TransUnion: Credit risk on the rise

With more Americans struggling with debt problems and their credit score, a new report shows that credit risk is on the rise.

TransUnion reported recently that the Credit Risk Index increased 1.98 percent from the last quarter of 2008 to the first quarter of 2009. The index rose from 124.79 to 127.26 during that time.

Chet Wiermanski, global chief scientist at TransUnion, said there was a positive side to the credit risk data in that the rise in the consumer credit risk has decelerated.

“However, the index remains at an all-time historical high, indicating that delinquencies and foreclosures will continue to rise in the coming months,” Wiermanski said.

TransUnion defines the credit risk as the average probability of delinquencies of 90 days or more in a certain region as compared to the rest of the nation. A score about 100 indicates a high level of risk.

The state with the highest risk on the index was Mississippi with a score of 166.45. The states with lower risk include North Dakota, with a score of 82.02, and Minnesota, coming in at 88.53.

With credit risk on the rise, Americans are also facing more delinquent credit card debt. A recent report from the American Bankers Association states that 6.6 percent of all credit card debt is accounted for by delinquent balances.