On-board hydrogen generation technology using a fuel reforming catalyst is an effective way to improve the fuel efficiency of automotive internal combustion engines. The main issue to be addressed in developing such a catalyst is to suppress catalyst deterioration caused by carbon deposition on the catalyst surface due to sulfur adsorption. Enhancing the hydrocarbon and water activation capabilities of the catalyst is important in improving catalyst durability. It was found that the use of a rare earth element is effective in improving the water activation capability of the catalyst. Controlling the hydrocarbon activation capability of the catalyst for a good balance with water activation was also found to be effective in improving catalyst durability.