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One in four mortgage payers 'at risk' if interest rates rise

Robust wake up calls should be sounded to the estimated two million mortgage payers who would find themselves in serious financial trouble if and when interest rates rise, a think tank has warned.

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Problem debt 'will not evaporate with return to growth'

A return to economic growth is not enough to make the household debts built up before 2008 "simply evaporate", a finance expert warned.

Matthew Whittaker, chief economist at the Resolution Foundation said:

It would be a serious mistake to think that the legacy of problem debt built up in the pre-crisis years will simply evaporate with a return to economic growth.

The magnitude of the stock of debt is simply too large, given expectations that income growth will be gradual at best.

And while the mortgage market largely remains competitive, tighter lending criteria means that some highly-stretched borrowers face limited choices. There is a pressing need for regulation to respond to this new context.

– Matthew Whittaker

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