Las Vegans’ credit card debt rising faster than you might think

Southern Nevadans are swiping their credit cards more often and racking up debt faster than most consumers nationally, a new report shows.

Residents of the Las Vegas metro area had $3.88 billion in credit-card debt as of June 30, up 4.48 percent from a year earlier, according to Atlanta-based Equifax.

That was the fifth-fastest rate among the 25 metro areas listed in the report.

Nationally, consumers had $604 billion in credit-card debt as of June 30, up 2.94 percent year-to-year.

Houston-area residents took on credit-card debt at the fastest pace in the past year, up 5.45 percent. That was followed by Orlando, Fla., at 4.89 percent, Miami at 4.76 percent and Dallas at 4.7 percent, Equifax found.

Las Vegas consumers are shopping more as the economy improves, even though wages are largely stagnant and many families still struggle to recover from the recession.

Some 56 percent of Nevada households are in a “persistent state of financial insecurity” with little or no savings, according to the nonprofit Corporation for Enterprise Development.

A family of four would need about $5,900 in savings to carry them for three months in the event of a job loss, health crisis or other emergency, but more and more middle-class homes in Nevada “fall short of that amount,” the organization has said.