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Experian: Auto Loan Delinquencies Increase
SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (5/15/13)--U.S. automotive-loan delinquency and repossession rates increased in the first quarter, announced Experian Automotive Tuesday. However, repossession rates are down for credit unions from the same time last year.

Thirty-day auto-loan delinquencies rose 1.3%, 60-day delinquencies increased 12.4% and repossessions rose 16.9%, compared with last year, according to the most recent State of Automotive Finance report.

"Obviously, we never want to see a rise in delinquencies or repossessions, but when you compare the current findings with previous years, they are still lower than the recession-level rates," said Melinda Zabritski, Experian senior director of automotive credit.

"As we continue to move forward, we should start to see more increases as some of the subprime loans coming onto the books begin to deteriorate. However, one thing most lenders will agree upon is that today's subprime borrower is less delinquent than those in the past."

Automotive repossessions jumped 16.9%, going to 0.50% in the first quarter from 0.43% in first quarter 2012, the report indicated. While repossession rates for banks, captives and credit unions are down year over year by as much as 14.9%, rates for finance companies increased 52.1%. In spite of the increase, overall repossession rates are still relatively low when compared with the peak rate of 0.71% in first quarter 2010, Experian said.

Other report findings:

  • Total dollar volume of automotive loans grew 9.6% in the first quarter, reaching $726 billion, compared with $663 billion in first quarter 2012;
  • Credit unions increased loan portfolios by $14 billion, banks increased by $20 billion, finance companies by $18 billion, and captive finance companies by $12 billion;
  • Average charge-off amounts for defaulted loans were $7,401 in the first quarter, up from $6,739 in first quarter 2012; and
  • Charge-offs still are below recession levels, with first quarter 2009 average charge-offs at $10,126.
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