Credit card debt consolidation continues

The recent trend for consumers to seek to keep their credit card debt down by paying off more than they spend has continued, according to new data.

The recent trend for consumers to seek to keep their credit card debt down by paying off more than they spend has continued, according to new data.

British Bankers Association figures for November have indicated that in the month, consumers spent £6.8 billion on plastic, but paid back £7 billion.

This follows on from similar figures in October, when £7.1 billion of new spending was counteracted by £7.3 billion repayments and September, when transactions totalled £6.9 billion but £7.2 billion was paid off.

However, despite this the overall net level of credit card borrowing was £0.1 billion higher – a figure that can be attributed to the interest being charged on existing balances.

There were 117 million purchases during the month, up from 116.6 million in October and 114.4 million in September, a trend that may be connected with increased shopping with Christmas approaching.

People who are struggling to get their credit card debt under control may find a debt management plan will help them get back on track after Christmas.

By spreading payments out, it can be easier to afford to meet payments and prevent balances from rising rapidly out of control.

Head of credit cards at Moneysupermarket.com Hannah Skenfield recently said that the new year will be a time when many credit card holders will focus strongly on trying to reduce their debts.

She said many will look to do this by switching to a card with a cheaper rate.

Those who may need alternative measures to bring their arrears under control could include people who are behind with card payments and therefore have a low credit rating that may make obtaining a new card difficult.

By Joe White

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