Thursday, March 8, 2007

Lies, Damned Lies, and...

The NewsHour did a story on credit cards tonight, so I suppose it was more or less inevitable that this old warhorse would get trotted out:

"Today, the average American family has more than $9,000 in credit card debt."

If you divide total outstanding credit card debt by the number of households with at least one credit card that's what you get, but it's also true that only about 1 in 20 American households owes $8,000 or more on credit cards.

Having said that, household debt is at record levels. The situation is scary. But we don't need misleading statistics to learn that.

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