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Young Americans reduce credit card debt

Since the recession, Americans, including those in New Jersey, in the 18-to-29 age group have held fewer credit cards. In 2007, only 8 percent of this group was without credit cards, but in 2012, the number of non-card holders had increased to 16 percent. Correspondingly, the card debt among this group of consumers has decreased by nearly $1,000 from $3,073 to $2,087 per person on average.

Having seen many of their parents struggle through credit card debt during the recession, these younger people are opting for debit cards instead. Furthermore, the Card Act of 2010 has made it very difficult for those under the age of 21 to qualify for credit cards by requiring co-signers or high-income levels.

In addition to overall debt falling, this younger age group has also seen a decline in mortgage debt. And those with excellent credit scores of 760 or higher have risen from 8.6 percent in 2005 to 11.2 percent in 2012.

In the same period, older Americans have also reduced their credit card debt, yet they have increased mortgage and auto debt. Those 40 years old and over have more overall debt today when compared to the amount in 2005, and their FICO scores have fallen as a result. Many parents are also accumulating more debt in order to financially help their children or are having to co-sign for their children who are not working.

New Jersey lawyers have the knowledge to help discharge burdensome credit card debt by filing for bankruptcy. They may also be able to help set up monthly payment plans that are realistic and achievable for those struggling financially.

Source: KPLR, “Young Americans are ditching credit cards“, June 15, 2013

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