Credit card lending in ‘unexpected jump’

The scale of credit card lending took what experts have described as an unexpected jump during February of this year, it has emerged.

Credit card debt held by consumers around the country was worth almost £400 million more at the end of February than at the beginning and the increase was higher than had been the norm over the previous six-month period.

Meanwhile, the overall value of loans handed out for purposes other than property purchase rose by close to £2 billion in February, which marked a significant increase on January.

Reflecting on the figures from the Bank of England, Tracey North of uSwitch.com said that consumers around the country must be using all the credit they can while it is still available.

“February’s jump in consumer borrowing is very surprising,” Howard Archer, chief UK and Europe economist at Global Insight, told the London Evening Standard.

He attributed the findings to: “People looking to borrow while they can amid fears that tightening credit conditions will make this increasingly difficult over the coming months.”

A report from MoneyExpert recently suggested that the tightening of lending criteria in the UK is likely to make it more difficult for consumers to become debt free via a consolidation loan.

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