Americans are heading for economic catastrophe. The skyrocketing cost of healthcare has left millions in debt. And the public has cried foul.
According to a new poll, only 29% of Americans believe that paying off debts is essential to their survival as a nation. The number has increased to 72% if you factor in other taxes and other social and political costs and benefits.
Americans are deeply in debt. Millions have turned to their credit card statements for help. Millions more owe their debt than they would have been able to with a traditional loan. And millions more owe as much as 75% of what they owe.
Millions are now paying interest on a debt the size of their life.
More and more people are living beyond their means. Some are seriously ill. One man has spent $3 million accumulating a 100% owned home, which means he will struggle to pay back. Another $3 million is in foreclosure. And thousands more are in debt whose only options are bankruptcy and bankruptcy.
Many Americans don’t know how to raise their credit cards, or take care of their spending. They do, however, know how to deal with these dire circumstances.
Debtors deserve help. So do millions of Americans.
Debtors are not the only ones struggling. The country is in similar debt. The Consumer Federation of America is calling on the Federal Reserve to raise the interest rates and other key lending standards to help borrowers facing financial stress.
According to the Federation, 1-200 million people have fallen inside the eight to twelve-hour day. By raising the rate of interest and other important standards, there is no way to stop those people from making unnecessary and dangerous financial mistakes.
To do that, the Federation suggests requiring all credit card issuers to “charge-back” 50% of their balance for purchases made in 30 days. This will reduce balance transfers to 20% of the credit amount. And, eventually all credit card issuing banks will offer consumers the chance to forfeit all their credit cards.
How can this be good for the economy? The answer: it absolutely can. Before you get set to join this corporate club, you should know to look closely at the implications for the bottom line. The debtors’ clubs are mostly opposed by business and households.
The Consumer Federation of America says:
As the average American household borrows more now than it has in at least 1950,000, the debt of American families alone has grown to more than $18,000,000. Unfortunately, the consequences of irresponsible and unnecessary borrowing are becoming more severe, with very high proportions of the middle class living beyond their means.
The Federation, which tracks corporate finances, claims that this rising debt will further compound the worst crises in the American economy’consumer debt and housewife debt. Under the dire economic scenarios they propose, the credit card companies and banks will continue to lavish billions upon billions of dollars on the risk that consumers will default and cause long-lasting economic damage.
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Business, American Express, Money Management by William Dunbar is published by Arcco.