US consumer credit up a record $28.9 billion in September

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer borrowing jumped by a record amount in September, driven higher by big gains in borrowing for auto and student loans.

The Federal Reserve says consumer borrowing increased $28.9 billion, the largest one-month increase on record going back to 1941. It followed a gain of $16 billion in August and pushed total consumer borrowing to an all-time high of $3.5 trillion.

The big September gain reflected a $22.2 billion increase in the category that covers auto loans and student loans and a $6.7 billion increase in credit card borrowing.

Economists believe consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of economic activity, will remain strong in coming months as a healthy labor market makes consumers more confident about spending and financing part of their purchases by taking on more debt.