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What Is the Average Credit Card Debt in America in 2023?

The average amount of credit card debt per person varies depending on age, race, income and location. MoneyGeek analyzed key credit card debt statistics to explore the state of debt in the U.S. and understand the factors associated with credit card debt.

  • There were 578.35 million credit card accounts in the U.S. in Q2 2023, up 5.2% — or 28.5 million — since Q2 2022.
  • Credit card debt totaled $1.031 trillion in Q2 2023, up from $887 billion in Q2 2022 — a 20-year high.
  • The average cardholder had $6,568 in credit card debt in Q2 2023, up from $5,963 in Q2 2022.
  • Individuals 75 or older had the most debt ($8,100), and those under 35 had the least ($3,700).
  • Alaska had the highest average credit card debt at $7,338; Wisconsin had the lowest average at $4,808.
  • Americans in the 60th to 79.9th annual income percentile were most likely to carry debt; approximately 57% of individuals in this income bracket had credit card debt.
  • White Americans had the highest average debt per person of any racial group ($6,900), while those who identified as Black or African American had the lowest ($3,900).

Source: Federal Reserve Bank of New York, Survey of Consumer Finance

Credit Card Debt Trends

According to data from the New York Federal Reserve, the average credit card balance in the US displayed notable fluctuations from 2003 to 2023. The balance steadily rose from $688 billion in Q1 2003 to a peak of $866 billion in Q4 2008, before descending to a low of $659 trillion in Q1 2014. The 2008 financial crisis likely contributed to a subsequent reduction. From 2015, an upward trajectory resumed, with a slight dip in 2020 possibly linked to the COVID-19 pandemic's economic impact.

However, by Q2 2023, the balance reached a two-decade high of $1.031 trillion, highlighting an increased reliance on credit cards over the 20-year span due to high inflation and other macroeconomic factors that followed the pandemic.

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Average Credit Card Debt by Age

Credit card debt tends to vary by age. MoneyGeek’s analysis of data from the Federal Reserve’s 2019 Survey of Consumer Finances found that, on average, older adults have more credit card debt than younger adults.

Data showed that people 35 or younger have the lowest average credit card debt at $3,700. Around 48% of individuals in this age group carry debt.

Adults 75 or older have the highest average credit card debt at $8,100, but just 28% of people in this age group have debt.

Meanwhile, 52% of Americans 45–54 years old have credit card debt, making them the age group most likely to carry it. The average credit card debt for this age group is $7,700.

Average Credit Card Debt by Age
Age Group
Median Credit Card Debt
Average Credit Card Debt
Percentage Who Carry Debt

Younger than 35




















75 or older




Average Credit Card Debt by State and Region

Credit card debt in the U.S. varies significantly by region and state, influenced by economic factors and spending behaviors. Our analysis highlights these disparities, focusing on regional trends and pinpointing the highest and lowest debt states.

Regional Analysis

  • Northeast: States such as Connecticut ($6,825), New Jersey ($6,819), and New York ($6,269) hold some of the highest debts. This region has an average of around $6,000, influenced by high costs of living and significant metropolitan areas.

  • Midwest: States like Wisconsin ($4,808) and Iowa ($4,811) exhibit some of the lowest debts in the nation. The Midwest averages around $5,200, reflecting a generally lower cost of living.

  • South: Texas ($6,542) and Virginia ($6,477) top the list in the South, with states like West Virginia ($5,005) at the lower end. The South's average hovers around $5,600, indicating varied economic conditions.

  • West: Alaska takes the lead with $7,338, significantly higher than many other states. The West has a diverse debt range but averages approximately $5,800, affected by states like California ($6,030) and Nevada ($6,176).

Top and Bottom States

  • Highest Average Debt: Alaska stands out with the highest average credit card debt of $7,338. Following closely are Connecticut ($6,825) and New Jersey ($6,819).

  • Lowest Average Debt: Wisconsin holds the lowest average at $4,808, closely followed by Iowa ($4,811) and West Virginia ($5,005). These states benefit from a lower cost of living and potentially more conservative spending habits.

Average Credit Card Debt by State
Average Credit Card Debt

























































New Hampshire


New Jersey


New Mexico


New York


North Carolina


North Dakota










Rhode Island


South Carolina


South Dakota














Washington, D.C.


West Virginia






Credit Card Debt by Income

By analyzing data from the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, MoneyGeek found that credit card debts and balances vary by household income.

Generally, households with higher incomes tend to have higher credit card debts. For instance, households in the highest income percentile — 90th to 100th — have an average of $12,600 of credit card debt. That's more than three times more than the income bracket with the lowest average debt. Those with the lowest annual income percentile — less than the 20th — had the lowest average credit card debt ($3,800).

Americans in the 60th to 79.9th annual income percentile were most likely to carry debt; approximately 57% of individuals in this income bracket had credit card debt.

Average Credit Card Debt by Income
Income Percentile
Median Credit Card Debt
Average Credit Card Debt
Percentage Who Carry Debt

Less than 20
























Credit Card Debt by Race & Ethnicity

U.S. residents identifying themselves as white (non-Hispanics) reported an average of $6,900 credit debt, according to the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances. This group had the highest average credit card balance of any surveyed.

Black and African-American non-Hispanic cardholders recorded the lowest amount of credit card debt at an average of $3,900 per cardholder.

Hispanic and Latino cardholders had an average of $5,500 credit card debt per person during the same period.

Those who identified with a race outside those mentioned above or as multiple races averaged $6,300 of credit card debt.

Hispanics and Latino cardholders had the highest percentage of individuals with debt at 50%. Those who identified as other or multiple races had the lowest rate of individuals who carried debt at 44%.

Average Credit Card Debt by Race & Ethnicity
Median Credit Card Debt
Average Credit Card Debt
Percentage Who Carry Debt

White (Non-Hispanic)




Black or African-American (Non-Hispanic)




Hispanic or Latino




Other or Multiple Races




Expert Insights

Dealing credit card can be difficult, but it doesn't have to be impossible. Our panel of experts weighed in on some of the best ways to pay down credit card debt and related topics.

  1. What's the most important thing for credit card holders to know about credit card debt?
  2. What are the best options to pay off credit card debt?
  3. How much credit card debt is too much?
  4. What happens when you're considered delinquent on a credit card payment?
Radhika Duggal
Radhika Duggal

CMO, and Professor at NYU Stern School of Business

Dr. Kortney Ziegler, Ph.D.
Dr. Kortney Ziegler, Ph.D.

Founder and CEO at

Kyle Dodrill, CFP®
Kyle Dodrill, CFP®

Investment Advisor at at Deschutes Investment Consulting LLC

Todd Christensen
Todd Christensen

Accredited Financial Counselor and Education Manager at Money Fit by Debt Reduction Services, Inc.

Freddie Huynh
Freddie Huynh

Vice President of Data Optimization at Freedom Financial Network

Jordan Grzesczyk, CFP®
Jordan Grzesczyk, CFP®

Certified Financial PlannerTM Transverse Wealth Solutions

Irene Skricki
Irene Skricki

Policy Analyst in the Office of Community Affairs of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau's Consumer Education and Engagement Division

Sean Fox
Sean Fox

President of Freedom Debt Relief

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About Doug Milnes, CFA

Doug Milnes, CFA headshot

Doug Milnes is the head of marketing and communications at MoneyGeek. He has spent more than a decade in corporate finance performing valuations for Duff and Phelps and financial planning and analysis for various companies including OpenTable. He holds a master’s degree in Predictive Analytics (Data Science) from Northwestern University and is a CFA charter holder. Doug geeks out on building financial and predictive models and using data to make informed decisions.

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