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Average UK household debt bucks downward trend

UK HOUSEHOLD BORROWING rose three times in 2012, bucking an otherwise downward trend of the last three years. The findings come from debt statistics released today by money charity Credit Action.

Average household debt, which includes credit card borrowing but not mortgages, grew from £5,914 in November to £5,946 in December. Unsecured borrowing has been falling month-on-month since January 2010 with the exception of March, September and December 2012. This is the first time in three years that there has been a rise in unsecured borrowing in December.

Credit Action CEO Michelle Highman commented: "If you can't avoid borrowing, shop around to get credit on the best terms you can – find out upfront about any fees, interest rates and minimum repayments. If you're still paying off money you borrowed in 2012, plan how you're going to manage your debt this year. That might include talking to a debt adviser or shifting a credit card balance to one with a lower interest rate. There's lots more help in our free guide, available from www.creditaction.org.uk/moneymanual."