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Consumer credit posts smallest increase in eight months

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. consumer credit recorded its smallest increase in eight months in March as Americans cut back on credit cards to fund purchases, Federal Reserve data showed on Tuesday.

Total consumer installment credit rose by $7.97 billion to $2.81 trillion. That was the smallest increase since July. Economists polled by Reuters had expected consumer credit to rise a solid $16.00 billion in March.

Revolving credit, which mostly measures credit-card use, fell $1.71 billion after rising $453 million in February.

Nonrevolving credit, which includes auto loans as well as student loans made by the government, rose $9.68 billion in March. That followed an $18.18 billion increase in February.

(Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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