NEW YORK (10/3/08)--Credit unions and automakers’ captive-finance companies can offer consumers the best chances of receiving an auto loan, The Wall Street Journal said Thursday. Credit unions are in a better financial position than large banks, and will consider other factors outside of a FICO score when lending to members, the newspaper said. Economic troubles have halted credit, meaning that car loans and leases are harder to find because lenders don’t have the money to lend to buyers, it added. Auto lending is down about 64% of auto loan applications were approved as of Sept. 20, compared with 83% during the same period in 2007, according to CNW Marketing Research. Subprime application approvals were at 44%, compared with 67% a year ago. Car loan recipients are required to put more money down--up to 20% of a vehicle’s value. The average down payment on a car was $3,067, up from $2,435--the second time the amount has exceeded $3,000 in four years, the Journal said. To see a video about credit unions and auto loans, use the link.