US Consumer Borrowing Slowed in February, Fed Says
Consumer borrowing rose at a slower pace in February as a surge in the use of credit cards was offset by a slackening in demand for student loans and auto loans, the Federal Reserve said Friday.
The central bank said credit card debt rose by $2.95 billion in February, the largest increase since November 2018.
Meanwhile, borrowing for auto loans and student loans rose by $12.2 billion, the smallest gain since last June.
Overall, borrowing increased by $15.2 billion in February, down from a gain of $17.7 billion in January, the Fed said.
Lending by the federal government, which is mainly for student loans, expanded by $5.6 billion before seasonal adjustment.
The overall increases pushed consumer borrowing to a new record of $4.05 trillion.
Consumer borrowing is watched for signs of how confident consumers are in taking on more debt to finance their spending, which accounts for 70 percent of economic activity.
Economists believe the rate of borrowing has begun to pick up, and the change should be evident beginning with the Fed’s next report.
In The News
WASHINGTON — Wall Street could soon get one of its most consequential wins of the Trump era as regulators are considering ripping up a rule that’s forced banks to set aside billions of dollars for swaps trades, according to people familiar with the matter. At issue... Read More
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — The latest and most destructive attacks on Saudi oil facilities provide stark evidence of the vulnerability of global crude supply in an age of disruptive technologies that can bring a century-old industry to its knees — at least temporarily. From remote-controlled... Read More
DETROIT — Members of the United Auto Workers went on strike at General Motors Co. plants nationwide at midnight Sunday night, sending 46,000 workers to picket lines in the union’s first walkout since the automaker emerged from taxpayer-funded bankruptcy a decade ago. The UAW on Sunday... Read More
WASHINGTON — The Trump administration announced Thursday that it is repealing an Obama-era clean water rule that had placed limits on polluting chemicals that could be used near streams, wetlands and other bodies of water. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the repeal of the 2015... Read More
WASHINGTON - A far-reaching broadband connectivity should not be dictated by the location of a home or business, but rather should foster economic growth and sustainable communities by being equally accessible by all. That was the overarching message delivered to the House Small Business Subcommittee on... Read More
WASHINGTON - Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., couldn't be happier that the House Wednesday passed a pair of bills blocking offshore oil drilling in almost all waters around the United States. But in an interview with The Well News, he acknowledged that the real work lies ahead... Read More