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Credit agencies show slip in mortgage default rate

Mar 28, 2011 Brian Bradley

Fewer consumers defaulted on their mortgages and all other lines of credit during February, according to a new report from Standard & Poor's and Experian. The company's monthly Consumer Credit Default Indices, which offer a glimpse at changes in consumer credit management, revealed that defaults on second mortgages and bank cards fell by roughly 1.46 percent and 5.67 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, auto loan defaults fell by 1.58 percent in February and first mortgage default rates dropped 14 percent to settle at 2.45 percent overall. Craig Feldman, director of the S&P Indices, believes the declining rates exemplify an improving consumer market. "Default rates continue to fall across all major categories and year over year across the five high-lighted cities. The overall trend has lasted a number of months now, reflecting improved consumer health and the appearance of continued economic recovery," said Feldman in a statement. Dallas experienced the largest drop in default rates among major metropolitan areas, slipping almost 14 percent between January and February. Conversely, Chicago saw its rate increase by 2.8 percent.