Consumer loan delinquencies fell across the board in the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31 as borrowers were helped by improving job and housing markets, the American Bankers Association said.
Total delinquencies in the 11 categories surveyed by the ABA fell to 2.49% of all accounts, from 2.59% in the prior quarter, the ABA said Thursday in its Consumer Credit Delinquency Bulletin.
“You can’t get a better consumer credit report card than this,” James Chessen, the ABA’s chief economist, said in a statement. He credited consumer deleveraging and improvements in the broader economy for the positive results.
The report marked the first time in eight years all 11 loan categories fell in the same quarter.
The ABA survey, which defines delinquency as a late payment that is 30 days or more overdue, found that credit card late payments dropped to 3.17% of all accounts, from 3.25%, equaling the lowest level since 2001, the ABA said. Home-equity credit line delinquencies fell to 1.69% of all accounts, from 1.93% in the third quarter.
“The economic tide at the end of 2011 lifted most boats,” Chessen said. “The biggest concern I have now is retail gas prices.”
Home equity loan delinquencies fell to 4.08% in the fourth quarter, from 4.12% three months earlier as the housing market moved closer to stabilization.