With fewer and fewer Americans defaulting on their credit card obligations these days, creditors are very happy indeed. The significant decline in charge offs leads to lenders being able to extend more credit card offers to a wider cross-section of borrowers so consumers can anticipate a flurry of promotional material after the New Year begins.
In 2010, credit card defaults soared to a whopping 10.4% but have since dipped to half that figure. One analyst at Moody`s credit rating agency forecasts that, next year, charge-offs will drop to 4%. Throughout the past two years card issuers have competed fiercely amongst themselves to sign up only the most creditworthy consumers for new lines of credit while simultaneously shrinking the credit limits and terminating the accounts of lower credit score-bearing customers.
With their balance sheets all tidied up, credit card companies are on the hunt for new customers – specifically some of those same cardholders they were eager to get rid of during the height of the country-wide economic crisis.
According to the Associated Press, credit scoring agency TransUnion released data that revealed almost a quarter-million new credit card accounts were opened between June and September by “consumers who had had some trouble making payments in the past, as indicated by their moderate credit scores.”
Granting more people an opportunity to access credit via a credit card will definitely help out some financially struggling consumers, but an increased ability to borrow can often be problematic – particularly for individuals who may have gotten themselves into trouble with credit in the past.
However, much of the data being compiled by credit card companies indicates that the vast majority of consumers are opting to be responsible with their credit use. For example, Discover reported in their latest quarterly earnings announcement that the amount of customers paying off their debts in full each month as opposed to revolving a balance has increased.