Kiwis remain wary of credit

Last updated 10:54 24/07/2013

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People plan to save more and owe less in the months ahead, despite the improving economy and low interest rates, a survey shows.

Credit caution and saving more appears to have taken root after the 2008 global financial crisis, a credit information agency says.

A Dun & Bradstreet survey shows 39 per cent of New Zealanders say they are more likely to save money in the next three months, while 28 per cent are less likely to save.

The reserved financial intentions have held steady for the past three quarters, even though the economy is growing, unemployment is down and house prices are up.

New Zealanders do not plan to apply for new credit cards or increase credit limits, despite low interest rates, the survey shows.

"New Zealanders' focus on financial stability appears unlikely to shift in the short term," Dun & Bradstreet general manager Lance Crooks said.

The survey showed 29 per cent of people expected to have a lower level of household debt in the September quarter, up from 23 per cent a year ago.

The survey's index of financial stress has fallen for five months in a row as households benefit from a stronger financial position and an improving economy.

Consumers were not resorting to debt as they had in the past and showed a "much-needed change in attitude to savings".

The survey talked to more than 900 people about their finances.

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