Data through January 2013, released by S&P Dow Jones Indices and Experian for the S&P/Experian Consumer Credit Default Indices, a comprehensive measure of changes in consumer credit defaults, showed a decrease in national default rates during the month. The national composite was 1.63 percent in January 2013, down from 1.72 percent in December 2012. The first mortgage default rate moved down to 1.58 percent in January, from 1.68 percent in December. The second mortgage rate was unchanged at 0.69 percent since December. Auto loan default rates increased marginally in January posting 1.10 percent, up from the 1.09 percent December level. The bank card default rate hit the lowest post-recession pace of 3.41 percent in January; it was 3.53 percent in December.
“The beginning of 2013 continued the positive trend in consumer credit quality that we witnessed in 2012”, says David M. Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the Index Committee for S&P Dow Jones Indices. “The first mortgage and bank card default rates moved down, the second mortgage remained flat and auto loans were marginally up in January. All loan types remain below their respective levels a year ago.
“The national composite rate was 1.63 percent in January 2013, nine basis points below the December 2012 rate. It was primarily driven by the first mortgage rate, which was at 1.58 percent in January, 10 basis points below the previous month. Three of the five cities we cover showed decreases in their default rates in January-Chicago, was down by five basis points, Dallas by seven and Los Angeles by three basis points," Blitzer added, "New York was marginally higher by two basis points. The major increase was Miami, up 38 basis points. Default rates in Miami went up for the third consecutive month; in January 2013 it was 1.01 percentage points above the October 2012 level. Miami had the highest default rate at 3.45 percent and Dallas-the lowest at 1.19 percent. All five cities remain below default rates they posted a year ago, in January 2012.”