Increase in Consumers' Revolving Credit Hits 12-Month High

Total consumer credit outstanding increased $19.6 billion (0.7%) to $2.84 trillion from April to May, according to a Federal Reserve report (link opens a PDF) released today.

After bumping up 0.4% in April, analysts had expected a slight $13 billion increase for May.

Revolving credit (no fixed number of payments, e.g., credit cards) packed the most punch, increasing a seasonally adjusted 9.3% for May. After March's 1.1% dip and April's 1.1% recovery, this month's increase is the largest in 12 months, according to The Wall Street Journal, and puts revolving credit on a sharp upward trend.

Non-revolving credit (fixed installments, e.g., car payments) also recorded a significant jump, up a seasonally adjusted 7.9%.

Non-revolving credit has generally improved at a faster rate than revolving credit, up 8.5% in 2012 compared to revolving credit's 0.4% bump. More recently, revolving credit clocked in at a seasonally adjusted 1.5% gain for Q1 2013, while non-revolving credit recorded a 7.8% increase.

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