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The determinants of unsecured borrowing: evidence from the British Household Panel Survey

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  • Ana Del-Rí­o
  • Garry Young

Abstract

Household indebtedness has risen sharply in recent years, with large increases in both secured and unsecured borrowing. In this paper, waves 5 and 10 of the British Household Panel Survey (BHPS) for 1995 and 2000 are used to examine the determinants of participation in the unsecured debt market and the amount borrowed. Probit models for participation are estimated and age, income, positive financial prospects and housing tenure are found to be very significant and have the expected sign according to a life-cycle model for consumption. Regressions to explain the level of borrowing by individuals suggest that income is the main variable explaining crosssectional differences in unsecured debts. The increase in aggregate unsecured debt between 1995 and 2000 does not seem to be closely linked to changes in the determinants of debt market participation and has been mainly associated with the larger amounts borrowed by those with debts. Increases in income, better educational qualifications and improved prospects regarding the financial situation contributed to this result. The major part of the overall increase in unsecured debt is not explained by variables at the individual level, but is accounted for by common, unmodelled macroeconomic factors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Bank of England in its series Bank of England working papers with number 263.

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Date of creation: May 2005
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Handle: RePEc:boe:boeewp:263

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  1. Ana del Río & Garry Young, 2005. "The impact of unsecured debt on financial distress among British households," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0512, Banco de Espa�a.
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Cited by:
  1. Ottaviani, Cristina & Vandone, Daniela, 2011. "Impulsivity and household indebtedness: Evidence from real life," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(5), pages 754-761.
  2. repec:eme:jecpps:v:5:y:2011:i:4:p:248-264 is not listed on IDEAS
  3. Adela Luque, 2005. "Skill mix and technology in Spain: evidence from firm level data," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0513, Banco de Espa�a.
  4. Herrala, Risto & Kauko, Karlo, 2007. "Household loan loss risk in Finland – estimations and simulations with micro data," Research Discussion Papers 5/2007, Bank of Finland.
  5. Luis J. Álvarez & Emmanuel Dhyne & Marco M. Hoeberichts & Claudia Kwapil & Hervé le Bihan & Patrick Lünnemann & Fernando Martins & Roberto Sabbatini & Harald Stahl & Philip Vermeulen & Jouko Vilmun, 2005. "Sticky prices in the euro area: a summary of new micro evidence," Banco de Espa�a Working Papers 0542, Banco de Espa�a.
  6. repec:etr:series:v:3:y:2012:i:11:p:341-350 is not listed on IDEAS
  7. Lobna ABID & Zouari Dorra & Zouari Ghorbel Sonia, 2012. "Household indebtedness in Tunisia," E3 Journal of Business Management and Economics., E3 Journals, vol. 3(10), pages 341-350.
  8. Chen, Nan-Kuang & Chen, Shiu-Sheng & Chou, Yu-Hsi, 2010. "House prices, collateral constraint, and the asymmetric effect on consumption," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(1), pages 26-37, March.
  9. Ke Chen Chen & Mali Chivakul, 2008. "What Drives Household Borrowing and Credit Constraints? Evidence from Bosnia & Herzegovina," IMF Working Papers 08/202, International Monetary Fund.
  10. M.A. Akudugu, 2011. "Rural banks' financial capital and livelihoods development of women farmers in Ghana," Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 5(2), pages 248-264, September.
  11. Matthias Keese, 2009. "Triggers and Determinants of Severe Household Indebtedness in Germany," Ruhr Economic Papers 0150, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.
  12. Matthias Keese, 2009. "Triggers and Determinants of Severe Household Indebtedness in Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 239, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).

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