Britons increasingly shop for leisure rather than because they need to and can feel inadequate if they do not shop regularly, which is raising their levels of debt, an expert has claimed.
The environmentalist Sir Jonathon Porritt made his comments to BBC Two’s Daily Politics show in response to a report which suggests shopping habits have changed.
"A lot of the troubles that we are in at the moment in the economy [are] because people are out there shopping for things they don’t really need, they are just building up their credit cards," he said.
Earlier this year, online services comparison site uSwtich.com published research which showed 3.5 million credit card users could face a "debt sentence" of nearly 30 years if they only made the minimum repayment each month.
Mike Naylor, personal finance expert at the website, warned some consumers could find they had repaid their mortgages before their credit card debt.