Is the consumer debt bubble finally starting to burst? If the latest numbers on delinquent credit card accounts are any indication, that appears to be precisely what is happening. As I noted the other day, Americans currently have 480 million credit cards, and they are carrying 870 billion dollars worth of balances on those cards. That is one giant pile of debt, but there won’t be a problem as long as the vast majority of Americans regularly make their credit card payments. Unfortunately, the number of credit card accounts that are delinquent has been steadily rising, and now we are being told that the number of “seriously delinquent” accounts has shot up to 37 million…
At the end of 2018, Americans struggled to make payments on the country’s $870 billion worth of credit card debt.
About 37 million credit card accounts were marked as seriously delinquent in the fourth quarter, meaning they were 90 or more days past due, an increase of two million from the same period a year earlier.
Remember, those accounts are not just behind. We are talking about accounts that are at least 90 days past due.
It appears that the credit card industry has a burgeoning crisis on their hands.
Meanwhile, the number of Americans that are behind on their auto loan payments has reached an unprecedented level as well.
At this moment, more than 7 million Americans are delinquent on their auto loan payments. That is a brand new all-time record, and it smashes the highest level that we witnessed during the last recession by about a million.
If things are this bad already, how high will these numbers go once we get really deep into the next recession?
The student loan debt
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