Consumers boost borrowing $16 billion in October

Consumers increased their borrowing in October at the slowest pace in four months as growth in credit card debt and the category that covers auto loans and student loans slowed.

The Federal Reserve says total borrowing rose $16 billion after a $21.8 billion increase in September. The October increase was the smallest since a gain of $14.5 billion in June.

Revolving credit, which covers credit cards, increased $2.3 billion in October. That was after a $4.1 billion increase in September and was the smallest gain since February. The non-revolving category, which covers auto loans and student loans, rose $13.7 billion in October after a $17.7 billion rise in September.

Economists watch borrowing trends to gauge how consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of economic activity, will fare.