money.

Sorry, xtn, you're incorrect on this. The money that the consumer owes to the credit card company is 'the balance' - not 'the credit balance'. Payments on credit cards are 'credited' to the account to pay 'the balance'. If too much is 'credited' toward 'the balance' due to an overpayment, the money owed to the consumer becomes 'the credit balance'.

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