Consumer Payment Card News

Americans $1T Card Debt – Brits Smokin – Aussies Downshift

U.S. consumer revolving credit for March, mostly credit card debt, continued to hover at the $1 trillion milestone set in December, growing at a solid clip annually. 

While climbing steadily throughout 2016, consumer revolving credit increased at a 2.4% annual rate of growth in March, compared to a revised +2.0% annual rate in February and a revised +4.8% annual rate in January, according to CardFlash and CardData.

Non-revolving credit increased at an annual rate of +6.2%.

Total revolving credit for March posted at $999.8 billion, compared to a revised $997.9 billion in February, and a revised $996.2 billion in January, according to the Federal Reserve.

U.K. consumer credit growth remained strong in March, despite the Brexit uncertainty, after rising in February to its highest annual growth rate of the past twelve months. The year-on-year (YOY) rise jumped 150 basis points (bps) in March, according to CardFlash and CardData.

In March total consumer credit grew to £197.4 billion. The three-month annualized and twelve-month growth rates, seasonally adjusted (SA), were 10.2% and 10.2% respectively. The Bank of England (BOE) reports consumer credit increased by £1.6 billion in March, inline with the average over the previous six months.

Within consumer credit, credit card lending increased by £0.5 billion in March, compared to an average of £0.5 billion over the prior six months. Other loans and advances increased by £1.1 billion, compared to the average of £1.0 billion over the previous six months.

Australian credit card outstandings edged down by 0.8% year-on-year (YOY) in March. Credit card credit limits increased 0.9% YOY and the number of credit card accounts rose 1.3% YOY in March.

The average balance per account in March declined 0.4% YOY to AU$3126, compared to AU$3150 for February, and AU$3139 for March 2016, according to CardFlash and CardData.

Credit card outstandings for March hit AU$52.2 billion, compared to AU$52.6 billion in the prior month, and AU$51.8 billion in March 2016.

Credit card credit limits for March hit AU$151.4 billion, compared to AU$151.3 billion in the prior month, and AU$150.1 billion in March 2016.

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