As per a recent credit trend report published by Equifax Inc. (EFX), consumer delinquency rates for bankcards, first mortgages and home equity lines of credit increased on a month-to-month basis in November 2009.
Home mortgage rates touched another record of 7.91% in November, up from 7.76% recorded in the month of October and 7.65% in the prior month. This has increased substantially over 5.83% recorded in November 2008 and 3.93% in November 2007.
This apart, home equity lines of credit (HELOC) available to consumers have come down significantly by $68.0 billion, and the number of accounts are also lower by 855,000 than the September 2008 peak of approximately 14.5 million accounts.
Most importantly, as per the Equifax report, delinquency rates have moved up from 3.39% in October to 3.43% in November. These rates were much above the 2.95% rate of November 2008 and the 1.92% rate of November 2007. On the other hand, U.S. consumers achieved a 5.0% reduction in debt level or $575.0 billion compared to the year-ago level.
Credit card debts also reduced sharply by 7.30% and auto loans by 9.50%. The declines put overall consumer debt to about $11.0 trillion, almost at par with the pre-recession levels. Equifax has secured these data from nearly 200 million files of U.S. consumers, who are using different forms of credit.
This data makes us believe that U.S. consumers need to put in lot of effort before they can square off their debt burden.