In the first quarter of 2022, non-real estate secured consumer credit, per the Federal Reserve’s latest G.19 Consumer Credit report, grew at a seasonal adjusted annual rate of 9.7%, with revolving debt growing at 21.4% and nonrevolving at 6.1%. Total consumer credit currently stands at $4.5 trillion, with $1.1 trillion in revolving debt and $3.4 trillion in non-revolving debt. From the previous quarter, total consumer credit increased by $107 billion, with revolving debt and non-revolving debt increasing by $56 billion and $51 billion, respectively.
As the G.19 data are not inflation adjusted, it is reasonable to assume that part of the consumer credit growth, notably revolving debt, owes to recent price levels’ skyrocketing. However, even after adjusting for inflation, American households’ appetite for services increased (in part due to the lifting of COVID restrictions) and for goods was forcibly reduced. On the other hand, nonrevolving debt, which is closed-ended credit, grew moderately and was higher than pre-pandemic levels.
With every quarterly G.19 report, the Federal Reserve releases a memo item covering student and motor vehicle loans’ outstanding levels on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. The most recent memo item indicates that, as of the first quarter of 2021, student loans stood at $1.8 trillion and motor vehicle loans stood at $1.3 trillion. Annualized, the changes in these two categories from the previous quarter are $58.4 billion and $83.6 billion, respectively. Together, these loans’ make up 90% of non-revolving debt (NSA), a share that has held approximately constant historically. Rising production costs resulting from ongoing supply chain issues and high interest rates have together kept car prices and, effectively, auto loan debt elevated.