Thursday, February 19, 2009

Anlaysis of US Consumer Credit Growth - Thank Paul Swartz

Here’s another essay from Paul Swartz at Brad Setser’s blog analyzing recent changes in US consumer credit from the Fed’s g19 release.
Following is my comment on the Q4 2008 consumer credit levels:
In the g19 release, it’s clear that absolute total consumer credit o/s. contracted from $2585.3 billion in October 2008 to $ 2582.6 billion in November 2008. Then, in December 2008, it increased to $ 2596.0 billion. So I think Paul’s interpretation that consumer credit grew after the TARP I funds sank in, albeit slowly, is correct.The summary at the top of the Fed’s g19 release probably deals with decreases at ‘annual rate’; which might be some statistical measure other than the absolute o/s numbers in Q4 ‘08.
Personal Consumption Expenditure levels in the United States between 2004 and 2008, according to the National Income and Product Tables from BEA:
2005 $8,893.70
2006 $9,357.00
2007 $9,892.70
2008 $9,930.20
The total PCE 2005-2008 was $38,073.60 billion.
From the Fed’s g19 release linked above, total consumer credit outstanding grew from $2191.60 billion at the end of 2004 to $2562.30 at the end of 2008, an increase of $ 370.70 billion. Increases in consumer credit funded only 0.97% of total US PCE between 2005 and 2008.
Here's a link to the Fed’s Flow of Funds release for reference to the general credit growth data for all sectors.

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