Poor economic conditions are driving up consumers' credit card balances and delinquency rates, according to data released Wednesday by TransUnion LLC.
The Chicago credit bureau found that the average credit card holder's debt in the third quarter was $5,710, up 6% from the year earlier. About 1.09% of cardholders were delinquent on one or more accounts in the quarter, up from 1.03% a year before.
Ezra Becker, the principal consultant in TransUnion's financial services group, said in a press release: "The third quarter of 2008 saw a drop in the nation's disposable income per capita and an increase in unemployment, putting additional burden on the consumer's ability to repay credit card debt."
The highest average card debt was in Alaska, $7,827, followed by Nevada, with $6,636.
The lowest average debt was in Iowa, with 4,277, and North Dakota, $4,403.
The biggest increases were in Wyoming, where average debt jumped 4.96% from the previous quarter, and Delaware, up 4.12%.
The largest declines in card debt were in Maine, where the average balance fell 1.4% from the second quarter, and North Dakota, down 1.12%.