Debt increasing in the U.S. despite inflation, numbers show

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Americans continue to spend and rack up debt, despite inflation.

As the holidays approach, deals and discounts abound but many will overspend on those seasonal sales.

The latest numbers show U.S. credit card debt is soaring as people continue to spend despite high interest rates.

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades on everything from car loans to home mortgages.

According to data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, households added $351 billion in overall debt last year, the most since the first quarter of 2008.

Most of that is mortgage debt.

The average interest rate for car buyers climbed more than 19%, the highest since the mid-1980s.

The data shows credit card balances increased more for people ages 30-59.

People in lower-income areas also owe more now than they did pre-pandemic.

Borrowers ages 60-79 and people in higher-income areas typically have balances below pre-pandemic levels.

FOX13 spoke with several shoppers and financial experts about debt going into the holiday season.

Tune in to Good Morning Memphis for their take on battling debt amid increasing inflation.