Paul Sakuma, Associated Press
This July 30, 2008, file photo, shows credit card stickers posted at a bowling alley in Palo Alto, Calif.

Financial experts blame a lack of financial literacy for misunderstandins about credit and personal finance that overwhelm the average consumer, according to a release from Credit Card Select, a credit card comparison company.

A recent study from consumer credit reporting agency Equifax says the number of new credit cards opened rose by nearly 37 percent in February compared to last year.

While new cards have risen, more than 40 percent of Americans said they don’t consider themselves financially literate, according to the 2012 Consumer Financial Literacy Survey conducted by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

“Before the Credit CARD Act, 100 percent of the cards we looked at included practices regulators found to be harmful or unfair," Nick Bourke, director of the Pew research group’s Safe Credit Cards Project, told Credit Card Select. "The [credit] market really wasn't working. It was much more difficult for consumers to identify a good card from a bad one.”

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