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Consumer credit defaults stay on post-recession lows

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Consumer credit defaults continued to decline in April, marking fresh post-recession lows.

The composite Standard & Poor’s/Experian index dropped to 1.86%, it’s lowest level since July 2007, from 1.96% in March. It’s the fourth monthly decline in a row after defaults ticked up at the end of last year.

First mortgage and second mortgage defaults also fell in April to 1.76% and 0.93%, respectively, new lows since July 2007 and August 2005.

“April data show the continuation of the positive trend we saw in the first quarter of 2012,” David Blitzer, head of S&P’s index committee, said in a news release. “Not only have we continued the general downward trend in consumer default rates that began in the spring of 2009, but we appear to be reaching new lows across many of the loan types.”

Of the four categories measured, only bankcard defaults rose from March, up slightly to 4.49% from 4.47%.

Four of the five metropolitan areas in the index fell month-to-month, while Los Angeles default rates remained flat.

The monthly index measures first-time defaults and covers roughly $11 trillion in outstanding loans in Experian’s database.



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