Morning Business Memo

Jan 5, 2012 7:05am

Credit cards are a really expensive way to borrow money. A new report from CreditCards.com says the average interest rate is over 15 percent, and close to a record high. The credit card tracking site says consumers with poor credit histories pay around 25 percent. Late payment penalties are also rising. But at least your monthly bill may become easier to understand. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has proposed new language for monthly credit card statements.

How strong was the holiday shopping season? More retailers release their December numbers today. Costco says same store sales rose 7 percent compared with year before. Fashion retailer American Apparel reports stronger than expected revenues – up 12 percent.

Rents are going up as apartment vacancy rates fall to 10-year lows. Reis – the property information firm – says the vacancy rate during last year’s 4th quarter fell to 5.2 percent from 6.6 percent a year earlier. The trend comes as more Americans either prefer renting to buying, or find it difficult to obtain a home loan.

What’s the future for Eastman Kodak? Shares of the iconic photography company dropped to an all-time low. They’re now worth less than 50 cents each. The Wall Street Journal reports Kodak is preparing to seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the coming weeks.

Richard Davies Business Correspondent ABC NEWS Radio twitter.com/daviesabc

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