TransUnion: Millennials climbing into driver's seat with loans

February 27, 2015

CHICAGO (3/2/15)--Millennials are the fastest-growing segment of auto-loan consumers, according to a recent report from TransUnion.

Consumers born in 1981 or later made up 27% of total auto-loan originations last year, a 16% increase from 2009.

Further, total outstanding auto-loan balances for millennials jumped 23% on an annual basis, the largest increase of any demographic.

"The growth in millennials' auto-loan originations dispels the common myth that millennials are not buying cars," said Jason Laky, TransUnion senior vice president/automotive business leader. "The growing average loan balances for millennials, combined with stable delinquency rates, indicate that we are still in the midst of a strong auto-lending environment."

The average opening loan balance for millennials climbed 4.1% over 2014 to $18,678 from $17,942, the report found.

Separately, the report found that auto-loan delinquencies climbed in 27 states last year, with Arkansas and Nebraska posting the biggest jumps at 15.7% and 10.5% respectively.

The largest declines occurred in Oklahoma, with an 18.6% drop, and in Alaska, with a 16.1% drop.

Per borrower, the average auto-loan debt rose 4.1% in 2014 to $17,453 from $16,771.

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