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As debt grows, collectors get aggressive

As the economy sinks deeper into a slump, Americans find it tougher to come up with extra money to chip away at their debts. And as the debt piles up, more consumers are getting calls from debt collectors looking for payment.

Debt collecting is a booming industry. Outstanding consumer debt reached $2.59 trillion in September, an increase of $6.9 billion over August.

There are roughly 5500 debt collection agencies nationwide that made more than 1 billion contacts with consumers in 2007, according to ACA International, a trade association for the collection industry. And most industry experts expect those numbers to grow.


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