Consumer revolving credit, mostly credit card debt, resumed its downward trend in February, after rebounding slightly in January. Americans clipped a record $8 billion off total consumer revolving credit in February. Lower credit limits and reduced personal income appear to be contributing factors to the sluggish growth. Revolving credit now stands at $955.7 billion in February and declining at a 9.7% annual rate. In December, revolving credit dipped by a revised $6.5 billion reflecting an annual contraction ratio of 8.2%, according to data released by the Federal Reserve. Bank credit card debt (excluding store and gas credit cards) at the end of the fourth quarter was about $817 billion or roughly 85% of total revolving credit, according to CardData (“www.carddata.com”:http://www.carddata.com). Store and gas credit cards had about $100 billion in outstandings at year-end 2008. At the end of February, Americans were $2564 billion in debt, excluding home mortgages.
REVOLVING CREDIT HISTORICAL ($billions) Feb 09 Jan 09 Dec 08 Nov 08 Oct 08 Sep 08 GRWTH: -9.7% 2.4 -8.2 -7.1 -0.1 -0.6 $OWED: $955.7 963.5 961.6 968.1 976.8 976.8 Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 4/7/09; For complete historical data, visit CardData (www.carddata.com)