TransUnion: Late auto-loan payments fall in 2Q

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by Laura Matovina

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A credit reporting agency says it finds that the rate of overdue auto loans are at their lowest rate in more than ten years, as an increasing number of Americans make on-time car payments a priority.

TransUnion says the rate of U.S. auto loan payments at least 60 days overdue fell in the second quarter to 0.33 percent. That's down about 25 percent from the same period last year and 8 percent from the first three months of this year.

All told, the auto loan delinquency rate has fallen on an annual basis for 11 consecutive quarters. Among the factors contributing to the decline: lower interest rates and a strong market for used cars.

The trend, however, also is due to a shift in car owners' mindset since the last recession.

That's when many borrowers made keeping up with their car payments a priority over other types of financial obligations.

Banks are making more auto loans and that's helping drive up average auto debt per borrower.

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