Christmas could put 10 million people in the red

Published on 1 January 1970 by Raffick Marday

As many as 10 million people could find themselves in the red following Christmas spending this year, as almost half of us fail to save enough for the festive season.

Research has found that 20% of Brits expect to be pushed into debt, or pushed further into debt as a result of Christmas.

It was found that 40% of UK adults are already in debt, excluding mortgage and student loans, meaning their finances will be stretched to begin with.

Of those already in debt, a third say they expect Christmas to push them further into the red, while a fifth say they will use their December salary to pay for Christmas.

Tim Moss is Head of Loans and Debt at MoneySupermarket.com, which carried out the research. He said: “With many people also being paid early in December, January payday may seem a long way off, so planning ahead is vital to avoid carrying over the debt burden into next year.”

"This year has been incredibly tough for consumers with the rising cost of living really hitting the nation’s wallets hard. It comes as no shock that such a high number of people will be tipped into debt this festive season, particularly as Christmas is a time when people generally increase their spending.”

Worryingly, the research also found that one in ten people will be pushed into arrears by the cost of Christmas spending.

Of those going into debt for the first time and those being pushed further into debt, the research found that 69% will be relying on credit cards to help them through Christmas. A further 23% plan to go into their overdraft and 9% will take out a loan.

Mr Moss added: “Brits should ensure they are on the best possible rates across their savings, current accounts, credit cards and loans, so that 2012 can be started with a financial bang, for all the right reasons.”

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