An unhealthy interest: debt distress and the consequences of raising rates

Document type
Whittaker, Matthew
Date of publication
1 February 2018
Social Policy, Poverty Alleviation Welfare Benefits and Financial Inclusion
Social welfare
Material type

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This report examines household debt and what happens when rates rise.

Standing at nearly £1.9 trillion, UK household debt remains a big issue. It is one that has very real and very obvious relevance for those families having to meet repayment commitments. But it is one that has macroeconomic implications too: the debt hangover that has endured over the past decade has undoubtedly hampered the UK’s recovery from the financial crisis. It is unsurprising therefore that the recent ‘surge’ in consumer credit growth has provoked some concerns that households are once again storing up problems for the future – especially with interest rate rises expected over the coming years.


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