Santander: 4.5m balance transfer credit cards taken out in New Year

Santander: 4.5m balance transfer credit cards taken out in New Year

04 January 2010 / by Rachael Stiles

Four and a half million balance transfer credit cards will be taken out in the New Year following the big Christmas spend, according to Santander.

Brits will move £3.2billion onto new balance transfer credit cards in the first three months of 2010, the research predicts, as they take advantage of interest free periods and other special offers.

The total amount of debt being transferred from one credit card to another has fallen by more than half compared to the same time last year, Santander's research found, with an average sum of £1,140 being moved to a new card.

In 2009, Brits transferred more than £7billion, an average sum of £2,290 each, but the new statistics suggest a growing sense of financial awareness amongst British consumers.

Brits have paid off record levels of unsecured debt in the last 12 months, and the switching their balance to get a better deal has risen by a third.

Commenting on the research, Emma Roberts, director of Santander credit cards, said that the rise in those transferring their balance in search of the best deal, coupled with a decline in the amount of money being transferred, "is a clear sign that consumers are becoming savvier when it comes to managing their finances."

"It's encouraging that so many Britons are planning to take control of their finances in the New Year by transferring an outstanding credit card balance to a 0 per cent deal," she added.

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