WASHINGTON (4/8/13)--Consumers ' debt in February rose $18.1 billion or 7.8%, seasonally adjusted, the highest jump in borrowing in six months, according to the Federal Reserve's Consumer Credit report released Friday.
Consumers borrowed more than $2.799 trillion during the month. Of that amount, $246.1 billion was borrowed from credit unions.
Most economists surveyed had forecast February's debt would expand by $15 billion (BusinessInsider.com and The Wall Street Journal April 5). The $18.1 billion debt increase compares with January's increase of $12.7 billion or 5.5% (MarketWatch April 5).
The $2.799 trillion in debt compares with $2.780.9 trillion in January and $2.650.9 trillion during first quarter of 2012.
The $246.1 billion members borrowed from credit unions also reflects an increase--from $245.7 billion borrowed in January, and $223 billion in first quarter last year.
Nonrevolving debt--auto loans, personal loans and student loans--totaled $1.951 trillion overall in February--a 10.9% gain from the $1.933.5 trillion borrowed in January. During first quarter 2012, nonrevolving debt totaled more than $1.808 trillion.
At credit unions, nonrevolving debt for February totaled $206.7 billion, up from $206.3 billion in January and $186.6 billion in first quarter 2012.
Overall revolving credit rose 0.8% as consumers began to use their charge cards more frequently for a few expenses. Consumers charged $848 billion--up from $847.5 billion in January and from first quarter 2012's total of $842.2 billion.
At credit unions, members charged the same amount as in January: $39.4 billion, compared with $36.4 billion in revolving debt during the first quarter of 2012.
Debt held in real estate, such as home equity loans and mortgage loans, is not included in the Fed's Consumer Credit G.19 report.
To view the report, use the link.