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We build a bridge between relationship lending and transactions lending – investigating relationship effects on contract terms for credit cards, a relatively pure transactions lending technology. Using one million+ accounts, we find during normal times, consumers with relationships obtain better terms, but small businesses with relationships do not. Both groups obtain improved terms during COVID-19, consistent with intertemporal smoothing – relationship borrowers obtain more favorable terms during crises, paid for by worse terms in normal times. Among other findings, CARES Act impediments to reporting consumer delinquencies to credit bureaus designed to protect customers reduced informational value of credit scores, penalizing safer consumers.

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