“Norway has sprung back to life, with queues at shopping centres and crowded bars and restaurants nationwide. It is therefore a pleasant surprise to see that consumer debt has continued to fall in June, says Audun Danielsen, Commercial Director at Kredinor.
According to fresh figures from the Norwegian Debt Register, consumer debt fell by NOK 3 billion in June. Consumer debt in Norway now totals NOK 130.2 billion.
“People in Norway have lived quieter lives through the pandemic, and have therefore saved up a lot of money, which they are now spending as society reopens. Few people finance their beachside beer with borrowed funds,” Danielsen says.
The figures show that consumer debt has continued to fall in June, despite an increase in consumer spending.
The Norwegian Debt Register has a positive impact
Consumer debt has fallen steadily throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. According to the Norwegian Debt Register, there has been a 16.3 per cent reduction since March 2020. The launch of the Norwegian Debt Register two years ago has had a major impact, according to Kredinor.
“The establishment of the Debt Register gave banks a much better overview of customers’ total debt position. This indicates that those who are granted loans are now materially better customers than before the debt register existed. And those customers who nevertheless end up in the debt collection process are better equipped to pay what they owe,” says Danielsen.
The Norwegian Debt Register confirms its importance for reducing consumer debt
Audun Rønningen Danielsen admits that the Covid-19 crisis is unique from an economic perspective.
“In practically every crisis, we have seen a substantial rise in the number of cases going to debt collection. For example, during the 2008–2009 credit crunch, debt collection cases rose by upwards of 20 per cent. The opposite occurred during the pandemic. People have paid off their loans, fewer cases have gone to debt collection, and our customer service centre has received few Covid-related calls,” says Danielsen.
Kredinor handles around half the Norwegian consumer debt collection market.