Almost half of the UK public don’t know what recession really means

However, 55pc of people to take more notice of Wednesday's pre-budget announcement as economy struggles

Independent research commissioned by credit reference agency Callcredit has revealed that 44pc of the UK adult population do not know what a recession is, with 57pc of women unable to define the term.

Key statistics

• 55pc are more likely to pay attention to the pre-Budget announcement than in previous years due to the recession
• 57pc of UK women do not know the official definition of a recession, compared to just 31pc of men
• 58pc of the UK adult population are more concerned about their financial situation now than they were before the Bank of England officially confirmed the recession

According to last week's quarterly inflation report from the Bank of England, the UK probably entered a recession in the middle of 2008 and is likely to continue to contract well into 2009. Consumers up and down the country are therefore tightening their purse strings and paying more attention to the economic landscape.

58pc say they are more concerned about their own financial situation now than they were before the Bank of England confirmed the UK is in a recession, with the over 55s expressing the greatest of concern (67pc are worried).

It's the over 55s who are also more likely to pay attention to this week's pre-Budget announcement than in previous years (63pc), compared to just 41pc of 18-24 year olds.

Owen Roberts, Head of Callcredit Check, comments "The current economic climate is a worry for everyone so awareness and a healthy understanding of the situation are important. Not surprisingly, people are more concerned about their financial situation now than they were before the UK fell into recession, but it should not just be the over 55s who are paying attention.

"Consumers of all ages should take their finances seriously and build a strong understanding of their current situation. Checking a copy of your credit report is an excellent first step to getting an overview of your financial commitments and we have been encouraged to see a 50% increase in subscriptions to our own online credit report. Any individual who is struggling with debt repayments should speak with their lenders before things become unmanageable or contact an independent organisation such as the Consumer Credit Counselling Service to work out the best way forward."


Research information
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 2037 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 14th - 17th November 2008. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

About Callcredit

• Callcredit (www.callcredit.co.uk) is the UK's most innovative, state-of-the art credit reference agency, with an extensive range of information and value added services for businesses and individuals.
• Callcredit Check provides consumers with online access to the details of their credit file at www.callcreditcheck.com
• Callcredit has harnessed state-of-the-art information technology with an unrivalled knowledge of the industry's needs to develop a range of innovative information solutions. Solutions that are enabling major lenders and a host of other blue chip companies to address regulatory requirements, make better credit decisions, target new customers more effectively and manage existing customers more profitably.
• Callcredit is one of six core businesses that form the Callcredit Information Group. The other five are:
• Database management company EuroDirect
Market analysis firm GMAP Consulting
• Online payment service provider, Legatio
• Scorecard development and affordability assessment specialist DecisionMetrics
• Marketing services and database specialist, Broadsystem