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Market
Strong consumer lending driven by auto sector
ATLANTA (6/5/14)--In alignment with the recent surge in auto sales, the automotive lending sector continues to post big numbers this year, according to the Equifax National Consumer Credit Trends Report, released this week.

Total outstanding loan balances for autos rose to $884 billion in April, a record high and a 10.8% climb year-over-year.

Nearly $70 billion in new credit had been issued by February, which is a 13% jump annually as well, and only 1% of total current outstanding balances for autos are considered seriously delinquent.

"The boom in auto purchases ended in 2004, and people are now thinking about replacing their jalopies as the average car on the road today is over 11.4 years old, and the financing terms are favorable for those with decent credit histories," said Amy Crews Cutts, Equifax chief economist.

While by no means as strongly as autos, mortgages also appear to be trending higher this year, the report found.

First mortgages posted an increase of 2.7% in April year-over-year, while delinquencies plummeted 24% over that same stretch.

New home-equity revolving credit also posted five-year highs in February--both in total new credit and total number of loans.

Finally, the total balance of home-equity installment loans dropped 13.3% year-over-year; the total number of home-equity installment loans outstanding sank 11% over the same period; and the total balance of severely delinquent home-equity installment loans sits at a five-year low, decreasing 35% from levels seen a year ago.


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