Our friends over at Recession Wire posted a story about the decline of credit card usage. Their post highlights a recent survey in which a significant number of Americans claim to be swearing off credit cards for good.

They wrote:

Almost a quarter of people said they had permanently changed their attitude towards credit cards and would not be using them anymore, in a recent survey commissioned by eBillMe. (Caveat: the company provides a payment alternative to credit cards…)

We’re getting smarter about money in other ways–or at least we say we are. 38 percent of people said they would manage their finances more carefully over the next six months, and 40 percent said they would save more.

With the holiday shopping season upon us, does this newfound pledge suggest shoppers plan to lay off the plastic and spend a little less?

A holiday spending survey from the International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs reveals that 16 percent of holiday shoppers plan to start shopping on Black Friday, no doubt in a hunt for sales. The survey reveals that shoppers overall plan to spend an average of about $543 on gifts, $133 on gift cards.


I can see cautious shoppers resisting the urge to lay off their cards in the coming months, but in when things ultimately turn around will old habits return?

For decades now we’ve been conditioned to rely on credit. Have we finally learned our lesson? If so, are we passing that knowledge off to young people and those new to the country? Both have become targets of credit card companies so who’s to say one generation might not take the place of another in the eyes of credit lenders?

I’d love to hear from you. Leave your credit card confessionals below and send your own recession stories to therecessiondiaries@gmail.com


Michael Arceneaux hails from Houston, lives in Harlem and praises Beyoncé’s name wherever he goes. Follow him on Twitter.