U.S. Consumers' Borrowing Slowed in October

Politics Dow Jones Newswires

U.S. consumers racked up debt at the slowest pace in almost a year in October, a sign of cautious spending that could limit the economy's growth in the year's final months.

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Total outstanding consumer credit, reflecting Americans' debt outside of real-estate loans, expanded at a 4.9% seasonally adjusted annual rate to $3.279 trillion in October, the Federal Reserve said Friday. That was the smallest monthly increase since November 2013. Overall debt grew 5.7% in September.

The slower rate reflected sluggish growth in both credit-card debt and in nonrevolving credit such as auto and student loans. Revolving credit, mainly credit-card balances, grew at a 1.3% pace. That was down from September's 1.9% growth.

Nonrevolving credit--largely reflecting borrowing for cars and education--expanded at a 6.2% pace. That was lower than the prior month's 7.1% growth.