Problem credit card debt in decline
We are seeing a marked decline in problem credit card debt. The number of people seeking our help with their credit card debt is decreasing, going down from the peak of 170,363 in 2009 to 161,451 in 2010, and 149,475 in 2011.
While 76,368 people have sought our help with their credit card debt in the first half of 2012, this is a decline of 80,971 for the first half of 2011, and 85,315 for the first half of 2010.
However, the level at which credit card debt becomes problematic has dropped, with the average credit card debt for those seeking the charity’s help going down by almost three thousand pounds, from £13,196 in 2009 to £10,517 in 2012.
The average number of credit cards for our clients has also gone down, from 3.3 in 2007 to 2.8 in 2012.
We believe that while problem credit card debt is on the decline, which may be the result of people paying down their debt, less access to this type of credit or a combination of both. Whatever the reason, while fewer people are struggling with credit card debt, lower levels of credit card debt are becoming problematic.
This highlights the impact of the economic downturn on household budgets, how people are struggling to keep up with their debt repayments despite having less credit card debt to manage.