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Consumers Less Confident in Their Ability to Pay off December Credit Card Balances

Consumers Less Confident in Their Ability to Pay off December Credit Card Balances

Americans’ confidence in their ability to pay their monthly credit card statement balances in full dipped slightly in December, according to CompareCards’ monthly Credit Card Confidence Index.

The Credit Card Confidence Index is a monthly survey intended to gauge Americans’ confidence in their ability to pay their cards’ bills in full now and in the future, as well as to track how often cardholders’ have paid their bills in full.

Each month, CompareCards asks American credit cardholders to rate their confidence in the ability to pay their credit cards’ monthly statement balance in full this month and six months from now and how often they’ve paid those balances in full in the past six months.

This monthly report – which debuted in September 2018 – shows that Americans are clearly confident in their ability to pay their credit card bills, but it also leaves open the possibility that their confidence might have peaked as 2019 approaches.

December Credit Card Confidence Index Key Findings:

  • Cardholders’ confidence in paying their monthly credit card statement balances in full this month fell slightly.
  • Sixty-one percent of cardholders said their confidence level was a 4 or a 5, down from 64 percent last month, but still up from September and October.
  • Twenty-six percent of cardholders rated their confidence level a 1 or 2. That’s up from 25 percent last month, but down from September and October.
  • Cardholders’ confidence in being able to pay the month’s credit card statement balances in full six months from now dipped slightly.
  • Sixty-seven percent of cardholders said their confidence level was a 4 or a 5. That’s down from 71 percent last month.
  • Eighteen percent of cardholders rated their confidence level a 1 or 2, up from 16 percent last month.
  • Thirty-seven percent of respondents said they paid their monthly card statement balance in full each of the past six months – the highest number since the Index began. However, 20 percent of respondents said they never paid their statement balances in full a single time during that period.
  • When it comes to handling credit cards, the confidence gap between men and women is shrinking, with 51 percent of men and 42 percent of women saying they’re very confident in their ability to pay this month’s statement balances in full.

“Given holiday spending and the recent Wall Street roller coaster ride, it’s not surprising to see a bit of a drop in Americans’ confidence in their ability to pay their monthly statement balances,” said Matt Schulz, Chief Industry Analyst at CompareCards.

Makes sense. If you have outstanding high-interest balances after the holidays, go see your credit union. You may be able to consolidate that debt into a single, low interest loan.

Posted in: Blog, CU Scene

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