The Federal Reserve reports that consumer credit grew in May for the
eighth month in a row, primarily as a result of credit card use.
According to the data, credit rose by $5.08 billion after a revised
$5.67 billion gain in April. Economists say that many consumers are
using their credit cards to purchase necessities such as gas, groceries,
and other day-to-day needs. Revolving debt, which includes credit
cards, rose by $3.37 in May after shrinking $877 million in April,
marking the first gain this year and the biggest jump since June 2008.
Non-revolving debt also was higher, climbing $1.71 billion in May after
jumping $6.54 billion the previous month. To keep credit card debt
under control, the Center for Responsible Lending recommends that
consumers always pay more than the minimum amount due on the monthly
bill. CRL says that doing so can save a consumer as much as $2 for
every extra $1 they pay.