Feb 24 (Reuters) - (The following statement was released by the rating agency)
While metrics continue to break records,signs of a plateau in credit card ABS collateral performance are in sight, Fitch Ratings says. Preliminary results for Fitch's February credit card collateral indices indicate that key metrics are reaching record levels at a slower pace. Fitch's Prime Credit Card Chargeoff Index will drop to another all-time low for the February distribution period. However, our Prime 60+ Day Delinquency Index will remain flat. This indicates that the decline in chargeoffs is likely to be temporary. After reaching an all-time high in last month's reporting period, Fitch's Prime Monthly Payment Rate (MPR) Index will rise again. Our Prime Gross Yield Index will experience a seasonal decline.
Fitch's Retail 60+ Day Delinquency Index will resume rising after last month's decline, while our Retail Chargeoff Index will increase for the fifth straight month. Metrics for Fitch's Retail Gross Yield Index and Fitch's Retail MPR Index remain more favorable. Gross yield is projected to climb toward its all-time high reached two months ago, while MPR is expected to increase to its highest level in a year.
Actual results for Fitch's prime and retail indices will be available in early March.