Study: Consumers overwhelmed by debt

Consumers with the earning capacity of between R17,000 - R25,000 are overwhelmed by debt.

Market researchers say consumers with the earning capacity of between R17,000 - R25,000 are overwhelmed by debt. Picture: EWN.

CAPE TOWN - Market researchers on Wednesday said while consumer finances are not improving across all age groups, there are growing concerns for those who are overwhelmed by debt.

University of South Africa (Unisa) market researcher Bernadene de Clercq says there has been more than a 10 percent decrease in the cash flow of consumers in the last two years.

She says spending patterns show utilities bills still take payment preference.

But de Clercq says consumers with the earning capacity of between R17,000 - R25,000 are overwhelmed by debt.

"Some of them are not financially literate and that leads to debt."

De Clerq believes with a stagnating economy and high unemployment rate, the situation will not change soon.