The Money Statistics are out today, and the latest figures show that while falling fuel costs are bringing down bills, rent keeps rising and the growth in the amount households owe continues unabated.
In December 2015 it cost £52.19 to fill a 50-litre petrol tank, the lowest cost since petrol topped £1 a litre in autumn 2007. Significant falls in the cost of gas also meant that households were spending 16p less every day (£3.78)on water, gas and electricity every day in Q3 2015 than they were in the previous quarter.
It’s not all been good news for consumers though. Monthly rent in England rose by £25 to £600, and by £50 to £1,400 in London in the 12 months to September 2015. It now costs 144% more to rent a two-bedroom flat in the capital than in the country as a whole.
All of this has been accompanied by the continuing rise of consumer credit. The average household now owes £353 more in unsecured debt than they did one year ago – that’s a total of £6,598 per household and £178 billion in total.
Other figures in January’s Money Statistics include:
- People in the UK owed £1.458 trillion at the end of November 2015. This is up from £1.423 trillion at the end of November 2014 – an extra £708.35 per UK adult.
- Christmas spending began to show in October 2015 with an average of 434 purchases – up 23 from September – made in the UK every second using debit and credit cards, based on figures from the UK Cards Association.
- The Office of National Statistics says that the average house price for first-time buyers was £218,000 in October 2015, which is an annual increase of 5.9%.
- In Q3 2015, households saved an average of 4.4% of their post-tax income, including benefits – the lowest since the spring of 1963.
Get the full picture, and many more fascinating facts about money in the UK in our monthly Money Statistics.