For a number of years Manchester has developed an unwanted reputation as being one of the poorest and worst places to live in the UK. A number of independent surveys and reports have chronicled the high levels of poverty and rundown facilities faced by many living in and around the city. This is despite it being the second largest economy in the UK, with a GVA (gross value added) of £62.8 billon.

More recently, an award winning credit broker CashLady have compiled data from over 700,000 payday loan applicants that highlights the financial difficulties of those living in the city.

Their analysis report is based on information received between January 1st 2017 and December 31st 2018. It provides a general outline of the type of people who are requesting payday loans, and offers an insight into the tough financial balancing act Manchester residents have to manage.

Financial strife in Manchester

Both inner and greater Manchester feature high on the list of the most deprived areas in UK released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) in 2016. Salford appeared in the top ten of the list, despite its revival over the past few decades. Oldham is another area that features some of the poorest neighbourhoods in Britain.

While, unsurprisingly, CashLady have received more applications from people living in London over the past two years, Manchester has also remained as the second largest provider of payday loan borrowers. However, the city is also joined by the likes of Liverpool and Birmingham on the list, pointing towards a wider issue of money issues for workers in the northwest.

What CashLady’s data is also able to reveal is the reason the payday loan requests are needed. This also features some revealing stats that could serve as a wider indication of the financial status of people living right across the UK.

For example, aside from having to find money for an unexpected expense, bill payments remained the second largest reason why a payday loan was needed. Although, perhaps more worryingly, the need for extra financial support to cover bills has increased over the past two years. In 2017, 17.90% of borrowers stated this as the reason for the loan, while in 2018 this grew to 18.91%, a jump of over 2%.

On a more positive note, payday loans required to help cover rent and mortgage payments also fell during the same period. Of the 9 most common reasons given for requesting a loan it remains smallest, with the numbers changing from 2.57% in 2017, to 2.27% twelve months later.

Other numbers to take note of include a lower average loan request value, which fell from £412 to £394 across a 24 month period, and a slight rise in average housing expenditure costs, climbing from £214 in 2017, to £243 in 2018.

While this data set has been extracted from applicants across the UK as a whole, with Manchester featuring so high up on the list it indicates these figures are an increasingly accurate depiction of life for a growing number of people in the city.


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