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Student loans fuel $12.3 billion rise in consumer borrowing

Wednesday, 8 Jan 2014 | 3:14 PM ET
A man uses a credit card to pay for gas in Miami, Florida.
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A man uses a credit card to pay for gas in Miami, Florida.

Americans increased their borrowing in November, led by continued gains in auto and student loans.

The Federal Reserve says consumers increased their borrowing by $12.3 billion in November to a seasonally adjusted $3.09 trillion. That is a record level and follows an October increase of $17.9 billion.

(Click here to track the U.S. stock market following the report.)

Almost all of the November increase came from an $11.9 billion rise in borrowing for auto loans and student loans.

Borrowing in the category that covers credit cards ticked up only $457.8 million after surging in October.

Credit card borrowing plunged after the Great Recession and consumers remain cautious about taking on high-interest debt. It has gradually increased to its highest level in more than three years, but it's still 16 percent below its peak of more than $1 trillion reached in 2008.

—By The Associated Press

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