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Study paints grim picture of credit card debt in U.S.

For most of us, the sight of a large number in the "Current Amount Due" section of our credit card bill is very bad news. And if you have ever tried just paying the minimum month after month, you will likely only got deeper in debt, even if you don't add any new expenses to the card.

But while a large credit card bill is a problem for an individual or family, what does it mean when the country as a whole is awash in debt? Well, such a case is also a cause for concern. You see, credit card debt statistics are used as an indicator of the collective financial health of households in the United States. The larger the total debt, the dimmer the economic forecast.

Unfortunately, we are currently seeing very high levels of debt being registered quarter after quarter, including a record-breaking 2016 third-quarter. In fact, it has been estimated that by the end of this year we will see an $80 billion net increase in our credit card debt, which will put us very close to 2008's all-time high.

Insofar as individuals and families are concerned, the average household is carrying $8,380 debt on their credit card accounts. But since this is an average, it means that while some households may have their debt under control, there are others who are truly struggling to meet their financial obligations.

If you have exhausted your resources trying to pay your credit card and other debts and are just getting deeper in debt, you may need to consider your options for debt relief. A knowledgeable bankruptcy attorney could have a look at your financial records and help you decide on an appropriate course of action, which may include filing for Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

Source: WalletHub, "2016 Credit Card Debt Study: Trends & Insights," Alina Codreanu, Dec. 8, 2016

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