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Total Consumer Debt Nearly Equivalent to Prerecession Years, Equifax Reports

November 03, 2011

ATLANTA — A report by Equifax indicated that total consumer debt is now at $11.2 trillion, nearly equivalent to the $11.1 trillion posted in 2006. Auto lending has performed consistently well this year vs. 2010, with 11.3 million new loans originated between January-July 2011, a more than 13% increase over January - July 2010.

“The impact of 2005-2007 vintage loans continues to be felt across multiple lending sectors,” said Michael Koukounas, senior vice president of Special Client Services for Equifax. “More than two-thirds of delinquent loans can be sourced to those originated during that time. In contrast, loans originated after 2008 are performing substantially better due to the tighter underwriting guidelines in place since then.”

The report revealed also that $436 billion of total new credit was originated between January-July 2011, representing the highest total for that period in three years but still well below the $805 billion originated between January-July 2006, according to Equifax. While total outstanding debt continues to decrease, consumers are beginning to utilize bank credit cards and retail credit cards more, with both sectors seeing balance increases over the past four months following four previous months of balance declines.

Total new consumer finance loan amounts have remained consistent over the last three years, with $5.2 million originated in July 2011, according to Equifax.

The company’s national analysis is sourced from data on more than 585 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide and is conducted on a monthly basis.

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