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High interest rates contribute to growing credit card debt

Credit card interest rates have been going up over recent years, which has contributed to the growing balances carried by most Americans. Higher interest rates make it much more difficult to pay off existing credit card debt, and many people in Florida may see their balances rise despite making regular payments. This is extremely problematic for consumers who are struggling to pull themselves out of debt. 

Nationwide, consumers owe more than $1 trillion on their credit cards. Of that amount, over $100 billion is in interest. From March 2017 to March 2018, consumers shelled out $104 billion for credit card interest alone, which is 11 percent higher than the $93.7 billion they paid just a year prior. In 2013, consumers only paid $74.6 billion in interest. 

Interest rates on credit cards average at about 17 percent, with some cards running even higher. Retail store credit cards tend to have significantly higher interest rates than those issued through banks, and individual consumers' credit scores may also affect rates. Unfortunately, this means that those who are already struggling will likely have higher interest rates. 

No one in Florida really expects to find themselves buried in credit card debt, but high interest rates can plunge people farther into debt than they ever imagined. Although the majority of consumers likely wish they had the means to pay off their debt and move on with their lives, this is simply not the reality in which most people live. When debt becomes unmanageable, filing for bankruptcy can provide necessary debt relief to those striving for improved financial security. 

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