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Two Ways: Unkindest Cut for Credit Cards


Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

Consumer borrowing fell last month; fewer Americans used their credit cards to make purchases.

The New York Times reports consumer credit decreased at an annual rate of $7.48 billion in February, or 3.5%. This is far below Wall Street expectations of a $1 billion decline.

The report by the Federal Reserve showed that the decline was led by a drop in credit and charge cards. These figures fell at an annual rate of $7.8 billion, or 9.7%. It's the steepest percentage drop since 1978, and the largest in terms of dollars since record-keeping began in 1968.

For more on the economy, see Professor Kevin Depew's Five Things: The Commodification of Violence.

From the Bull Pen: Bulls can look to Visa (V) for a play; it broke out of a range yesterday. One can fade (read: buy) the stock into $55. For those with a riskier profile, keep an eye on Discover (DFS) with the 20-day moving average approaching the 50-day moving average.

From the Bear Cave: Bears can look to Sears Holding (SHLD). It wouldn't be surprising to see the stock near $40 in the near term. But take note of monthly same-store sales figures, which will be out on Thursday morning.

Have a great night!

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