Experts say teens are spending more than ever before because they have more to spend. About 10 percent of teens have credit cards, nearly twice that number have debit cards and about 20 percent get money simply by asking their parents for it. In fact, parents themselves are setting poor examples. Credit card loan delinquencies are at record levels, while Americans' saving rate is at an all-time low. Critics say the credit card industry is too aggressive in marketing to younger and younger kids.
Credit Cards with Training Wheels for Teenagers
Prepaid Debit Cards for Teens - Smart Idea or Financial Fail?
Advertiser Disclosure: The credit card offers that appear on this site are from credit card companies from which MoneyCrashers. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the order in which they appear on category pages. Advertiser partners include American Express, Chase, U. Bank, and Barclaycard, among others. I remember when I received my first credit card offer. As a reformed spender, I can tell you now how bad it was for me to have a credit card before I understood the risks.
Talking About Teen Identity Theft
It is tempting to get a credit card for every store in the mall, especially when they offer those instant discounts. But college student Jeremy Pilachowski, of Bourbonnais, wasn't buying it. He read about how too many revolving lines of credit can really hurt your credit score and decided to stick with just two credit cards, one for his favorite clothing store and one that is accepted nearly everywhere. Pilachowski, a year-old Olivet Nazarene University senior marketing major, made it a point to keep the credit limits low to avoid overspending. He aims to keep the balance well below that.
Myth: Make sure your teenager gets a credit card so he or she will learn to be responsible with money. Truth: Getting a credit card for your teenager is an excellent way to teach him or her to be financially irresponsible. That's why teens are now the number-one target of credit card companies.