Overall consumer borrowing grew from October to November but decelerated to the slowest pace since January as Americans took out fewer loans for big-ticket items such as cars and education.
Auto and student loans increased at the slowest pace in the last 10 months, according to the Federal Reserve’s monthly consumer credit report.
The Fed said consumer credit rose $14 billion in November, or at a 4.8% annual rate, to $3.53 trillion. That’s the smallest monthly rise since January and is down from a 5.4% annual rate in October and a robust 9.9% rate in September.
Revolving credit, mostly credit cards, rose at an annual 7.4% rate, stronger than October, when it increased at a slim 0.1% annual rate.
Nonrevolving credit, made up largely of auto or student loans, slowed to a 3.8% annual rate in November from a 7.3% rate in October. It’s the slowest annual rate since October 2011.
Data released earlier Friday suggest a robust labor market that could boost Americans’ willingness to borrow. The economy produced 292,000 jobs in December, the Labor Department said Friday, with upward revisions to prior months.
The Fed expects domestic demand to power the economy in coming quarters despite a weaker global economy, primarily in Asia.
The median of predictions from 25 economists surveyed by Bloomberg showed total borrowing would increase by $18 billion in November, according to the article. Their estimates ranged from increases of $14 billion to $21.5 billion.