Surprising results do not help the annual survey
Credit bureau has published its credit compass for the year 2009. Really surprising results do not help the annual survey. The federal citizens took out more loans in the past year than in 2008. In principle, however, the behavior in financial matters has not changed, even during the crisis.
The number of loan agreements
As Credit bureau reports, the number of loan agreements rose by 10 percent last year. Thus, borrowing was not only resistant to the crisis – it even benefited from it. While there is usually less demand for loans in times of crisis, this time state measures such as the scrapping premium and retail offers stimulated business with consumer credit.
According to the study, the relatively stable situation on the labor market has also had a favorable effect. Unemployment has risen far less than expected by economists at the beginning of the crisis.
Consumers threatened by over-indebtedness
Credit bureau does not see German consumers threatened by over-indebtedness as a collective. The average debt per capita even fell by 126 usd last year to 8382 usd. The agency also said that 97 out of 100 installment loans would be repaid. In the past year, therefore, more debts were repaid than newly added.
The credit compass also provides information on how problems with over-indebtedness are distributed regionally across the republic. As in previous years, there is a clear north-south divide. The people of Bavaria have the least problems with debt. In northern Germany, and especially in the new federal states, the Credit bureau registered a much larger proportion of households that had to struggle with financial difficulties. The debt problems in Berlin weigh most heavily.
Skeptical about loans
Overall, the federal citizens are still skeptical about loans and only use them in exceptional cases. According to Credit bureau, loans are most often taken by consumers between the ages of 30 and 44 years. This will be used to finance real estate, cars, but also furniture and power tools.
Credit bureau expects a decline in the number of new installment credits for 2010. The pull-forward effects of last year are of greater importance than the crisis. However, the number of over-indebted households should increase slightly.