The Covid-19 pandemic posed a considerable risk to the community finance sector. To assist, Fair4All Finance's Covid-19 Resilience Fund provided £3.9 million of support to 31 community finance providers. Read our independent evaluation here.
The Financial Conduct Authority is in the final stages of consulting on its proposals for a new Consumer Duty, which focuses on ensuring improved outcomes for users of financial services and products. In this briefing we consider how the proposed duty could help to address long-standing problems associated with ‘relending’ in the UK’s consumer credit markets.
In 2016 we were jointly commissioned by UNISON and the TUC to undertake an analysis of over-indebtedness in Britain. The report highlighted how traditional measures of the debt burden understated this because they fail to take account of rising living costs. We construct a new measure based not on gross incomes but on the level of interest payments relative to the available surplus of income over non debt related expenditure. We call for this measure to be used to guide future policy interventions.
The pandemic's impacts have been extremely unequal. And there are implications for the way we should assess credit risk. In a briefing paper for the University of Birmingham's Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management ('CHASM'), we call for credit scoring systems to incorporate social justice considerations.
In October 2019, we were commissioned by The Commonwealth to review international approaches to deal with rising household debt. This led to a discussion paper which we presented to Commonwealth Central Bankers at the IMF/World Bank event in Washington DC.
We need urgent action to address Britain’s household debt crisis. Even before the Covid‑19 pandemic 7.2 million people (fourteen percent of the population) were heavily burdened by debt.
This report provides an assessment of the social benefits that have been created by Fair for You: a Community Interest Company providing affordable credit to families with incomes in the lower half of the income distribution throughout the UK.