I think it's better to find out when they report to credit bureaus, pay before that date
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That was my first thought too. However, after research, I learned more.
Based on my conversations with them, usually the creditors report to bureaus a few days after the new statement is sent. But you can't count on that - one of my creditor namely Capital One reports on the last day of the statement (so, based on the graphic, 9th). The information sent to the bureaus is same as in the statement, i.e. same balance, CL, whether late or on time, etc. I also saw that the bureau-reports (ones that we order directly through them) are likely to contain the correct dates. Usually these reports have two dates: 'Date updated' and 'Last payment made'. Reports that we get from CCT or CK or elsewhere may have any scheme of dates and are not reliable at all.
Bottom line, bureau reports will contain my statement balance. So my target must be to make sure that this reported number be $0 (of course that is given I am wanting to PIF under situation A described above - many folks may be in different situations, which is outside the discussion).
When would a creditor report to bureaus? Tough question for an exact answer - a CSR can't be trusted there and unless you have a consistent statistic from multiple 'ordered' reports, I won't know how to get that figure. But from what I realized, the bureaus will be provided statement balances only by creditors. So best strategy is, to ensure that my payments post* by the statement date AND I don't incur new purchases during that time.
* Payment made on the 7th will post on 8th.