FORT LAUDERDALE, FL -- (Marketwire) -- 11/08/12 -- Traditionally a high percentage of Latinos rely on cash for purchases, but now the number of Latino credit cardholders is on the rise. According to Experian Simmons National Consumer Study (NCS) data, between 2004 and 2011 the total number of Latinos who have a credit card increased by 23 percent and it's expected to keep growing considerably in the next four years.
Rising credit card ownership is associated with economic prosperity, but it can also lead to overspending and debt.
"As more and more Latinos have access to credit cards, they are more likely to fall into the credit card debt trap," said Howard Dvorkin, CPA and founder of ConsolidatedCredit.org.
Dvorkin warns the Latin community about the most frequent signs of a credit card problem:
Spending more than the amount earned: This is a common problem many Latin families face. Spending more than the salary earned and charging the rest on a credit card will quickly lead to credit card debt.
Using more than 15 percent of income to pay credit card debt: Consumers shouldn't spend more than 10-15 percent of their monthly income on credit card bills. If they spend more than the 15%, they need to seek financial help to get their finances back on track.
Making only minimum payments: Making the minimum payments may keep consumers afloat for a while, but it's not helping them pay down their debt. When only the minimum amount due is paid, most of the money go towards paying the interest and not the actual debt itself. Paying off the entire bill each month, paying double the minimum due, or paying the amount of interest charged plus the minimum amount due will start to reduce the debt.
Maxing out credit cards: If consumers have hit their credit limit on their lines of credit, they don't need another credit card. Maxed-out credit cards are a sure sign of credit card debt problems.
For information in Spanish visit http://espanol.consolidatedcredit.org, http://www.facebook.com/ConsolidarCredito, or 1-800-901-8323.
About Consolidated Credit:
Consolidated Credit, founded in 1993, is one of the nation's largest credit counseling organizations in the country and has helped over 5 million people with financial issues. Their mission is to assist families throughout the US in ending financial crisis and solving money management problems through education and professional counseling.
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