Washington Credit-card borrowing and other kinds of consumer debt declined for the first time in 10 months in September, reflecting in large part sagging auto sales.
The Federal Reserve reported that total borrowing fell at an annual rate of $59.4 million in September after having posted sizable increases of $7.91 billion in August, $9.96 billion in July and $15.04 billion in June.
The three months before September had been driven by huge gains in auto loans as consumers responded to incentives.
The weakness in September came from a 2.8 percent drop at an annual rate in non-revolving loans, the category that includes auto loans. This category had shown a 4.6 percent increase in August and an even larger 9.3 percent surge in July.
The category of credit cards and other types of revolving debt showed a 4.7 rate of increase in September, the biggest gain in three months. Analysts said this increase reflected in part heavier use of credit cards to pay for gasoline.