Nine million people borrowed more in 2020 as result of COVID-19 pandemic

22 Jan 2021

Almost nine million people had to borrow more money in 2020 as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed.

According to the ONS, the proportion of workers borrowing £1,000 or more increased from 35% to 45% since June 2020. It found that the self-employed were more likely to borrow money than employees.

The ONS suggested that young people and low earners have been affected the most by the COVID-19 pandemic. It added that individuals aged under 30 were 35% more likely to be furloughed than the population as a whole.

Commenting on the data, Gueorguie Vassilev, Senior Research Officer at the ONS, said: 'Many people took a financial hit in the first months of the pandemic, either being furloughed or working fewer hours.

'What we are seeing now though is a widening financial gap between households, where some people are relying on savings or borrowing to make ends meet. Those hardest hit are people on low pay, young people and parents of dependent children.'

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