Survey: 1 in 3 Scots has outstanding credit card debt


The Scottish government has published results from the latest Scottish Household Survey, which gives an insight into the state of families' finances in 2009 to 2010. Included in the report are statistics on households' credit card usage, as well as a more general overview of the nation's financial mood.


Here, looks at how Scots are coping in the face of high inflation and spending cuts.

Scots beginning to feel better about their finances
The Scottish Household Survey began in 1999 and is conducted by Ipsos MORI and TNS-BMRB. According to the Scottish government, the latest report suggests that people were "beginning to feel more positively about their household finances" throughout 2010. When asked about their ability to cope, just 1% of respondents said they were in deep financial trouble.

The proportion of households who felt they were managing 'well' or 'quite well' remained stable throughout 2009 and 2010, as did the percentage with some financial problems.Unsurprisingly, households with a total income of less than £10,000 were much more likely to say they were managing badly (22%) than those with an income in excess of £30,000 (4%).

In addition, age appears to be an important factor, with just 36% of 16 to 24-year-olds saying they were managing well, compared with 61% of over-75s. Similarly, one-fifth of 16 to 24-year-olds said they were not managing well, compared with just 2% of over-75s.

One in three has outstanding credit card debts
At the time of the 2009 to 2010 survey, one-third of households said they owed money on credit cards from the previous month. Nearly half (45%) of households with an income exceeding £30,000 had outstanding credit card debts, along with 35% of those earning between £20,001 and £30,000, 24% of those with an income of £10,001 to £20,000 and 17% of those earning £10,000 or less.

Households with an income in excess of £30,000 were also least likely to have no outstanding credit card debts (50%), while those earning £10,000 or less were most likely to owe nothing on credit or store cards (78%). This may reflect the fact that high-earners are more likely to be offered unsecured credit, while those with a low household income are often viewed as too great a risk by potential lenders, say experts.

See related: Number of cash-strapped Brits at all-time high; Brits' savings efforts hampered by unsecured debt

Published: 22 August 2011