Consumer Payment Card News

Minority Report

A new study reveals that African-American and Hispanic households are more likely to be in credit card debt than their white counterparts. The report shows that the percent of cardholders carrying a balance stood at 84% for African-Americans, 75% for Hispanics, and 50% for whites. According to New York-based Demos, between 1998 and 2001, Latino households saw a 19% growth in credit card balances, African Americans stood at 10% and white households saw an 11% decrease. Demos says that Hispanic and African-American families held lower credit card balances than that of white families throughout the 1990s but the growth of their credit card balances far outpaced that of white families in the latter half of the decade. Demos concludes that any meaningful attempt to explain the widening debt gap between Latino and African-American families and their white counterparts must take into account the larger social, cultural and economic forces driving credit card debt.

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