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Credit card debt up in the third quarter

Credit cards are a primary payment choice for many Americans. Credit card debt, however, can often become overwhelming when families fall on hard times. Understanding the many elements of debt negotiation and management can help families recover from debt and regain financial stability.

Our readers in Tennessee may be interested in a recent news story regarding debt in the United States. The credit-reporting agency Transunion released a report earlier this month that noted a 4.9 percent increase in the average credit card debt per borrower in the third quarter of 2012. The report indicates that the average debt per borrower now stands at just under $5,000. The number of payments 90 days or more overdue also increased over the same period last year.

The vice president of the reporting agency noted that consumers appear to be spending conservatively at this time and trying to pay off old debts. But there is some indication that the increase in debt levels may signal a corresponding increase in consumer confidence, and banks have been more lenient recently with issuing new cards.

Those who struggle to manage credit card debt may not feel very confident in their ability to repay or renegotiate their agreements. And if this is the case, the last thing a risky borrower should do is immediately go rack up more credit card debt. This can be difficult to pay.

Source: Associated Press, "Average US credit card debt per borrower up in 3Q," Alex Viega, Nov. 18, 2012

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