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Brits 'shying away' from debt

By Lucy Bower

24 October2021

Debt - it's been on everyone's lips over recent years. Recession, worryingly high levels of national debt, worryingly high levels of personal debt - they're national issues and very difficult to ignore at the moment.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the effect this has all had on the nation is that we seem to be 'shying away' from new debts.

According to figures from the British Bankers' Association (BBA), unsecured borrowing dropped by 7.7% in the 12 months to September, as the BBC reports.

The BBA's statistics director, David Dooks, commented: "Households are reducing borrowing requirements and have no appetite to take on more and new debt. Where they can individuals are putting money aside for household expenditure. Firms are holding back on borrowing for investment until trade prospects improve."

According to the figures, the amount we owe as a nation on overdrafts is just over 8.3 billion - which is the lowest cash amount for eight years.

We owe more on outstanding personal loans, which total 35.6 billion at the moment, but this is still the lowest level since the turn of the millennium.

While we did collectively borrow 1.1 billion in September, this level of borrowing is barely a third of what it was before the financial crisis.

However, credit card debts did grow by 4.8% in the 12 months to September. Spending 'on plastic' totalled 7.3 billion in that month - higher than in recent months, reflecting an increase in consumer spending.

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