Be Christmas Miserly!!!
Spending is Fun!
We all love buying the latest toys and games, not to mention clothes, football kits and the latest CDs and DVDs we simply must have…
Birthdays and Christmas are especially great because of all the gifts we receive! Well, the presents don’t fall from the sky (not even fall down the chimney!) so someone has to buy them for us. And guess what??? We Brits are sooooo lucky because economists expect us to spend more on Christmas this year than ever before.
No wonder the retailers are so happy. They’re positively rubbing their hands with glee at the thought of the £17 billion to be spent on gifts and prezzies in the run up to Christmas. This is a rise of 22% on last year. And we’re not just talking about the high street: the online retailers are expecting some 25 million people to spend £7 billion in the 10 weeks leading up to Christmas.
Plastic, Plastic, Plastic!
Where does all this money come from? How do we pay for it all? Plastic, plastic, plastic! Credit cards, charge cards, debit cards and store cards will be the method of payment for most of the money spent. What’s more, it’ll be months after our leftover turkey is finished that we’ll finally pay off the Christmas spending spree. In fact OINK! has learnt that, on average, it will be way into March until we’ve paid for it all.
Paid By The Minute!
But that’s okay because we’re saving the other nine months of the year, right?… Er…no. We’re not saving enough during the rest of the year, either. So, total personal debt in the UK (that’s all of us!) is over £1.25 trillion – that is £125 billion. This whopping amount of cash is said to be increasing by £1 million every four minutes. This, of course, includes mortgages – the money you borrow when you want to buy a house.
Why? Basically, because it’s is too easy to get into debt, to get credit from the banks and the credit card companies. So it’s their fault, is it? Well, not really, no. They are hardly forcing us to spend money; they do make it easier, but… we are the ones doing the spending. British debt is twice that of our European neighbours.
Is debt a bad thing? Like most things, a little is okay but a lot is very bad. If we spend a bit more one month we know that next month we have to spend a little less. But if we’re always spending more than we get, it become a viscious circle, drawing us into a deep debt pit requiring more and more money to get out! Aaaahhh!!