Kristin McGrath

Kristin McGrath

Before getting a crash-course in personal finance at, Kristen covered arts and entertainment. She got her start at a small monthly magazine in St. Louis and then spent a year covering music and movies (and "American Idol") for USA Today's Life section while getting her journalism degree at American University in Washington, D.C. McGrath is now editor of community-discussion site CreditCardForum.

Kristin McGrath's stories on

Infographic: Consumers expect credit to stay tight -- A few hopeful consumers predict credit accessibility will get easier -- but most think it will get tougher or stay the same ... (See Credit accessibility)

Infographic: Credit card delinquencies inch up after three-year slide -- While consumers are paying many of their loans on time, late credit card payments saw an uptick in the third quarter of 2013, according to the American Bankers Association ... (See Delinquencies)

Infographic: Baby boomers have the most credit pride -- Baby boomers have more credit confidence than younger generations, according to a survey ... (See Credit pride)

Infographic: What were 2013's biggest budget busters? -- For about one in five Americans, meals at restaurants were the biggest threat to their budgets in 2013, according to a survey ... (See Budget busters)

Infographic: Identity theft takes an expensive, emotional toll -- Imagine the populations of Illinois and Oklahoma all falling victim to identity theft, and you'll have an idea of this crime's annual scope ... (See Identity theft)

Infographic: 56 percent of parents willing to rack up holiday debt for kids -- Is that first post-holiday credit card statement worth it to see your kids' eyes light up at the spread under the tree? More than half of parents with kids under 18 say it is ... (See Holiday debt)

Infographic: 10 percent think debt dies with them -- Many consumers aren't aware their unpaid debts could haunt their survivors, according to a survey from Securian Financial Group ... (See Debt after death)

Infographic: Millennials have unhealthy credit habits -- Millennials could stand to learn a few credit-management habits from older generations, according to research from Experian ... (See Millennial credit habits)

Infographic: Lack of savings more worrisome than card debt -- Although credit card debt is more stressful than either health care or living costs, what's most likely to keep you up at night is a lack of savings for the future ... (See Money worries: No savings outstresses debt)

Infographic: Young people more likely to freely swap plastic -- While older people are more likely to hold tight to their credit and debit cards, younger generations are more liberal about sharing them with others, a survey says ... (See Borrowing credit cards)

Infographic: Preferred payment methods vary by location -- Buying groceries? You'll pay by debit card. Online? It's credit cards or PayPal. Grabbing a burger? You'll fork over cash, says a study of preferred payment methods ... (See Preferred payment methods)

Infographic: The cost of Halloween -- Those celebrating Halloween will spend an average of $107 this year. Our infographic shows the traditions and treats that will cost Americans an arm and a leg -- and perhaps various other body parts ... (See Halloween spending)

Infographic: Mobile banking coming up from behind -- For the first time, mobile banking has outstripped more old-fashioned methods of account maintenance, such as telephone and mail ... (See Mobile banking)

Infographic: Unemployment makes consumers critical of debt -- Those struggling to find work are more likely to look down their noses at your credit card debt, survey says ... (See Debt anxiety)

Infographic: Good credit? Issuers want you -- If you have good credit, hold out for the best deal on a new credit card, because there's a lot of competition for your business ... (See Good credit)

Infographic: Recession survivors are tackling debt -- While those shaken by the recession are still stalling on paying down debt, those who weathered the storm are quickly recovering ... (See Recession survivors)

Infographic: Women seek good credit, financial stability in long-term partners -- When it comes to a long-term partner's finances and credit scores, women may be more choosey than men ... (See Credit scores and romance)

Infographic: Cardlessness among young people up nearly 80 percent -- All age groups are increasingly shedding credit cards, according to June 2013 data from FICO. Yet no age group is ditching them faster than young people ... (See Young people going credit-cardless)

Infographic: Allowances for kids? So old-fashioned -- Allowances may die out as millennials become parents, according to an August 2013 survey from financial services firm Country Financial. ... (See Allowance)

Infographic: Gen Y embraces mobile bill pay, boomers like mail -- When it comes to paying bills, consumers -- especially young ones -- are embracing mobile, according to an August 2013 survey from Western Union. Yet more "old-fashioned" methods of payment still remain popular among all age groups ... (See Bill payment by generations)

Infographic: Consumers cutting back -- but also spending more -- Consumers are pinching pennies when it comes to small purchases, while opening their wallets for bigger ones, according to July 2013 research from Harris Interactive ... (See Saving while spending)

Infographic: Early shoppers push up back-to-school season -- Families are getting an increasingly early start on back-to-school shopping, according to a survey from the National Retail Federation ... (See Back to school)

Infographic: Men and women rate each other's financial strengths -- A survey from FleishmanHillard and Hearst Magazines asked men and women to rate each other's financial strengths. And the genders didn't always see eye to eye ... (See Rating the genders)

Infographic: Parents shelling out more on kids' summer fun -- Parents are willing to pay up to keep their children busy this summer, according to July's American Express Spending & Saving Tracker ... (See Summer spending)

Infographic: Those who don't haggle are missing out -- Although fewer than half of shoppers haggle, those who do are rewarded, according to a survey from Consumer Reports ... (See Haggling)

Infographic: Millennials swap credit cards for student loans -- More young consumers are turning their backs on credit cards and piling on student loan debt, according to research from FICO ... (See Millennials ditch credit cards, pile on student loans)

Infographic: Best, worst states for credit card delinquencies -- In what could be a sign of economic recovery, bank card lending is on the rise, according to numbers from credit bureau Experian ... (See Card delinquencies)

Infographic: Americans pick computers over financial planners -- When it comes to financial planning, Americans are turning to computer programs over living, breathing financial advisers, a Gallup poll has found ... (See Computers reign over financial planners)

Infographic: New grads wish they'd saved more for college -- The high cost of college has given the class of 2013 some financial perspective, a survey has found ... (See College costs)

Infographic: Young adults most optimistic about finances -- Americans from age 18 to 29 have an optimistic outlook on their financial futures. Things look significantly gloomier to older Americans, however ... (See Financial outlook)

Infographic: How Robo-signing works in credit card debt -- When creditors mechanically and automatically certify that credit card debt is real without any documentary evidence, it's called robo-signing, and the practice is both widespread and controversial ... (See Robo-signing credit card debt)

Infographic: The money topics your kids wish you'd talk about -- Most parents say they talk about money regularly with their kids. Their children, however, don't think these conversations are enough ... (See Family finances)

Infographic: Financial crisis inspired better money habits -- The financial crisis that started in 2007 may have forced many investors to learn things the hard way, according to research from Fidelity Investments ... (See Recession lessons)

Infographic: Most people won't discuss credit card debt -- Credit card debt is the subject people least want to discuss with a stranger, according to a poll ... (See Credit card debt)

Infographic: ATM fees on the rise -- ATM surcharges are on the rise, but consumers are pretty adept at avoiding them, according to an April 2013 report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. ... (See ATM surcharges)

Infographic: Consumers prefer mobile banking to mobile payments -- Proponents of mobile payment technology tout the convenience of leaving your wallet at home. Yet, while consumers are eager to bank by phone, they're not sold on buying by phone ... (See Mobile payments)

Infographic: More taxpayers reaching for credit cards -- Most Americans will use checking or savings accounts to pay their taxes this year. But more are reaching for credit cards ... (See Paying taxes)

Infographic: Lack of savings consumers' biggest financial worry -- To kick off Financial Literacy Month, the National Foundation for Credit Counseling asked consumers which money matters worry them most ... (See Money worries)

Infographic: Young adults ditch homeownership, rack up student loans -- While young people's post-recession lifestyles include fewer homes, fewer cars and less credit card debt, their student loan debt has skyrocketed ... (See Young adult debt)

Infographic: Debt clouds retirement optimism -- Large amounts of debt has workers feeling pessimistic about their ability to retire in financial security ... (See Retirement)

Infographic: How men, women divide money-related chores -- A 2013 TD Ameritrade survey finds that when couples tackle the household finances, women tend to do the day-to-day chores, men the long-terms plans ... (See Couples and money)

Infographic: Issuers stingier with credit post-CARD Act -- Since the CARD Act went into effect in early 2010, you need a higher credit score to get more measly credit limits, according to the American Bankers Association ... (See Credit after CARD Act)

Infographic: Credit report errors hit less-educated the hardest -- Are those with less education more likely to be victimized by credit report errors? That's what a report issued by the Federal Trade Commission suggests ... (See Credit report errors)

Infographic: In tough job market, student debt grows -- Recent grads are caving under the weight of their student loans, a TransUnion study has found ... (See Student loans)

Infographic: Women more likely than men to break up over money -- Poor money management skills and heavy debt are a turn-off, especially for women, a survey has found ... (See Love and money)

Infographic: Will credit card surcharges take hold in the U.S.? -- Australia's experience with credit card surcharges may hold some clues for what's in store for U.S. merchants and customers ... (See Surcharges)

Infographic: Buying by mobile phone hits critical mass -- Mobile payments made some headway toward the mainstream in 2012, according to research from IDC Financial Insights ... (See Mobile payments)

Infographic: Bankers predict thirst for credit in 2013 -- Consumers are going to be eating up more of their credit and asking lenders for more, according to a December 2012 survey ... (See Credit outlook)

Infographic: Groceries top list of most popular rewards programs -- When it comes to credit card rewards most desired by consumers, grocery rewards eat everyone else's lunch, according to research from American Express ... (See Grocery rewards programs)

Infographic: Credit card delinquencies on the decline -- Delinquent payments on credit cards hit an 18-year low in the third quarter of 2012, according to numbers from the American Bankers Association ... (See Delinquencies)

Infographic: 12 days of trauma injuries have devastating cost -- Holiday-related injuries fill emergency rooms -- and can be financially devastating for families who are often already spread thing this time of year ... (See Trauma injury costs)

Infographic: Gift cards seen as more valuable than higher-priced gifts -- Consumers place high value on the flexibility gift cards bring, according to a December 2012 survey by payment processing company First Data ... (See Gift cards)

Infographic: Money-related resolutions hit record high -- Saving more, shedding debt are at the top of consumers' New Year's resolution lists ... (See New Year's resolutions)

Infographic: Bill pay goes mobile -- More consumers are using their mobile phones to pay their bills, a study has found ... (See Mobile bill pay)

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Updated: 05-19-2019