Should dollar amounts match on CC payment and CC balance
I've been pretty busy and haven't reconciled in a few weeks (never again). I just noticed that my Am Ex balance and what is available to pay on the card is different (I'm short $203.22). Should these amounts always match? I think so, but I am checking with you all.
If you are a Paid In Full (PIF) CC user, yes. The money available to pay your CC should always match your (negative) CC account's working balance. That means all your purchases are backed by cash, and you could pay off the card to $0 at any time (most people just pay the statement balance when it's due, though, for several reasons).
If you don't have as much in your CC category as is owed on your CC account, then you have debt without a plan to pay it off.
Whether you have to pay interest on it to the credit card company depends on if you have enough in your CC category to fulfill the statement balance when it is due.
If the amount in your CC category is less than your statement balance when it's due, then you'll be incurring interest and carrying debt from one statement to the next.
Of course, at any time, you can reallocate money among categories to change your CC paying ability.
If you were previously PIF, and especially if you paid your card to $0 or had some big returns, there are a few things that can cause the category to become out of sync with the account. The simplest solution is to budget so you're back to PIF status.