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Credit card debt escalates among elderly helping family: Linda Rhodes |

A major factor forcing older people to reach for the plastic is loss of employment: one-fourth reported losing their jobs. Just about one in five are dipping into their retirement savings to pay on their credit cards. And that’s very troublesome when you consider that 30 percent of workers ages 55 and older have more in credit card debt than retirement savings (Sloan Center on Aging & Work, Boston College).

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