Huntington Bancshares Inc. increased its prime rate in response to the recent Federal Reserve hike.
Huntington now charges 4 percent on prime loans, up from 3.75 percent.
Huntington’s prime rate was last changed on Dec. 15, when the bank increased it from 3.50 percent.
The new Synchrony Car Care credit card allows motorists to pay for comprehensive auto care at thousands of service and parts locations, as well as fuel at gas stations.
The new card replaces the CarCareONE card, leveraging the existing network that has helped millions of consumers finance automotive aftermarket parts and services for more than three decades. The new program enhances benefits, while building on the same core value proposition of special financing for purchases of $199 or more.
The new card is issued and serviced by Synchrony Bank.
As part of the launch, Synchrony has worked with Discover Global Network to provide greater acceptance within the fuel segment. In addition to acceptance at thousands of merchants in the Synchrony Car Care network, the new card can be used for purchases at gas stations nationwide and everywhere Discover is accepted.
Eighty million consumers had an auto lease or loan as of year-end 2016.
This marks the highest level TransUnion has observed since at least the third quarter of 2009, as approximately 4.3 million additional consumers took out an auto lease or loan in 2016.
Total auto finance balances continued to grow at the end of 2016, closing the year at $1.11 trillion. The total balance grew 8.3 percent during 2016, slower than the average growth rate of 11.0 percent between 2013 and 2015.
The average auto balance per consumer also rose slightly to $18,391, up from $18,004 in the fourth quarter of 2015.
The average finance amount for new and used vehicle reached a record high in the fourth quarter of 2016.
The average amount financed for new vehicles reached $30,621. The average amount financed for a used vehicle reached $19,329, up from $18,850 in the fourth quarter of 2015.
The report also showed the number of consumers opting for auto finance contracts with terms of 73 to 84 months on their new vehicles increased to 32.1 percent from 29 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015. In the used car market, there was an increase in 73- to 84-month loans to 18.2 percent from 16.4 percent.
The report also showed that used vehicle financing grew to 41.85 percent in the super prime consumer segment, an increase of 5.4 percent year over year. Moreover, used franchise and independent vehicle dealers saw their biggest year over year increases in super prime consumer lending, with 5.91 percent and 13.8 percent, respectively.