December 28, 2017

CFPB releases credit card market report

The CFPB last week released its biennial report on the state of the credit card market. This year's report found stability in cost and availability of credit cards, as well as increased innovation with rewards programs and digital account services.

The report looked at many of the baseline indicators established in the 2015 report to track market developments and trends. It also includes two new deep dives: one into credit card products marketed to and used by consumers who lack prime credit scores, and one into third-party comparison websites impact on the credit card market.

Other key findings of the report include:

  • delinquency and charge-off rates have increased over the last year after falling to historical lows in the years following the Great Recession;
  • average credit card debt increased 9 percent over the last two years and total outstanding credit card debt has reached pre-recession levels;
  • issuers have lowered their daily limits on debt collection phone calls for delinquent credit card accounts; and
  • consumers are more likely to engage with financial products through computers and mobile devices – more than 60 percent of active credit card accounts are enrolled in online services.

The report is required by the Credit Card Accountability and Responsibility Disclosure (CARD) Act and was first the responsibility of the Federal Reserve System's Board of Governors but transferred to the CFPB with the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act. It is published every two years.

NAFCU has previously shared with the CFPB that the 2009 CARD Act has added significantly to credit unions' compliance costs.