TEXT-Fitch: U.S. credit card chargeoffs improve
Link to Fitch Ratings' Report: Credit Card Index: Movers & Shakers - U.S. (Q4 2012)Jan 22 - The quarterly rate of chargeoffs and delinquencies continues to improve for U.S. credit card ABS, according to the latest index results from Fitch Ratings. Quarterly chargeoffs fell to 4.1% in fourth-quarter 2012 (4Q'12), an improvement over the 4.5% seen in 3Q'12. This also represents a 26% decrease from the 4Q'11 average of 5.57%. Another notable development was in the amount of credit card outstandings, which dipped below $100 billion for the first time since December 1995. 'Consumers' resilience at keeping their debt in check while continuing to pay it down is keeping monthly payments steady,' said Managing Director Michael Dean. 'Credit card chargeoffs will plateau in the near term before inching upward during the second half of 2013.' The US Credit Card ABS Index is part of Fitch's series of structured finance index reports. The index reports are updated quarterly and are available at 'www.fitchratings.com' or by clicking on the above link. Additional information is available at www.fitchratings.com.