US Credit Card Use on the Rise

Posted by administrator | 05/07/12 | Tagged Credit Card

US Credit Card Use on the Rise
News from Banktech:

U.S. credit card volume increased by $ 185 billion in 2011, while debit and prepaid volume increased by $ 199 billion, according to a research report released today by MasterCard.

The report, titled “Smarter Spending and Saving: Evolution in U.S. Consumer Behavior,” noted that the growth is due to changing consumer spending habits, evolving strategies on the part of merchants and financial institutions and a continued migration to electronic media at the expense of cash and checks.

According to the report, debit and prepaid’s growth came both from an increase in spending and at the expense of cash and checks. MasterCard estimates that $ 138 billion (75 percent) of credit’s 2011 gain was due to an increase in consumer spending. This is a result of rising prices and increased confidence on the part of consumers, the company said. In contrast to 2010, discretionary purchases in 2011 were not a key driver of incremental growth. Approximately $ 13 billion (7 percent) in growth likely derived from small business owners using their personal credit cards to supplement credit lines, or because they were unable to obtain a business credit card.

Another factor leading to the increase in consumer spending was that 2011 was not a year of cutting down debt and reducing household budgets, as 2009 and 2010 were.

…………… continues on Banktech
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Police seek help finding suspects after fraudulent credit card use
News from Aiken Standard:

Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying these two female suspects who allegedly could be involved in fraudulent credit card transactions.

The Aiken Department of Public Safety is asking for the public’s help in identifying two female suspects who allegedly could be involved in fraudulent credit card transactions.

Th credit card transactions last month. Anyone with information related to the identity of the women or their possible location is asked to call Aiken Public Safety at (803) 642-7620 or Crimestoppers at 888-CRIME-SC. Callers can receive a cash reward between $ 50 to $ 1,000.

…………… continues on Aiken Standard
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Overdue bills on credit cards, consumer debt, drop to 2007 level
News from HeraldNet:

Published: Thursday, July 5, 2012, 12:01 a.m.

WASHINGTON — The portion of consumers with payments overdue on credit cards, auto loans and other debt dropped in the first three months of the year to the lowest level since 2007, according to the American Bankers Association.

Overall, the percentage of consumer loans that were at least 30 days overdue dropped to 2.35 percent in the January-through-March period, down from 2.49 percent in the last quarter of 2011. It was the best performance since the second quarter of 2007, and put consumer delinquencies below the 15-year average of 2.4 percent, the group said.

At the worst point during the Great Recession and its aftermath, about 3.35 percent of consumer loans were overdue.

“Consumers have done a remarkable job getting their finances under control,” said James Chessen, chief economist for the ABA. “Overall debt levels have declined dramatically, and savings continue to grow. This means many consumers have more capacity to absorb a financial shock, and that’s a good place to be.”

The group’s quarterly Consumer Credit Delinquency Bulletin tracks overdue payments in 11 categories. Ten of those categories showed improvements in the first quarter, which Chessen said was remarkable given the sharp increase in gas prices in the first three months of the year.

Consumers showed great improvement on cre…………… continues on HeraldNet

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Survive This Economy: Tackling Credit Card Debt
News from CBS2 Chicago:

Montage Of Credit Cards. (AP Graphic)

CHICAGO (CBS) – The Wright family is celebrating more than just the 4th of July today, they are celebrating their biggest payoff ever since CBS 2 started following their effort to “Survive This Economy” eight months ago.

CBS 2′s Dorothy Tucker explains how the suburban family is saving more than $ 500.

Sinora Wright has paid off a credit card, on which she once owed $ 1,200.

“Greatest feeling it the world,” she said of the accomplishment.

It’s a goal she achieved by paying more than the monthly minimum on the $ 1,200 debt.

She saved $ 575 in interest by sending in $ 200 a month for seven months to pay off the balance, rather than the monthly minimum of $ 41, which would have taken nearly four years to pay off the full debt.

Personal finance blogger and author Matt Bell said, “They’ve obviously made a change to start getting out of debt, which is not easy for people to do.”

Sinora said she was able to accomplish that goal by, “Saving on the little things, like our water bill, our electric bill, cutting back on eating out. … Also just being focused, and doing all those things, and setting it as a priority.”

With a pile of other credit card bills that still total more $ 20,000, Sinora and her husband Marcus now plan to…………… continues on CBS2 Chicago

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