Ask the experts: Should my credit card debt be retired, too?
News from Sacramento Bee:

Should I pay off credit cards before retirement? Where should I invest my IRA money? What are some go-to websites for financial beginners?

This week, those personal finance questions get answered by Walt Romatowski, a certified financial planner in Roseville, who’s one of our “Ask the Experts” writers.

I owe $ 40,000 in credit card debt (on eight cards). I am going to retire this year and have $ 40,000 after taxes in my savings account from work. Should I take this money and pay off my credit card debt?

You did not mention if you have adequate retirement savings and/or a pension that will provide for your normal spending during retirement, or if you have a mortgage or any other kind of debt.

Assuming that you do have adequate resources to cover your monthly expenses, it does make sense to pay off your credit cards, so that you can enter your retirement years with little or no debt.

You don’t need eight credit cards, but you should hold on to one or two major credit cards to cover life’s inevitable unexpected expenses and to maintain your credit rating.

Try to pay for most things with cash. When that’s not possible, make it a habit to pay off your credit card balances each month, so that your debt does not build up again.

Where do you recommend a retiree invest a Roth IRA?<…………… continues on Sacramento Bee

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Younger Americans might die with credit-card debt
News from Columbus Dispatch:

By  Theodore Decker

The Columbus Dispatch Tuesday January 15, 2013 6:53 AM

That Chanel handbag might be to die for, and perhaps you truly couldn’t have lived without that all-inclusive trip to Cancun.

But the credit-card debt that those purchases helped to build could be following you to the grave.

Ohio State University researchers say younger Americans appear to be taking on more credit-card debt than the generations before them and are proving to be slower in paying it off.

“If what we found continues to hold true, we may have more elderly people with substantial financial problems in the future,” said Lucia Dunn, an OSU professor of economics. “Our projections are that the typical credit-card holder among younger Americans who keeps a balance will die still in debt to credit-card companies.”

The study, written by Dunn and Sarah Jiang of Capital One Financial in McLean, Va., used data from monthly surveys to look not only at the amount of debt that consumers carried but also at the speed at which they paid it off. They wanted to determine how d…………… continues on Columbus Dispatch

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Credit card use banned inside Vatican City

Posted by administrator | 16/01/13 | Tagged Credit Card

Credit card use banned inside Vatican City
News from WNCT:

By: Anna Matranga, CBS News | 9 On Your Side

THE VATICAN – Visitors to the Vatican’s historic sites are being turned away if they don’t have cash.

Emma and Sheila Gallagher say they would have bought more Vatican souvenirs, if they could pay with plastic.

The Italian central bank has shut down credit cards and cash machines inside the Vatican.

Bank bosses say the Vatican does not have tough enough regulations in place to prevent money laundering.

The Vatican’s bank has been implicated in money-laundering scandals in the past.

Vatican officials are calling it a temporary technical problem but are not saying how soon it will be fixed.

Cash only is not just an inconvenience for tourists, it’s a financial loss for the Vatican. In 2011, tourists spent over $ 90 million at museums here.

Vatican officials say they have taken steps to fight money laundering and have appointed a top European official to oversee the effort.

And Pope Benedict has promised greater transparency in Vatican finances.

The cash-only policy is posted on…………… continues on WNCT

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Consumers Wise Up on Credit Cards
News from Fox Business:

Credit cards have long gotten a bad rap from some personal finance experts. They insist carrying plastic in your pocket is the quickest way to financial ruin and, certainly, when used incorrectly, credit cards can do major damage to your budget.

However, new data from the American Bankers Association indicates Americans may be adopting a wiser approach to credit card use. Rather than racking up big bills they cannot pay, most card holders surveyed by the ABA appeared to be keeping their spending in check and paying their bill on time each month — so much so that the number of bank card delinquencies dropped to an 18-year low in the third quarter of 2012.

Credit card bills getting paid on time, in full

As of the end of September 2012, only 2.75% of all bank card accounts were delinquent. A number that low hasn’t been seen since 1994. The ABA defines a delinquent account as one that is 30 days or more overdue.

In releasing the third-quarter numbers, the association noted the low number of bank card delinquencies is likely a result of consumer efforts to

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