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    Repiglican Roast

    A spirited discussion of public policy and current issues

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    I'm furious about my squandered nation.

    Wednesday, October 01, 2008

    Mortgages Now, Credit Cards Later

    A hurricane of bad credit card debt will start crashing ashore in the United States in the first quarter of next year, even as the mortgage crisis continues, analysts at New York research firm Innovest Strategic Value Advisors warned Monday.

    “A combination of a 10-year steady drip of deteriorating personal finances and a tidal wave . . . brought on by the mortgage and credit crisis leads us to believe that credit cards are going to implode in the near term,” Gregory Larkin, Innovest's senior banking analysts said during an online seminar on the topic.

    So far, credit-card “charge-offs” – debts declared irrecoverable by card issuers – have been “defying gravity,” with losses lower than in both 2001 and 2005, Mr. Larkin said.

    But, historically, after a time lag, irrecoverable credit-card debt has followed mortgage charge-offs up or down, and U.S. mortgage charge-offs have rocketed up eight-fold since the last quarter of 2007.

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