British consumers are still saving less, according to new figures from the UK’s high street banks.
In July, personal saving deposits increased by only 2.3%, the lowest growth rate for eight years and below the rate of inflation. Deposits into ISAs also saw a slowdown.
There was a 3.3% drop in the amount of money savers put into ISAs in July, with only £162million deposited, compared to the same time last year. That is the largest decrease since the financial crash of 2007.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) also found that the savings rate – the amount people are saving out of their income – dropped to 1.7% in the first quarter of 2017, the lowest rate recorded.
It has been suggested that the relative drop in wages, compared to the cost of living is a factor to less people saving. Another suggestion is the fact that interest rates have been at an all-time low for an extended period, making savings a harder sell, or that tax changes to ISAs, introduced in April 2016 have made ISAs less attractive.
According to a fraud prevention group, identity theft has reached epidemic levels, with those in their thirties being targeted the most.
Nearly 90,000 cases were recorded in the first six months of 2017 by Cifas, the anti-fraud organisation. That is a 5% increase on the same period last year and a record high.
Fraudsters obtain a consumer’s personal information and then pretend to be that person and apply for loans or store cards in their name.
In property, house sales recorded in July were almost identical to this time last year, data from HM Revenue & Customs has found.
A total of 107,500 homes were sold during July, with sales topping 100,000 for the third month this year. Sales in March and June also went over the 100,000 mark, although generally the UK housing market is static.
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said earlier this month that its members had reported seeing the slowdown in the market spreading from London to other parts of the South East of England.
While figures from the ONS suggest that, there was a wide variation in prices changes from across the UK.