Special Report

States with the Highest (and Lowest) Credit Card Debt

States with the Least Credit Card Debt

5. Louisiana
> Credit card debt: $5,856
> Median household income: $42,505 (10th lowest)
> Average credit score: 635 (3rd lowest)
> Cost of living: 20th lowest

Louisiana is a relatively poor state, with the 10th-lowest median household income in the country. The low income keeps spending levels low too. The average credit card debt among Louisiana residents is the fifth-lowest in the country. This does not prevent state residents from having financial troubles — their average credit score of 635 is the third worst in the country. Two Louisiana cities — Shreveport and Monroe — were recently included in a list of the largest U.S. cities with the lowest credit scores in the country.

4. Utah
> Credit card debt: $5,816
> Median household income: $54,744 (13th highest)
> Average credit score: 673 (5th highest)
> Cost of living: 5th lowest

Utah is relatively wealthy, with a median household income of nearly $55,000. Despite this, the cost of living in the state is the fifth-lowest in the country. With high incomes and a low cost of living, Utahns maintain conservative personal debt, illustrated by their fifth-highest average credit score.

3. Alabama
> Credit card debt: $5,770
> Median household income: $40,474 (5th lowest)
> Average credit score: 637 (5th lowest)
> Cost of living: 12th lowest

Alabama is another poor southern state. Each household makes approximately $40,500 — the fifth-lowest median income in the country. A relatively low cost of living may have contributed to Alabama residents having one of the lowest levels of credit card debt in the country, but it did not help their credit scores. Alabama has one of the lowest average credit score in the country. Alabama was named by U.S. News as one of the most frugal states in the country.

2. Mississippi
> Credit card debt: $5,276
> Median household income: $36,851 (the lowest)
> Average credit score: 652 (18th highest)
> Cost of living: 10th lowest

Mississippi residents have the second-lowest amount of credit card debt in the country. They also have the lowest median household income, at $36,851. On top of this, the cost of living in the state is the 10th lowest. Unlike Alabama, however, residents manage to maintain relatively high credit scores — the state average is the nation’s 18th highest. Mississippi also was named as one of the most frugal states by U.S. News.

1. Wisconsin
> Credit card debt: $5,062
> Median household income: $49,001 (22nd highest)
> Average credit score: 662 (14th highest)
> Cost of living: 25th lowest

Wisconsin has the lowest average credit card debt in the country. This appears to be the result of frugality. The state has a higher median household income than many other states with low average credit card debts. The low level of credit card debt in the state cannot be simply explained by a low cost of living as it is not especially low in the state. The fiscal responsibility of Wisconsinites is fairly high, demonstrated by their average credit score, which is the country’s 14th highest.