Posts Tagged ‘credit card debt’


Debt Settlement Law Firm vs Debt Settlement Company
Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

Unless you have been living under a rock, you should understand that the American marketplace has seriously gone down south. People have been losing work, their places of residence, and many their sanity. A single difficulty that has pretty much been haunting consumers since this has occurred is large amounts of consumer credit card debt. Debtors can be found trying to beat large monthly premiums that practically never seem to go down plus interest rates that are totally absurd. One plan that has been truly proving to be a success for most consumers is credit card debt settlement; however there are two forms of debt settlement programs. Currently, there are business models that can be setup using a lawyer and then programs that can be set up with a standard service. The former is what will be able to really present debtors a great possibility to become debt free in the least amount of time with the least amount of concerns.

With a credit card debt settlement program, the debtor must fall into delinquency on their minimum payments and save money on the side. This will allow them to in time work out a one time lump sum payment and close the deficit out. Oftentimes the consumer can salvage about half what they owe plus find themselves out of debt in just a couple years. That is very good; however there are a couple downsides with debt settlement that can make using a lawyer more beneficial to the consumer. For starters once you fall past due on the debts the lenders can try to gather the balance due through calls. A law firm has the ability to lawfully limit collection agencies from constantly harassing the client, at which a company cannot. One more downside to the debt settlement plan will be the potential for getting sued. With having retained a law firm, then they will lawfully interact with and still negotiate with a bank who will be making an effort to take somebody to the courtroom. This is a great selling point for people when using a debt settlement law firm over a company.

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Credit Card Debt and the US Economy
Thursday, July 8th, 2010

The United States under Obama is just turning the corner as far as recession is concerned. But one factor that had contributed to some extant to the recession and financial crisis is the credit card debt in the USA. In terms of figures the credit cards in circulation are over 1.5 billion for a population of just over 300 million. This is a menacing ratio and translates to a credit card debt of over 600 billion. To this figure if we add the almost million bankruptcies in the United Sates than we can get an idea of how much the United States economy is affected.

America is presently the world’s largest economy though in the near future China may well over take it. But unlike in China in the United States 60 million households do not pay their outstanding balances in full. This are carried forward and classified as unsecured debt. This debt because of the low rate of clearance say 2-4% of the outstanding has resulted in a big economic problem resulting in a huge liability to a lot of people.

The reason for this debt is not hard to seek and has its genesis in the easy availability of credit and secondly the ease by which gambling on the net with credit cards can be affected. At a conservative estimate nearly 3 million Americans could be addicted to gambling. Bear in mind that the cumulative United states national debt is hovering around 5. 7 trillion. This is far exceeded by the total consumer debt of $6.5 trillion and one can imagine what this means. It really spells a very difficult financial situation bordering on a catastrophe.

The situation is compounded with an abysmally low saving rate of the American populace which presently is almost zero. In case one compares this with the saving rate in the eighties when it was around 8.5% then the magnitude of the problem can be understood.

The period of the late 90s of the last century saw immense prosperity for the people. But this was also the period when debt grew because of easy availability of credit. Thus In the period 1989-2001 the debt almost tripled from $ 238 billion to $692 billion. The savings rate declined and bankruptcies rose up by 125%

This massive credit card debt has had a negative effect on the economy. In addition mounting mortgage and consumer debt is crippling the budget of most households. Large bankruptcies have set in like Lehman brothers and GM. The deregulation of Banking has also taken its toll as the real cost of corporate credit (prime rate) has increased only marginally (2.5%-3.0%) yet the real cost of consumer credit card debt has doubled from less than 6% to over 11%. Revolving of credit card debt to the next cycle amounts to nearly $11,000 per household.

To sum up, as things stand the vast US economy may in the years to come buckle downwards if the credit card debt is not reined in.


Credit Card Facts
Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

The average consumer carries around $20,000 worth of credit card debt and pays close $400 a month on that credit card debt. The average interest rate on credit cards in the United States is 15% APR. So if you take the time to figure out the statistics you will find that over the life of your credit card debt you will end up paying back the credit card company $70,003.50 for the $20,000 you borrowed. It would also take you 175 months or 14.58 years to completely payoff your credit card debt.

If you choose to enter into a Debt Settlement program with $20,000 on average your total amount of debt would be reduced to $11,600 including the debt settlement company’s fees. You would end up saving a total of $50,003.50 in interest and a total of $8,400 in your principal balance. Making your grand total savings of $58,403.50! If you continue paying $400 per month in a debt settlement program you will be completely debt free in 33.14 months. Under 3 years!!

Interest rates

Interest rates vary widely. Some credit card loans are secured by real estate, and can be as low as 6 to 12% in the U.S. (2005). Typical credit cards have interest rates between 7 and 36% in the U.S., depending largely upon the bank’s risk evaluation methods and the borrower’s credit history. Brazil has much higher interest rates, about 50% over that of most developing countries, which average about 200% (Economist, May 2006). A Brazilian bank-issued Visa or Mastercard to a new account holder can have annual interest as high as 240% even though inflation seems under control at around 6% per annum (Economist, May 2006). Banco do Brasil offered its new checking account holders Visa and Mastercard credit accounts for 192% annual interest, with somewhat lower interest rates reserved for people with dependable income and assets (July 2005).[citation needed] These high-interest accounts typically offer very low credit limits (USD$40 to $400). They also often offer a grace period with no interest until the due date, which makes them more popular for use as liquidity accounts, which means that the majority of consumers use them only for convenience to make purchases within the monthly budget, and then (usually) pay them off in full each month.

Calculation of interest rates

Most U.S. credit cards are quoted in terms of nominal APR compounded daily, or sometimes (and especially formerly) monthly, which in either case is not the same as the effective annual rate (EAR). Despite the “annual” in APR, it is not necessarily a direct reference for the interest rate paid on a stable balance over one year. The more direct reference for the one-year rate of interest is EAR. The general conversion factor for APR to EAR is EAR=((1+APR/n)^n)-1, where n represents the number of compounding periods of the APR per EAR period. For a common credit card quoted at 12.99% APR compounded daily, the one year EAR is ((1+.1299/365)^365) -1, or 13.87%; and if it is compounded monthly, the one year EAR is ((1+.1299/12)^12) – 1 or 13.79. On an annual basis, the one-year EAR for compounding monthly is always less than the EAR for compounding daily. However, the relationship of the two in individual billing periods depends on the APR and the number of days in the billing period. For example, given 12 billing periods a year, 365 days, and an APR of 12.99%, if a billing period is 28 days then the rate charged by monthly compounding is greater than that charged by daily compounding [ .1299/12 is greater than ((1+.1299/365)^28)-1]. But for a billing period of 31 days, the order is reversed (.1299/12 is less than ((1+.1299/365)^31)). In general, credit cards available to middle-class cardholders that range in credit limit from $1,000 to $30,000 calculate the finance charge by methods that are exactly equal to compound interest compounded daily, although the interest is not posted to the account until the end of the billing cycle. A high U.S. APR of 29.99% carries an effective annual rate of 34.96% for daily compounding and 34.48% for monthly compounding, given a year with 12 billing periods and 365 days.

*Interest rate information from Wikipedia