|By Marketwire .||
|September 13, 2012 08:20 AM EDT||
NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 09/13/12 -- In the face of a high unemployment rate and concerns of a major slowdown in the global economy consumers have continued to cut back on borrowing. A recent reported released by the Federal Reserve have shown credit card spending in the U.S. has declined for two consecutive months. The Paragon Report examines investing opportunities in the Credit Services Industry and provides equity research on Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) and Mastercard Inc. (NYSE: MA).
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The report showed that total consumer borrowing in July declined 3.3 billion to a seasonally adjusted $2.705 trillion. After reaching an all-time high of $1.03 trillion, four years ago, credit card debt has declined 17 percent to $850.7 billion in July. During the same time student loan debt has soared from $1.56 trillion in to $1.85 trillion. A poor job market is most likely to blame for the sharp decline in borrowing as employers added only 96,000 jobs in August, a decrease from the 141,000 in July. The average during the first quarter of the year was 226,000 jobs a month.
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A $7.25 billion settlement in which Visa Inc., MasterCard Inc. and major banks have agreed to pay retailers for alleged fee fixing is being contested by the National Retail Federation. The NRF has argued that the proposed settlement does nothing to prevent swipe fees from being increased in the future. The group on Tuesday stated it had received approval to go ahead and try to block the settlement in court.
"The settlement was by the credit card companies and for the credit card companies. This will not help merchants or customers," said Mallory Duncan, senior vice-president and general counsel for NRF.
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