Auto loan debt edged up in the third quarter, driven by record-high loan originations, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York's quarterly report on household debt.
Total household debt grew $87 billion in the third quarter to $14.35 trillion, the highest figure recorded for household debt this year, the Fed said last week.
Auto loan debt increased by $17 billion from the second quarter, thanks largely to the highest auto originations recorded for the 16-year-old report.
Auto originations of $168.2 billion, a 5.7 percent increase from the same time last year, is a large improvement over last quarter, the Fed said, which saw more extreme impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. Auto originations declined 13 percent in second-quarter 2020 to $135.9 billion.
Total auto debt reached $1.36 trillion in the third quarter, up $45 billion from last year.
The latest report also showed delinquency rates dropped across all credit products, further reflecting the ongoing effect of forbearance offerings that have shielded borrowers' credit files from being marked delinquent from missed payment during the pandemic period.
As of Sept. 30, just 3.4 percent of outstanding consumer debt was in "some stage" of delinquency, the New York Fed said.