WASHINGTON - After a long period of consumer retrenchment, U.S. families have cut their once-out-of-control debt loads down to pre-recession levels, largely removing one major obstacle to a faster economic recovery.
The amount of home mortgages, credit card debt and most other consumer liabilities now stands on par with 2006 or earlier, according to calculations by Moody's Analytics. The notable exception is student loans, which have skyrocketed in recent years, with people flooding into schools and college costs soaring.
Overall, households today are paying less than 16% of after-tax income to cover debt payments and lease obligations, the smallest share since 1984, Federal Reserve data show.
Via Lynda Park