Americans Ramp Up Credit Card Debt to Cover a Rising Cost of Living
In spite of the government’s ongoing narrative of a US economic recovery, major news outlets continue to remind us that life isn’t getting easier for most Americans. The Wall Street Journal recently published a lengthy expose on the rising cost of basic necessities. This chart shows how much more middle-class American households are spending thanks to 12.4% inflation since 2007.
Health-care spending by middle-income Americans rose 24% between 2007 and 2013, driven by an even larger rise in the cost of buying health insurance, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of detailed consumer-spending data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
That hit has been accompanied by increases in spending on other necessities, including food eaten at home, rent and education, as well as the soaring cost of staying connected digitally via cellphones and home Internet service.”
So how do Americans cope with this higher cost of living? Debt. According to the latest data, US consumers will have increased their credit card balances by about $60 billion in 2014.
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