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1 in 8 youths surveyed have taken out a loan

1 in 8 youths surveyed have taken out a loan

A children’s charity has released a study revealing that 13 per cent of youths between the ages of 12 and 18 have taken out loans.

A shocking report by Action for Children has uncovered a worrying amount of borrowing amongst young people.

The charity is particularly concerned about the impact of the run up to Christmas. It has discovered that 55 per cent of children have not received any financial education, and of those that had learned about finances, only 27 per cent learnt about money at school.

The study went on to say that “ease of access” was the main reason why young people were accessing these financial products.

Of those who had borrowed, 41 per cent of those surveyed had chosen payday loans, with 38 per cent choosing to borrow from high street lenders.

Sir Tony Hawkhead, Chief Executive of Action for Children, felt that interest products and companies are now far too easy for young people to access.

“Some young people are less likely to have the financial skills they need, they may have to live on a low income or are not in education,” he said. “They are also not able to learn about money at home or at school where other young people do.”

“Add in baffling financial jargon and a lack of knowledge will dramatically create a vicious circle of debt, increasing the risk of mental health problems and unemployment.”

The charity went on to conclude that greater attention must be given to developing financial education for young people who are at risk of experiencing debt.

This could be achieved by targeting who needs the most support, developing additional support through schooling and extracurricular means and asking those affected what financial education means to them.

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