US Consumer Credit Outstanding Shrinks Month-Over-Month but Rises Year-Over Year in August

On Wednesday (10-11-23), the Federal Reserve released its latest G.19 Consumer Credit report. According to the report, with additional analysis provided by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), consumer credit outstanding reached a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of $4.97 trillion in August. This is a decrease of $15.6 billion over the month but $188.8 billion, or 3.9%, higher than in August 2022. The monthly decline resulted from a 0.8% drop in nonrevolving credit outstanding that was partially offset by a 1.2% increase in revolving credit.

The level of revolving debt—primarily credit card debt—rose $14.7 billion over the month and $122.9 billion year-over-year (SAAR). Revolving debt outstanding has increased for two consecutive months by a total of $24.3 billion (SAAR), or 1.9%.

Revolving and nonrevolving debt accounted for 25.9% and 74.1% of total consumer debt, respectively. Since reaching a 32-year low in April 2021, revolving consumer credit outstanding as a share of the total has increased to a level not seen since July 2019.

The NAHB notes that credit card interest rates have increased 61 basis points since May, reaching a record-high of 22.77% in August. The average credit card interest rate has increased 434 basis points, or 23.6%, over the past 12 months. Auto loan rates have surged 336 basis points, or 74.3%, since early 2022.

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