Spending on ‘Isolation Economy’ categories of groceries, alcohol, entertainment and hobbies & crafts running at £247 million per week during lockdown, equivalent to an annual £12.9bn increase. However, average overall consumer spending has decreased by 31% per person, equating to an annual fall of £215bn. Local economies could be relative long-term gainers as a result…

The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October, the Chancellor has announced. In a boost to millions of jobs and businesses, Rishi Sunak said the furlough scheme would be extended by a further four months with workers continuing to receive 80% of their current salary. Chancellor Rishi Sunak said…

New figures released by the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA) show that consumer finance new business fell in March 2020 by 16% compared with the same month in 2019, and contracted by 4% in Q1 2020 as a whole. Credit card and personal loan new business together fell in March 2020 by 10% compared with…

Nearly 1.2 million payment holidays on credit cards and personal loans have been granted by UK banks for customers struggling with the COVID-19 outbreak. New figures from UK Finance have shown that almost 700,000 customer accounts have been given a payment holiday on their credit card. with another 470,000 payment holidays agreed on personal loans.…

Profits at Virgin Money more than halved in the first half of its financial year, with impairment charges in the six months to March tripling to £232 million, from £77 million a year earlier. The firm’s underlying pre-tax profit was down from £280 million to £120 million, with statutory net profit of £22 million higher…

Families are coming to terms with the fact that their finances could be negatively affected by the coronavirus pandemic long after the lockdown lifts. According to the second week of comparethemarket.com’s Financial Confidence Tracker, over two thirds (67%) of households with children at home think the economic impact of the pandemic will have a long-term…

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) has revealed that the number of new car sales in the UK has declined by 97% in April. Only 871 cars went to retail customers last month, with the rest of the 4,321 cars sold going to fleets or business buyers. The figures are at the lowest…

Age UK has written an open letter to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to help older and vulnerable customers who are struggling to get cash as the lockdown continues, saying that “we are now approaching a critical time in the crisis…for older people.” The letter asks the FCA to consider introducing guidance to force banks…

Lending platform. Freedom Finance has announced the launch of ‘Fusion Score’ the first open banking enabled score that creates a single metric that interprets a customer’s eligibility based on both credit and transactional data, a first for the lending industry. The Fusion Score can unlock better rates or a smoother journey for those with established…

TransUnion has appointed Bill Flynn as General Counsel and Chief Risk Officer for its UK business. In this role, Flynn will lead TransUnion’s engagement with industry regulators and oversee in-house legal, risk, compliance and company secretarial functions. With significant experience in financial services, Flynn has held leadership roles with high-profile businesses operating across Europe and…