December 2023 U.S. National Consumer Credit Trends Reports

February 09, 2024

AS OF DECEMBER 2023, TOTAL U.S. CONSUMER NON-MORTGAGE DEBT WRITE-OFFS HAVE INCREASED to $10.24 billion, up from $9.83 billion in November 2023. The year-to-date non-mortgage write-off number is now at $111.7 billion, an increase of 53.4% vs. December 2022. Write-offs are defined as accounts in bankruptcy or severe derogatory status.

Outstanding balances on U.S. bankcards continue to increase to $1.02 trillion, up 12.6% from December 2022. However, the average bankcard utilization only increased slightly, from 20.9% in December 2022 to 21.7% in December 2023. 

Additionally, auto loan and lease delinquencies continue to increase, to $1.63 trillion, up 3.8% from December 2022.

Consumer Credit Observations: 

  • As of December 2023, total U.S. consumer debt was $17.27 trillion dollars, up 2.5% from December 2022. 

  • Mortgage debt, including home equity loans, accounts for $12.51 trillion, making up 72.4% of total U.S. consumer debt. 

    • First mortgages are 95.8% of mortgage debt outstanding.

    • Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOCs) are 2.7% of mortgage debt outstanding.

  • Non-mortgage debt totaled $4.76 trillion in December 2023 and breaks down into: 

    • 34.3% is from auto loans and leases.

    • 31.9% is from student loans.

    • 22.9% is from credit card balances.

  • Non-mortgage consumer debt write-offs came in at $10.24 billion, an increase of 40.06% from December 2022. 

Auto Loans and Leases Observations: 

  • Total outstanding balances on auto loans and leases have increased 3.8% year-over-year to $1.631 trillion. 

  • The number of outstanding accounts has increased 0.1% to 86.6 million from December 2022 to December 2023. 

  • The severe balance delinquency (60+ days past due) rate in December 2023 was 1.54%, which is 17 basis points higher than December 2022. 

Bankcard Portfolio Observations: 

  • Outstanding balances on bankcards increased 12.6% year-over-year to $1.02 trillion from December 2022 to December 2023. 

  • The number of outstanding accounts is 547.5 million, a 4.8% increase from December 2022 to December 2023. 

  • The severe balance delinquency rate (60+ days past due) as of December 2023 was 3.02%. In December 2022, the rate was 2.11%. 

  • Average bankcard utilization for December 2023 was 21.7% compared to 20.9% in December 2022. 

Equifax publishes monthly U.S. Consumer Credits -  including information on private-label credit cards, consumer finance, student loans, and credit originations. Visit our site for U.S. economic and credit insights. To view our top three trends across the globe from the first half of 2023, please visit our site for Global Credit Trends.