Increasing unemployment, fewer options for refinancing and volatile energy prices may lead to record highs for credit-card losses in the U.S. next year, according to Fitch Ratings. Already this year, credit-card losses have jumped to as much as 7% of the loan portfolio, and the situation is likely to worsen. "Fitch expects credit metrics will continue to deteriorate in fourth quarter 2008 and into 2009, with some issuers surpassing historical loss peaks before 2009 is over," the rating agency said in a statement.

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