Leveraging Psychological Insights to Encourage the Responsible Use of Consumer Debt

U.S. consumers currently hold $880 billion in revolving debt, with a mean household credit card balance of approximately $6,000. Although economic factors play a role in this societal issue, it is clear that psychological forces also affect consumers’ decisions to take on and maintain unmanageable debt balances. We examine three psychological barriers to the responsible use of credit and debt.

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