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FICO rolls out new credit scoring model

Consumers are getting turned down for all sorts of financial products, from personal and auto loans to credit cards. The Wall Street Journal, using Equifax data, reports that credit card approvals totaled 483,000 in the week ending May 10, down from 856,000 in the week ending March 22. To compare to the year prior, weekly card approvals in 2019 “rarely fell below 1.2 million,” according to The Wall Street Journal.

But as banks are tightening their lending requirements, a new tool is trying to prevent lenders from cutting off consumers’ access to credit.

Fair Isaac Corp., the data analytics company behind the FICO credit score, has just launched the FICO Resilience Index, a new scoring model designed to help lenders better assess consumers’ sensitivity to financial stress by looking at their capacity to survive financially though a downturn.

“The FICO Resilience Index, used in conjunction with a FICO Score, allows card issuers to limit access less than they otherwise would have because they can now identify borrowers who are more resilient to the economic downturn,” Sally Taylor, VP of FICO Scores, tells CNBC Select.

FICO defines resilient borrowers as “consumers that are more likely to pay as agreed in the event of a recession.”

The new scoring model ranks consumers’ resiliency on a scale of 1 to 99. The higher your score, the higher the risk you will default on your payments; the lower your score, the more likely you are to make on-time payments even when the economy experiences a downturn.

Read the full piece here.

This piece was originally published on CNBC by Elizabeth Gravier on June 29, 2020.

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