Sunday, January 10, 2010

Consumer Deleveraging Continues

Business Week details:

Consumer credit in the U.S. dropped a record $17.5 billion in November as unemployment close to a 26- year high discouraged borrowing and banks limited access to loans.

A labor market that’s shed 7.2 million jobs since the recession started in December 2007 is restraining consumer spending that accounts for about 70 percent of the economy. Fed policy makers have said tighter bank lending standards and reductions in credit lines are hampering the recovery.

The series of 10 straight declines in consumer credit was the longest since record-keeping began in 1943.
The chart below shows the change in consumer credit outstanding (year over year) as a percent of total personal consumption. In the latest period consumers have shed almost 0.82% of consumer credit outstanding as a percent of all personal consumption.

Source: Federal Reserve

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