Friday, September 4, 2009

Britons hide 217,000 credit cards
by Gill Montia

New research from Halifax indicates that Britons have between them over 217,000 credit cards that are kept secret from partners and spouses.According to the lender, they are used to buy items that people would rather their partners didn’t know about and to hide existing debt, while some claim their secret cards are kept solely for emergencies.Purchases made on hidden plastic are relatively modest, with the largest item respondents admitted to buying costing less than £500. The figures also reveal the extent to which people are honest about their credit card usage because only 1% of credit card holders with partners feel the need to hide the truth.However, those who prefer to keep their credit cards close to their chest are reminded by Halifax that when applying for products in joint names, couples may be asked to disclose any outstanding debts.According to APACS, the body representing payments service providers, there are 30.2 million credit card holders in the UK with 71.3 million UK-issued credit and charge cards between them.In 2008, total UK consumer spending with credit cards stood £126.2 billion and 60% of cardholders clear their balance in full each month.

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