Debt in America: Sign of a better economy or worse?

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CHICAGO, IL – America, it seems you’re finally taking charge of your credit card debt.

TransUnion, one of those credit companies always peepin’ what you pay for and how much you pay back, says there’s a big drop (to .57%) in credit card delinquents. That’s their nice name for someone who hasn’t made a payment in three months. Do the wrong guy like that, though, and you won’t just be ‘delinquent’, you’ll be deceased!!

Right now, plastic is the preferred form of payment in America, and the average credit card user is carrying $4,965 in debt– down six bucks from last year.

So is this finally definitive proof the economy’s turning around? One University of Houston professor says, ‘don’t bank on it.’

“You can either be optimistic that the economy’s better, so people can more readily pay their debts,” says Dr. Steven Craig, professor of economics, “or that the economy’s gonna get worse and people are really nervous, so they wanna make sure they don’t get behind.”

Or it could just be credit card companies finally getting more choosey because they know not doing so puts their profits at risk. “Ultimately,’ says Dr. Craig, ‘if the consumer never pay the bills, the credit card gets stuck with it.”

Folks have always been big on getting what they paid for… maybe now they’re realizing they got to pay ‘back’ what they got!