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NCR concerned over increase in impairments

Impaired accounts increase by 790 000 in one quarter.

PRETORIA – Nomsa Motshegare, CEO of the National Credit Regulator (NCR) said the credit bureau statistics for the quarter ended March 2013 indicated a “concerning increase” in the levels of impairment in the quarter.

A total of 189 000 consumers were added to the 9.34m who already had impaired records, bringing the total to 9.53m. This is an increase of 1.1% year on year and means than 47.5% of all credit-active consumers had impaired records.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Motshegare encouraged consumers to monitor their credit health and to approach their credit providers and debt counsellors for assistance.

When the number of accounts that are impaired is taken into account (as one consumer may have more than one account), the number of impaired accounts increased by 790 000 in the quarter. This brings the total number of impaired accounts to 18.31m out of a total of 70.73m.

A total of 394.47 million enquiries were made on consumer credit records, an increase of 16.3% quarter-on-quarter and 27.1% year-on-year. Of the total enquiries made on consumer records, enquiries from banks and other financial institutions accounted for 83.3%, enquiries from retailers accounted for 3.8% and enquiries from telecommunication providers accounted for 5.1%.

Banks and other financial institutions’ enquiries increased by 15.2% from the previous quarter, retailers increased by 20.5% and telecommunication providers decreased by 10.7%.

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