NEW YORK – After a stint of frugality, Americans have returned to their borrowing ways. But are they getting into the kinds of trouble that lead to recessions?
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The stress points are in auto loans, credit cards and student loans.
Student loans have become a greater proportion of the debt Americans owe. People are also borrowing more money to buy cars and are financing them for longer periods of time. Credit card debt has risen from $659 billion in 2014 to $746 billion last year, according to data from the New York Federal Reserve.
Economists generally say people's willingness to borrow is a good thing, because it shows confidence in their futures. And while the debt may cause individual problems, it's not as widespread as the housing market travails a decade ago.