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Americans in Debt: Part II

A report released this week by the Federal Reserve shows that more consumers are getting access to credit cards backed by major banks: more than 171 million consumers have access to these cards, up from 162.5 million who had access in 2005.

Lenders are giving more consumers with sub-prime credit scores access to credit cards but with lower spending limits.

More consumers have taken on auto and student loans, which make it harder for younger consumers to buy homes.  Debt delinquencies of 90 days or more have mostly improved since 2008, but about 10 percent of student loans have balances that are 90 days or more delinquent.

Housing debt is down close to $1 trillion, but auto loan balances are $367 billion higher, and student loans are $671 billion higher.  Mortgages remain the bulk of the debt total at 67% as of 2016.