Study: 59% Pay Off Credit Card Balance Each Month

Saving moneyIn another indicator that Americans are increasingly inclined to reduce their credit card debt, a sampling of 150,000 consumers last month shows that 59 percent pay off their card balances in full each month, compared to 46 percent a year ago.
The study by BillShrink.com, which offers personal savings tools for consumers, reinforces what the Federal Reserve has been reporting for several months.
Revolving credit, or credit card balances, fell $8.5 billion, or 11.7 percent, to $866 billion in December, the 15th-consecutive monthly decline, the Fed reported last month.
The overall outstanding consumer credit – including auto loans, but not mortgage debt – fell $1.73 billion, or .8 percent, in December to a seasonally adjusted $2.456 trillion. In November, total consumer credit fell a record $21.8 billion.
“The recession of 2009 was a wake-up call for many Americans who were spending beyond their means,” said Peter Pham, CEO of BillShrink. “Now we’re seeing people spend wisely and monitor their expenses carefully so that they can begin building a rainy day fund.”
Credit card holders also have been motivated by the raising of interest rates and certain fees, and the re-introduction of annual fees by major credit card issuers that took place during the months leading up to Feb. 22, when credit card reform laws took full effect.
The Credit CARD Act, signed by President Obama in May 2009, provides first-ever restrictions on retroactive rate increases; allows card users to “opt-in” to over-the-limit fees, and requires more advance notices and greater transparency by card issuers.
eCreditDaily makes it possible to quickly compare the best rates and rewards among the major credit card issuers.

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