Citizens Advice calls on FCA to curb the rise in consumer debt

By agency reporter
November 1, 2017

The latest Bank of England consumer credit statistics show that consumer borrowing has risen by 9.9 per cent in the year to September 2017 and now totals £204 billion.

With speculation rising about the Bank of England increasing interest rates, Citizens Advice is urging the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to take action now to help people who are already struggling to repay their debts.

Earlier this month, the FCA revealed that half the population are financially vulnerable and 8 million are already over-indebted. The charity is now calling for the regulator to step in to curb the growth in consumer debt.

Gillian Guy, Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said: “The rise and rise of consumer debt is a cause for alarm at a time when large numbers of people are already in financial difficulty.

“The FCA must step in to curb the worrying rise in debt – by banning credit card firms from pushing more credit onto people who haven’t asked for it, and compelling them to offer support sooner when it’s clear people can’t pay.

“The FCA’s own research shows that 8 million people are already struggling with debt  – leaving them vulnerable to falling into a debt spiral should interest rates rise or a life change sets them back on their repayments.

“It’s essential that the regulator and credit card companies act together to prevent people getting stuck with ever-growing debts that they can’t afford to repay.”

* Citizens Advice https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/

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