U.K. credit card payment delinquencies set a record in December as the worsening economy forced more people into bankruptcy, according to data released Tuesday by Fitch Inc.
The percentage of borrowers in arrears by more than 60 days increased 50 basis points from September, to 4.3%, according to the New York rating firm. It based its figures on an index of bonds backed by card receivables.
"The magnitude and speed of deterioration" in economic conditions, as well as increases in personal bankruptcy filings, "are concerning trends," Steven Webber, a London asset-backed debt analyst at Fitch, said in a press release.
In the fourth quarter U.K. personal filings for protection from creditors increased 24.6% from a year earlier, Fitch said.
Individual voluntary arrangements, where borrowers seek to avoid bankruptcy and reorganize debts with creditors, rose by 11.6%, Fitch said, citing data from the U.K. Insolvency Service.