Credit: International Card Game

Total consumer credit in the U.S., reported the Federal Reserve Board last week, reached a record $100.3 billion at the end of May—an average debt of almost $500 for every man, woman and child. At least part of the push to the new record can be attributed to the fact that more and more commercial banks, the leading sources of consumer credit, are augmenting their traditional personal-loan and automobile-financing activities by issuing all-purpose credit cards. Such cards, says an official of Boston's State Street Bank and Trust Co., are "what the public...

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