Consumers have been very conscientious in making sure to reduce their outstanding credit card debt over the last few years and now stand in far better financial positions since the end of the recession.
Balances on consumer credit cards issued by financial institutions stood at $531 billion in April, according to the latest National Consumer Credit Trends Report from the credit monitoring bureau Equifax. That's down roughly 28 percent from the all-time high of more than $730 billon observed in January 2009.
Meanwhile, the amount owed on retail credit cards has largely remained the same, at least on a seasonally-adjusted basis, has remained more or less the same, but has done so despite there being more than 173 million such accounts nationwide, up 4.7 percent from December 2010, the report said. And as of April, the available credit limits on these accounts has jumped by roughly $5 billion in total after hitting an all-time low at the end of last year.
Consumers are getting their finances on track in a variety of ways over the last few years, leading to fewer seeking out debt relief services.