Londoners top national debt ranking

Londoners are the most in debt in the UK shows a new national ranking commissioned by credit reference agency Callcredit. According to the research, residents of six Greater London areas have the country's highest debt rates, while south western towns Taunton, Bath, Bournemouth, Salisbury and Dorchester rank the lowest.

London East, Uxbridge, London South East, Ilford, London North and Harrow represent the UK's top six most indebted postal areas. Liverpool (7th), Birmingham (8th), London North West (9th) and Motherwell (10th) were also highly ranked in the annual figures.

Regionally, London, the North East, West Midlands, Scotland and Wales have the UK's highest debt levels, however other areas have shown a worrying spike since the data was last collected in early 2006. The Isle of Man has leaped a massive 44 places to the country's 56th most in debt postal area, while West London (up 37 places to 42), East Central London (up 27 places to 92)) and Lancaster (up 24 places to 83) also point to a borrowing boom.

Owen Roberts, Head of Callcredit Consumer comments:

"Despite the recent credit crunch, consumers seem to be borrowing more and more, especially in the capital. This goes to further illustrate that the increasing cost of living in London isn't being matched by corresponding salary increases, which leaves people relying more on credit than on savings.

It is important that we all take the time to review our borrowing habits and make sure that we don't end up owing more than we are able to pay back. It doesn't take long to work through your finances; using your bank and credit card statement and a copy of your credit report you can take back control of your financial life".

Key Statistics:
Rank Most indebted area
1 London East
2 Uxbridge
3 London South East
4 Ilford
5 London North
6 Harrow
7 Liverpool
8 Birmingham
9 London North West
10 Motherwell
Rank Least indebted area
1 Dorchester
2 Salisbury
3 Bournemouth
4 Bath
5 Taunton
6 Redhill
7 Oxford
8 Southampton
9 Exeter
10 Harrogate

By region, UK government office regions were ranked in terms of debt as: (1) London (2) North East (3) West Midlands (4) Scotland (5) Wales (6) Northern Ireland (7) North West (8)Yorkshire and The Humber (9) East Midlands (10) East (11) South East (12) South West.

The postal areas with the biggest debt level rises over the past 18 months were: The Isle of Man (up 44 places) West London (up 37 places) East Central London (up 27 places) Lancaster (up 24 places) Slough (up 23 places) Darlington (up 21 places) The Hebrides (up 17 places) Jersey (up 16 places) Bradford (up 12 places) and Carlisle (up 12 places).

The postal areas showing the greatest drops in terms of debt levels over the past 18 months were: Durham (down 29 places) Edinburgh (down 22 places) Aberdeen (down 17 places) Southend on Sea (down 17 places) Cambridge (down 15 places) Stockport (down 15 places) Glasgow (down 14 places) Preston (down 13 places) Blackpool (down 12 places) and Wakefield (down 12 places).

About the research:

Research was collected by Callcredit in September 2007.