SOURCE: Credit Karma

June 17, 2009 06:00 ET

Midwest Region Continues to Show High Percentage of Increasing Credit Scores

Nationwide, Majority of Credit Scores Remain Stable, According to Credit Karma's Unique Trend Data

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - June 17, 2009) - Credit Karma (www.creditkarma.com), the consumer's advocate for demystifying credit, today released its U.S. Credit Score Climate Report with trend data for May 2009. During the February 2009 to May 2009 time period, Credit Karma saw an increase in credit scores across all geographies; however, for the second straight month the percent of credit scores rising has tapered off and a considerable percentage of credit scores are decreasing or staying the same. 39% of consumer credit scores have gone up, 29% have gone down, and 32% remained the same. The current average U.S. consumer credit score is 674.

In addition, Credit Karma has released new data with relation to the average consumers' credit card debt, mortgage, home equity, auto, and student loans. In May, the average consumer had:

--  $7072 in credit card debt
--  $205,365 in home mortgage loans
--  $53,874 in home equity loans
--  $14,564 in auto loans
--  $26,930 in student loans
    

"It is apparent that credit, good credit in particular, is going to become more vital in the reemerging financial systems," said Ken Lin, CEO of Credit Karma. "Consumers have always been out of the loop when it comes to credit. With our new data program, our goal is to help consumers better understand credit and their relative debt by providing benchmarks and milestones against other consumers."

Here are some other key findings:

--  Compared with April, more consumers' credit scores are staying the
    same.  Nationally, 32% of consumers saw their credit score stay the same in
    May, compared to 30% in April.  In addition, 29% saw their credit scores
    decrease in May which is the same percentage as April. In May, 39% of
    consumers saw their credit scores increase.  In April, the increasing
    percentage was 41%.
    
--  For the fourth month in a row, the Midwest region had the highest
    percentage of increasing credit scores.  In May, 40% of consumers in the
    Midwest saw their credit scores increase; 29% of credit scores decreased;
    and 31% of credit scores stayed the same.  In addition, consumers in the
    Midwest also have the lowest amount of debt.  On average Midwest consumers
    have $6700 in credit card debt, $156,300 in home mortgage loans, $13,100 in
    auto loans, and $26,000 in student loans.
    
--  Pennsylvania saw the highest percentage of increasing credit scores
    and the lowest percentage of decreasing credit scores during May.  42% of
    Pennsylvania consumers had their credit score increase; 29% of credit
    scores decreased; and 29% stayed the same.
    

Methodology

Each month, the Credit Karma U.S. Consumer Credit Score Climate Report compares the current credit scores of its 350,000 user base with previous scores pulled at least 30 days prior and no more than 90 days prior to the stated month. This month's report includes a comparison of more than 37,000 Credit Karma user scores.

About Credit Karma

Credit Karma, the consumer's advocate for demystifying credit, is the only Web site that provides consumers free access to their credit score, plus a range of tools and information resources to help them monitor and manage the credit aspect of their financial health. Credit Karma's goal is to help consumers easily digest the contents of their credit report and understand what makes up their credit score. Credit Karma works with a range of partners, including mortgage lenders, credit card providers, banks, and wireless providers. For more information, visit www.creditkarma.com.

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