Inflation is bad enough for folks living on a budget with some money to spare, but it’s devastating for those relying on credit cards. We’ll talk about that and the best solution to the problem today with Neile Simon today on MoneyWise. Neile Simon is a Certified Credit Counselor with Christian Credit Counselors, an underwriter of this program. GROWING DEBT On today’s program, Simon shares troubling data from the Federal Reserve. The Fed just issued a report about credit card debt in the 2nd quarter of this year, and it’s surging as people struggle with inflation. Americans took on $46 billion in new credit card debt from April through June, almost a 6% increase from the previous quarter. There was also a 13% jump in new credit card accounts, the biggest increase in over 20 years. Why is this happening? The Fed report lays the blame on inflation, which is now running around 9%, and people being unwilling or unable to adjust their budget for higher prices. Some 233 million new accounts were opened in the second quarter. We haven’t seen a number that high since 2008. One seemingly positive in the report is that it says delinquency rates for credit card debt are still relatively low. However, that really just means the burden of servicing that debt hasn’t caught up to people yet. But it will. Total credit card debt jumped $100 billion in the 2nd quarter to reach a whopping $890 billion. And it’s not over. Lending Tree just did a survey in which 43% of respondents said they will likely add to their debt in the next six months. THE WAY OUT There’s a way out of credit card debt that doesn’t involve bankruptcy that destroys your credit rating or debt consolidation loans that can get you deeper in debt. That’s where Christian Credit Counselors comes in. CCC’s process is debt management, not debt consolidation or debt settlement. When people get on a debt management plan with CCC, they make only one monthly payment. Christian Credit Counselors has arrangements with all major credit card issuers to lower interest rates dramatically, which can help clients to pay off credit card debt up to 80% faster than doing it themselves. Developing a spending plan (a budget) is an important part of the process. And CCC’s team helps clients to set up a spending plan that works and puts them on a path to break free from debt. To learn more, visit ChristianCreditCounselors.orgor call 800-557-1985. On today’s program, Rob also answers listener questions: ● What is a payable on death provision for bank accounts? ● Does it make sense to take out a life insurance policy at age 75?