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Florida residents who are juggling bills maybe interested in learning what the top three sources are for the debts accrued by American families. According to statistics provided by the Federal Reserve, in 2014 the top three debt sources were:

— Home mortgages

— Student loans

— Credit cards

There are two schools of thought regarding the role of credit card debt in the country’s economic recovery. One theory is that stable or climbing credit card debt indicates that consumer spending is increasing, which can potentially expand the job market and drive up wages. This cycle of more employed workers earning higher wages means more consumer spending and is an indicator of a robust economy.

However, some economists share the more pessimistic view that more consumers are borrowing in order to meet their living expenses. When consumers resort to living off of their credit cards, it can instead signal the last gasp before all options run out for American families teetering on the brink of foreclosure and bankruptcy.

In the two-year period between 2006 and 2008, consumer credit card debt continued to climb to its zenith in January of 2009. After that, the trend reversed, dipping downward before eventually plateauing at about $15,600 on average per household. Reasons for the earlier soaring credit card debt rates include the easily accessible credit issued to consumers by lending institutions, as well as lower interest rates.

When indebtedness began its decline in the winter of 2009, it wasn’t because consumers were suddenly able to pay off their debts. Instead, many companies wiped the slate clean by writing off delinquent debts, which in turn lowered the revolving credit card debt rates.

But whether this trend is good for the nation is a moot point when you are struggling to keep your own household from sinking into the morass of indebtedness. Although many consumers struggle with the decision, filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy can be financially liberating and provide a family with welcome relief from the stresses of harassment by creditors.

Source: NerdWallet, “American Household Credit Card Debt Statistics: 2014” Tim Chen, accessed Feb. 20, 2015