Sep 10, 2023

Question of the Day: What percent of adults have carried credit card debt in the past year?

The burden of credit card debt is heavy. How many adults carried this extra weight last year?

Answer: 40% carried a balance (among adults)


  • What does it mean to “carry” credit card debt?
  • Even though high interest rates on credit card debt make carrying a balance expensive, how or why might consumers get into a situation where they cannot pay their credit card bill in full every month?
  • Credit card companies often list a minimum payment due on their monthly statement. Do you think it is a good idea to make only that minimum payment? Why or why not?
  • What are some strategies to help you avoid becoming one of the 40%?

Click here for the ready-to-go slides for this Question of the Day that you can use in your classroom.


Behind the numbers (Federal Reserve Board):

"The share of adults with outstanding debt who were carrying less debt than 12 months ago was comparable with, though slightly higher than, the share carrying more debt. This pattern is similar to that in recent years, with the exception of 2020, when the share who had reduced their credit card debt exceeded the share who had increased it by 8 percentage points."



Here is a great video about credit card debt from our Video Library: Credit Card Debt Explained | KQED News


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About the Author

Mason Butts

After graduating from UCLA with a Master's in Education, Mason spent 5 years as a science educator in a South Los Angeles public high school. He is committed to supporting the holistic growth of all students and empowering them to live a life of relational, academic, and financial success. Now settled in the Bay Area, Mason enjoys facilitating professional developments and partnering with educators as they prepare students for a bright financial future. When Mason is not building curriculum or planning a training, he can be found cycling, trying new foods, and exploring the outdoors.

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