In response to pressure from regulators and the banking industry, credit reporting firms will offer modified credit scores starting in 2019. The modifications include the calculation of utility and cellphone bills that millions of Americans pay every month.
Banks have argued that a large group of consumers nationwide just don’t have sufficient credit history to generate a viable credit score for a bank loan. However, the inclusion of utility and cellphone payments will help identify credit worthy consumers for bank loans.
The challenge lies with consumers that hold little if any loan balances, thus not generating a track record of payments. The modification is expected to increase loan issuance by banks as millions of consumers become qualified for loans. An overall drop in credit scores following the financial crisis of 2008-2009 made it difficult for consumers to obtain loans.
With over 270 million cell phone users in the country, many are expected to benefit from so-called non-loan bill payments as their credit scores may positively be affected.
Sources: Fair Issac Corp., Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Treasury Dept.