Borrowing on the rise

Rae Bryden, manager at Joules in Gunwharf Quays, who was the Manager of the Year winner and was runner-up in the Fashion Store of the Year category at The News's Retail and Leisure Awards in 2016.  Picture: Sarah Standing (170883-5016)

Shortlist revealed for The News Retail and Leisure Awards 2017

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THE amount of consumer credit taken on by Britons increased for the first time since August during January, despite confidence remaining weak.

The UK borrowed a total of £3.75bn from members of the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) during the month, five per cent more than during January last year.

The increase was driven by a 27 per cent year-on-year jump in new unsecured loans, with borrowing in this area totalling £209m.

January is often a busy month for the personal loan market, as people look to consolidate credit card debt they ran up during the previous year to reduce their monthly outgoings.

There was also a 16 per cent rise in car finance to £812m, while credit card borrowing jumped by three per cent to £2.36bn.

Despite these increases, consumer confidence appeared to remain low.