June 13, 2012 08:00 ET

Student Loan Debt Falls From a Year Ago, According to

Credit Card Debt Remains Steady

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - Jun 13, 2012) -, the consumer's credit advocate, today released its U.S. Credit Score Climate Report with trend data for May 2012. Nationally, credit card debt decreased slightly in May, down .2% to $5,637 from April 2012. Student loan debt is also down, falling 2% year-over-year to $29,088, with residents in Nevada ($26,456) and New Mexico ($25,332) boasting biggest decreases at 12% and 11% respectively.

"The Obama administration is currently trying to make it easier on consumers to manage student debt, capping repayments for federal Stafford loans at 10 instead of 15 percent of disposable income for those making on time payments," said Ken Lin, CEO of "While this can help consumers manage debt, this means that the average student loan debt will likely increase as students take more time to pay back loans."

Credit scores fell 3 points nationwide from the previous month to 656. In May 2012, the average consumer with an account had $167,485 in home mortgage debt and $46,499 in home equity debt.

Other key findings include:

  • Auto loan debt saw the biggest percentage increase on a monthly and yearly basis, increasing by 1% and 3.1% respectively to $15,691. From a year ago, Wyoming ($19,847) and Rhode Island ($13,533) added to their auto debt the most at 7%.

  • Delaware was the only state to increase its credit score from last month -- up one point to 649. Alaska (658) and South Dakota (657) saw their credit scores drop the most at five points, followed by Iowa (658), Kansas (651), New Mexico (648), Mississippi (621), Texas (645) and Wyoming (646) at four points.

  • Since April, Rhode Island (5%), Arizona (3%) and Alabama (3%) paid down their credit card debt the most while North Dakota (3%), New Hampshire (3%) and New Mexico (4%) added the most debt.

Each month, the U.S. Consumer Credit Score Climate Report compares the current credit scores of its 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 571,142 user scores.

About provides more than 6 million consumers with free credit scores and access to free credit monitoring to help them realize the everyday cost savings of having good credit by offering personalized savings recommendations for credit cards, student, auto, mortgage and home equity loans. It also provides financial education and access to free tools that empower consumers to take charge of their financial health including the Credit Report Card, Credit Score Simulator and Credit Card Statistics. To learn more, visit

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