Latest figures from the Bank of England show that the stock of personal debt has fallen for the first time since the Bank began recording the figures in 1993 (search for table LPMVTUV in the Bank of England’s Statistical Interactive Database). So why are people on average paying back more than they are borrowing and what will be the implications for the economy? The following articles look at the issues.
Record decline in UK lending threatens recovery Financial Times (1/9/09)
Britons’ mortgage repayments outstrip new loans Times Online (1/9/09)
Personal debt dips for first time BBC News (1/9/09)
Mortgage approvals rise again but repayments outstrip lending Guardian (1/9/09)
Exceptional times BBC, Stephanomics (2/9/09)
Personal debt falls BBC Today Programme (2/9/09)
UK personal debt levels fall (video) BBC News (2/9/09
- What is the effect on aggregate demand of a net repayment of debt by individuals? What other information would you need to have in order to calculate whether aggregate demand is rising or falling?
- Use the Excel data from the Bank of England’s Statistical Interactive Database (linked above in the introduction to this news item) to trace the credit crunch.
- For what reasons have individuals switched from net accumulation of debt to net repayment of debt? Does this suggest that the fall in interest rates over the past 12 months has had a perverse effect?
- What factors have been determining personal saving and borrowing since the start of the credit crunch?
- What are the short-term and long-term implications of a reduction in personal debt?