Millions relying on plastic for day-to-day living

| January 31, 2011 | 0 Comments

According to the fourth annual Post Office Consumer Credit Report, millions used their credit card this month for daily purchases, suggesting the pressure on household finances is growing.

The Government’s spending cuts, together with rising inflation, is having a major impact on families and this is highlighted in the research by the Post Office.

The report said more than 11.5 million people (one third of credit card holders) relied on plastic in January to fund daily purchases.

However, the report highlights that January is a difficult month as many have to stretch their salaries for up to six weeks as many employers pay December salaries early.

This is reflected in the figures after the report found that almost half of credit card holders used their plastic for grocery shopping.

10% of those using their credit card in January said they needed to use their card to see them through the until pay day.

Meanwhile, the report also established that many possess more than one credit card. Around one fifth of men have three or more, while almost a quarter of those living in London possess three or more cards.

However, the report has triggered concern about debt advice organisations. Una Farrell of the Consumer Credit Counselling Service comments: “People in this situation should seek help immediately because using credit cards for day-to-day living costs is one of the strongest signs of financial mismanagement.”

In related news, a recent report from the homeless charity, Shelter, revealed that in the last year, 2.6 million Britons paid their mortgage or rent on their credit card.

The figure represents a rise of 50% on the previous year.

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