Auto Loan Debt Per Borrower Rises for 11th Straight Quarter to $16,769

Auto Loan Debt Per Borrower Rises for 11th Straight Quarter to $16,769U.S. consumers pushed auto loan debt higher for the 11th straight quarter by the end of 2013, reported the credit bureau TransUnion Tuesday.
Auto loan debt per borrower increased 4.4 percent from $16,060 in the Q4 2012 to $16,769 in Q4 2013.
On a quarterly basis, auto loan debt also increased from $16,685 in Q3 2013.
The auto loan delinquency rate (the ratio of borrowers 60 days or more delinquent on their auto loans) increased to 1.14 percent in Q4 2013, up on both a quarterly and yearly basis (from 1.04 percent in Q3 2013 and 1.09 percent in Q4 2012).
The delinquency rate remains below the Q4 average of 1.29 percent seen between 2007 and 2013.
“While we observed an uptick in auto loan delinquencies, there are reasons to believe they will continue to remain relatively low in the near future,” said Pete Turek, vice president of automotive in TransUnion’s financial services business unit.
While auto loan originations are increasing at a good clip, the percentage of non-prime accounts remains low.
Actually, the percentage of non-prime borrowers for all auto loan accounts was lower in Q4 2013 than it was the previous year.
TransUnion recorded 60.5 million auto loan accounts as of Q4 2013, up from 57.0 million in Q4 2012. Viewed one quarter in arrears (to ensure all accounts are included in the data), new account originations increased to 6.64 million in Q3 2013, up from 5.99 million in Q3 2012.
The subprime delinquency rate (those consumers with a VantageScore 2.0 credit score lower than 641 on a scale of 501-990) increased from 5.73 percent in Q4 2012 to 6.12 percent in Q4 2013.
“While this is nearly a 7% yearly increase, it should be noted that subprime delinquencies remain below levels we observed during the recession,” said Turek.

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