NEW YORK (sbup) – Financial behavior in an era of changing technology and uneven economic fortunes covers a wide spectrum in the United States. Smartphone payments are dominated by high-income earners, while in-person bill payments are mostly used by lower-income Americans. Plus, the higher your education level the more likely you are to pay your bills online.
Those are just a few takeaways on the bill-payment habits of Americans from a recent report by New York City-based market intelligence research firm Packaged Facts, which released a report showing that certain demographic factors impact how Americans pay all of those bills.
For example, the report notes that in high-income U.S. households, debt payments are significantly more likely to be paid via online bill payment. Those households are also slightly more likely to use Visa (Stock Quote: V) than MasterCard (Stock Quote: MA) for their credit accounts. Here are some other takeaways from the Packaged Facts report:
The data comes during a time when Americans are once again piling up the consumer debt after a few years of forced austerity. According to the Federal Reserve, total U.S. consumer debt rose 7.5% in the fourth quarter of 2011, which took total consumer debt up to $2.5 trillion – a $19 billion rise in the fourth quarter alone, the Fed reports. Here are some other details of the Fed report:
Thus, the story at the start of 2012 is one of Americans accumulating more debt, but using different payment channels to pay off their bills. No matter what your income or education level, the most important strategy to pay down your debt is simply the strategy that works for you.
Take a look at MainStreet's guide to How to Be Your Own Debt Relief Counselor for how to do your part to take care of your own debt!
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