Credit card delinquencies decline again

The number of consumers who fell behind on their monthly credit card payments dipped once again in June, marking the fourth month out of the last six in which industry-wide delinquency and charge offs declined.

The number of credit card charge offs observed in the month of June fell to the lowest level since the beginning of 2008, and delinquencies slipped for the 17th straight month, according to the latest industry data from Fitch Ratings. Charge offs – accounts 90 days or more behind that are written off as uncollectable – slipped to 7.29 percent of all balances, 35 percent lower on a year-over-year basis.

Lenders also saw delinquencies – credit card debt that has gone 60 days or more without payment – fall to 2.57 percent of all accounts, a low not seen in nearly four years, and 36 percent lower than the same month last year, the report said.

However, experts caution that a large amount of the declines in charge off and delinquency seen in the last several months are due to previous defaults locking more troubled borrowers out of the credit system.