In a sign that many Americans are feeling more comfortable about the condition of the economy, U.S. household debt has risen by $78 billion in the last quarter. The data comes from a survey by the Federal Reserve Bank.
The primary drivers of the increase in debt were student loans, auto loans and credit card balanced. The previous quarter was also driven by those three forms of debt. Household debt still hasn’t reached the highs prior to the global financial crisis, when it was 7.6% higher than it is now.
Economists suggest that the increase in debt means the deleveraging period has come to an end. Households have enough confidence in their financial situation that they are willing to borrow more.
Delinquencies were still a concern with 11 percent of students 90 days or more delinquent in paying their debt. Still, it’s a positive sign for the United States economy.