Rather than only taking on new debt for emergencies, home purchases or essentials, debt has become a socially acceptable way to finance a life we cannot afford. Maybe we tell ourselves that as long as our debt is below a certain percentage, we’re doing alright. Or maybe we took on debt to buy something nice, meaning to pay it off immediately…only to still be paying a ridiculous interest rate months or years later.
Here in America this problem is depressingly common. What’s interesting is that this problem with debt is becoming a global epidemic, even in traditionally conservative cultures. In recent years the consumer credit market in Asia has exploded. Ironically, as political and religious freedom spreads around the world we increasingly become slaves to debt and other self-inflicted oppression.
One of the major keys to reducing and controlling debt is understating it. The below set of articles from the Open University take a look at debt and the characteristics of borrowing in the UK. The similarities revealed between UK and American debt are striking, but more importantly the perspective and revelations are incredibly valuable in understanding why.
Exploration of Debt
- Debt: Concepts and Evidence
- Trends in Debt
- Liberalization of the Financial Services Industry
- Structure of the Financial Services Industry in the UK
Cost of Debt
- The Basics of Debt and Interest
- The Official Interest Rate in the UK
- More About Interest
- Annual Percentage Rate (APR)
- People and Interest Rates
Debt and Household Finances
The Process of Borrowing