The New York Fed’s Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) is a monthly survey asking American consumers about their experiences and views of the economy, including indicators like expected inflation and expected increases in household spending.
Every four months, the SCE includes supplemental questions about Americans’ experiences with applying for and receiving credit. In October, about 33.4% of survey respondents applied and were approved for some form of credit, about 8.3% applied but were rejected, and about 8.6% needed credit but were too discouraged to even apply. All of those percentages have remained fairly stable in the two years the New York Fed has been running the SCE:
The survey also broke out the types of credit Americans have been applying for. Credit card applications have remained fairly stable since 2013, with between 25% and 30% of Americans applying for a card in the year prior to each survey release. Mortgages and auto loans have also been pretty stable: Between 5% and 8% of Americans have applied for mortgages and home-based loans in each of the survey releases, and around 15% have applied for auto loans.
Morgage refinances have been somewhat swingier. Nearly a quarter of survey respondents reported applying for a mortgage refinance in the year before the initial October 2013 survey. That proportion plummeted and hit a February 2015 low of 6.6% before rebounding to 11.8% in the current release.
Americans have also become more likely to apply for increases in their credit card limits, with the proportion of respondents applying for increases increasing from 10.4% in October 2013 to 14.9% in October 2015:
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