In the fourth quarter each year, ramped-up holiday season spending typically keeps numerous borrowers from making timely payments on their credit cards. This past year's October-through-November period was no exception. According to TransUnion, the rate of credit card payments at least 90 days overdue climbed from 0.78 percent the fourth quarter of 2011 to 0.85 percent -- an increase of about 9 percent. In addition, the rate rose 13 percent from the third quarter when it was 0.75 percent. Ezra Becker, vice president of research and consulting in TransUnion's financial services business unit, confirms that much of the growth in late payments on credit cards in the October-December period is due to increased spending for the holiday season.