Consumer borrowing soars to record levels

Americans increased their borrowing in May at the fastest pace in a year. Borrowing in the category that includes credit cards reached its highest point since the fall of 2010.

FILE - (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)

Tips from Knoxville's CredAbility for student borrowers

  • Work prior to college or even during college.
  • Only take out loans for school, books and supplies. Don't borrow for living expenses. That apartment will end up costing you four times what it should.
  • Research scholarships ahead of time.
  • Consider starting at a two year college or junior college.
  • Try to live at home to avoid adding a dorm or apartment to the bill.

WASHINGTON (AP/WVLT) Americans increased their borrowing in May at the fastest pace in a year. Borrowing in the category that includes credit cards reached its highest point since the fall of 2010.

Increased borrowing can be a sign that consumers are feeling more confident.

The Federal Reserve says consumers increased their borrowing by $19.6 billion in May compared with April. That was the biggest jump since a $19.9 billion increase in May 2012.

Total borrowing reached a record $2.84 trillion.

The category that includes credit card use rose $6.6 billion, also the largest gain in a year. Credit card debt reached $847.1 billion, the highest level since September 2010 but still below the 2008 peak.

Borrowing on autos and student loans increased $13 billion.

The numbers come just a week after Congress failed to stop an interest increase for subsidized Stafford loans. Interest jumped to 6.8%, but could be reversed back to the original 3.4% following a vote by the Senate Wednesday.


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