The number of leases written by a group of auto lenders surveyed on behalf of the Consumer Bankers Association increased 33.5 percent last year to 1.9 million.
Forty-seven banks, captives and independent finance companies answered all or part of the Consumer Bankers Association's 1997 automobile finance study, released June 12. But the big jump in leasing was accounted for by only 19 lenders.
The survey, conducted by the Purdue University Credit Research Center, also showed that the number of loans was essentially flat for the group last year, even though the dollar amount increased slightly.
In tandem with the growth in leasing, lease delinquencies also are on the rise, according to the survey. Lease delinquencies reached 1.51 percent of the total number of accounts outstanding at the end of 1996, up from 1.3 percent in 1995 and 0.96 percent in 1994, the survey said.
Lease delinquency rates were higher for captive finance companies than for banks, the survey noted. Captives reported a delinquency rate of 1.81 percent, compared with 1.38 percent for banks.
'Given their more aggressive leasing policies, we would expect captive finance companies to have higher delinquency rates than large banks,' the survey report said.