Over-indebtedness Trends in Europe – Issue No. 2

The European Quality of Life Survey (2016) shows the improving trend in the incidence of arrears on various types of dues among European households. Still, the utility bills are the largest burden, with 11% of adults in the EU-28 making late payments. Low-income people are most severely affected. Twice as many low-income people are overdue on each type of payment, not only utility bills, compared to the general population. It seems that over-indebtedness is on the decline as the incidence of arrears in general population has decreased. Despite that, microfinance institutions observe increasing over-indebtedness of their clients.   In the opinion of 63% of MFIs the level of debt load of their clients increased, mostly among low-income households.

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