Laptops ready? Take notes: Congress wants it to be harder for the under-21 set to accrue a mountain of credit card debt.
A new federal law affects credit card holders — and those who want cards — of all ages. But because several provisions don't take effect until February, this could be the last semester of truly easy credit for many college students.
``I don't want to say credit cards are evil,'' said Cathy Pareto, a certified financial planner in Coral Gables. ``But targeting that demographic has long been an abusive practice. [Credit card companies] take advantage of the naïvete of teenagers.''
A recent survey by student loan manager Sallie Mae said that the average amount of debt carried by undergraduate cardholders is $3,173 — up 46 percent from five years ago. And the average number of credit cards these students have is about five.
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Peter Pham, CEO of BillShrink.com, summarized the parts of the law that affect young people like this.
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