CREDIT: Don't Get Alarmed

How much scare buying had the war set off? Last week the Federal Reserve Board provided the first rough measure. In July, it reported, installment purchases of automobiles, refrigerator's and other durable goods had sent consumer credit soaring $660 million, well above the $457 million rise in May and $550 million in June, to a total of $20.3 billion.

It was the first time in history that consumer debt had crossed the $20 billion mark, more than double the figure of a decade ago ($9.1 billion). But the rise was not as fearsome as it looked. While the nation's per...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!