Debt consolidation grows as Christmas costs cripple consumers

04 January 2007
Britons could take out debt consolidation loans to the tune of £4.8 billion between January and March 2007, Sainsbury's Bank has warned.

January is traditionally a peak month for taking out personal loans to consolidate debt, and this year is unlikely to be an exception, with only 52 per cent of people telling Sainsbury's Bank they expected to clear their Christmas spending by the end of January.

As many as eight per cent of people expect the costs incurred over Christmas to keep hanging over them for at least 12 months.

Consumer group Credit Action yesterday revealed Britons are suffering record debt levels with almost ten per cent of the population showing signs of financial stress.

At the end of 2006, one person was falling victim to insolvency every minute of the working day, a 66 per cent increase on the same quarter in 2005, according to Nick White of

Total UK debt stands at £1,268 billion for 2006 – 217 per cent higher than 13 years ago.

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