The auto loans backing rated ABS deals continued to show signs of improvement in July, according to a report from Standard & Poor's.

S&P analysts said losses and delinquency rates in the prime and subprime sectors are still dropping while recovery rates are improving.

They said that aggregate net loss rates last June were roughly 47% less than their December 2010 levels, although they were 5% higher versus May.

S&P reported that the aggregate recovery rate has risen steadily to 66% as of June, increasing 20% from 55% in December 2010. The percentage of loans delinquent for over 60 days is still around 1%, with minor variations from month to month.

These findings are part of the rating agency's just-launched new monthly publication on U.S. auto ABS collateral performance and ratings activity called U.S. Auto Loan ABS Tracker .

"We created the Tracker to provide a monthly snapshot of the U.S. auto loan ABS sector," S&P's credit analyst Mark Risi said. "The report shows recent developments as well as vintage data from Standard & Poor's Auto Loan Static Index."

Risi added that the report will also have trends in the underlying collateral mix in the agency's rated securitizations, a summary of ratings activity for the month, and historical rating transition data.

S&P initiated 69 upgrades, 131 affirmations, and 14 positive CreditWatch placements in June and July, which impacted 54 outstanding deals from five issuers. However, there were no downgrades for that period.

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