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Improving Economy Results in Lower Mortgage Default Rates
May 21, 2013

Data through April 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 hit its post-recession low of 1.42 percent in April, down from 1.50 percent in March. The first mortgage default rate moved down to 1.31 percent in April from 1.41 percent in March. The auto loan default rate posted a 1.07 percent rate in April, down from its 1.11 percent March level. The bank card default rate increased in April, it posted 3.61 percent in April vs. 3.51 percent in March. “Consumer financial condition continues to improve," said David M. Blitzer, Managing Director and Chairman of the Index Committee for S&P Dow Jones Indices. “Continued improvements in the economy and declining consumer debt are resulting in lower consumer default rates for mortgages and automobiles. Bank cards, where default patterns are more volatile, saw a small uptick in the latest month. While unemployment remains elevated, these data suggest that for many consumers the recession is definitely behind us. “All five cities saw lower default rates in April. Chicago, Los Angeles and Miami hit new post-recession lows. Miami was down by 0.72 percentage points since March and 1.00 percentage point since February 2013. Dallas was down by 0.20 percentage points, Chicago by 0.14, and Los Angeles by 0.12 percentage points. New York was marginally down by 0.01 percentage point. Miami had the highest default rate at 2.21 percent and Dallas - the lowest at 1.00 percent among the five cities. All five cities remain below default rates they posted a year ago, in April 2012.”
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