Consumers are borrowing 49 pence for every pound they save, suggests the data from unbiased.co.uk.
It adds that despite the Â£31.7 billion put away between July and September last year, consumers are “continuing to rely on borrowed money”.
David Elms, chief executive of unbiased.co.uk, commented: “When we reported on the first quarter of 2006 we saw that UK consumers were borrowing only 18 pence for every pound saved, and there was evidence of a net repayment of debt.
“However 2006 has seen consumers borrowing 54p and 49p for every pound saved throughout the second and third quarters respectively.”
He added that although people recognise the importance of saving, they need to budget to avoid the trap of getting into overwhelming debt.
The news comes as reports from Experian suggest that the take-up rate of IVAs in England and Wales has soared in recent months.