The Daily Caller

The Daily Caller
              In this Friday, Nov. 23, 2012, photo, a cashier rings up a cash sale at a Sears store, in Las Vegas. U.S. consumers borrowed more in November to buy cars and attend school, but stayed cautious with their credit cards. The Federal Reserve said Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013, that consumers increased their borrowing in November by $16 billion from October to a seasonally adjusted record of $2.77 trillion. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
              In this Friday, Nov. 23, 2012, photo, a cashier rings up a cash sale at a Sears store, in Las Vegas. U.S. consumers borrowed more in November to buy cars and attend school, but stayed cautious with their credit cards. The Federal Reserve said Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013, that consumers increased their borrowing in November by $16 billion from October to a seasonally adjusted record of $2.77 trillion. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)   

Consumer debt rises by more than $16 billion in November, driven by student, auto loans

Consumer debt rose more than $16 billion during the month of November, a 7 percent increase from October that was driven largely by auto and student loans, the Federal Reserve announced Tuesday afternoon.

Only 5 percent of the credit increase was from revolving credit, which includes credit cards. In addition, consumers used their credit cards more sparingly through the month of November, a possible sign of fear among consumers.

The expansion in student loans is particularly worrisome to economists. Last quarter, the default rate on student loans climbed to a record-high 11 percent, reaching nearly a $1 trillion — 85 percent of which is held by the government. (RELATED: Student loan delinquency hits all-time high

Gallup’s U.S. Economic Confidence Index showed U.S. consumer confidence still down following the fiscal cliff deal. Only 16 percent of Americans say the economy is doing “excellent” or “good,” and 57 percent of Americans say that the economy is getting worse.

“As lawmakers in Washington strained to finalize a deal to avert the fiscal cliff, Americans became less confident in the economy,” Gallup writes.”[L]ingering concerns could keep confidence from improving much, as happened in September and October 2011, after the debt ceiling debate.”

Follow Betsi on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.