Thanks to a turnaround in the housing market and an increase in jobs statewide, Georgia credit union members are feeling more confident about buying new and used vehicles.
According to data from the Georgia Credit Union Affiliates, new auto loans at Georgia credit unions increased 6.8% and used auto loans rose 5.5% in the first half of 2013.
The continued growth in auto lending is being fueled by Georgia’s improving economy, the GCUA said, citing data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Federal Housing Finance Agency purchase-only index.
Georgia recently added 40,000 new jobs and experienced a 4% rise in average home prices.
As the state’s job and housing prices continue to lift consumer confidence and return to pre-recession levels, GCUA President/CEO Mike Mercer said the league expects lending at Georgia credit unions to mirror that trend.
Meanwhile, even though automobile financing has been the frontrunner in consumer spending, the GCUA said overall lending is also on a continued upswing. Total loan balances were up 2.9% and second mortgage loans increased by 4.4%.
To track the latest figures, the GCUA said it compiled savings and lending data from June 2012 to June 2013 at 43 credit unions statewide, representing 94% of credit union assets and 88% of members in Georgia.