Americans Continue To Pay Off Credit Debt In January
This week, Capital One Financial reported it conducted fewer write offs on consumer credit card accounts and received fewer late payments from customers in January.
The company saw its charge off rate - the percentage of accounts written off due to non-payment - fall to 6.79 percent, dropping from the 7.01 percent seen in December.
Capital One's U.S. credit card business also saw big improvements, as 30-day delinquencies - late payments on account balances - dropped to 4 percent, down from the 4.09 percent observed the previous month.
There were also signs consumers were becoming more responsible with their car payments. The charges off rate on the company's auto loans declined to 2.62 percent from 2.67 percent in December. Delinquencies on these payments also fell during this time.
Overall, the company reported an 85 percent year-over-year earnings increase, due in part to shrinking loan-loss provisions and an upswing in consumer spending. Nearly every major credit card lender saw increased profits in the fourth quarter, as Americans spent more than was expected during the holiday season.