Credit card debt rose in the United States from April through June by $46 billion, a 5.5% increase over the first quarter, as Americans borrowed billions of dollars to continue spending, according to a report on Tuesday, August 2, from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
The increase of 13% from the second quarter of 2021 to the second quarter of 2022 was the biggest jump in more than 20 years.
The number of new credit card accounts rose by 233 million in the quarter.
The one piece of good news in the report was that delinquency rates remained relatively low. Although the New York Fed did note rising delinquencies among sub-prime and low-income borrowers with “rates approaching pre-pandemic levels.”
The report found that total household debt increased in the second quarter by $312 billion, or 2%, compared with the first quarter. Total balances are now $2 trillion higher than before the pandemic.
Mortgage balances saw the largest increase, a result of the Federal Reserve raising interest rates to cool down the housing market. Auto loans also went up, with balances in the second quarter increasing by $33 billion, which is on track with increases since 2011, according to the report.