US consumer borrowing up $20.5 billion in October

FILE - In this June 15, 2017, file photo, credit cards are displayed in Haverhill, Mass. On Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, the Federal Reserve releases its October report on consumer borrowing. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola, File)

WASHINGTON — American consumers increased their borrowing by $20.5 billion in October. It was the biggest gain in 11 months and reflected strong increases in the use of credit cards and in auto and student loans.

The October followed a $19.2 billion gain in September and was the best showing since November 2016, the Federal Reserve reported Thursday.

The category that covers auto loans and student loans was up $12.2 billion, slightly slower than the $13.2 billion rise in September. Borrowing in the category that covers credit cards rose by $8.3 billion, up from a $6 billion increase in September and the strongest showing since November.

The solid gains were good signs for strength in consumer spending heading into the holiday shopping season. Consumer spending accounts for 70 percent of economic activity.

Reports from the retailers have indicated a strong start to the holiday season with shoppers buying more than last year.

The U.S. economy, as measured by the gross domestic product, grew at a healthy rate of 3.3 percent in the July-September quarter after a 3.1 percent rate in the spring. It marked the first back-to-back quarterly gains above 3 percent in three years.

The overall gain in borrowing pushed consumer credit to a new record of $3.8 trillion. The Federal Reserve's monthly consumer credit report does not cover home mortgages or any other loans secured by real estate such as home equity loans.

People also read these

Florida officials go into damage-control mode...

Aug 6, 2016

Worried about Florida's all-important tourism industry, state officials are going into...

Trump ignites new firestorm: Gun backers might...

Aug 10, 2016

Donald Trump sets off a fresh political firestorm by suggesting gun rights supporters might find a...

Father of Orlando shooter sighted at Hillary...

Aug 10, 2016

Father of Orlando gay nightclub shooter spotted at Hillary Clinton campaign event in central Florida

Delta struggles through third day of computer...

Aug 10, 2016

Delta Air Lines had more than 300 cancellations globally before operations return to normal later...

Ex-New England mob boss arrested on charge he...

Aug 10, 2016

Former New England Mafia boss Francis "Cadillac Frank" Salemme (sah-LEHM'-ee) has been ordered held...

About Us

The World Insiders brings you exclusive coverage from across the globe in a timely, easy to consume format sourced directly from our regional media partners.

Contact us: sales[at]theworldinsiders.com

Subscribe Now!