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One in 10 'permanently overdrawn'

One in 10 Britons is permanently overdrawn and more than a third have dipped into the red at least once during the past year, a new survey suggests.

Around 10% of people admit that their current account is never in the black and 37% of consumers are either always overdrawn or have used their overdraft facility at some point during the past 12 months, according to moneysupermarket.com.

Young people are most likely to be in debt through their current account, with 46% of 20 to 29-year-olds going overdrawn in the past year, while 16% of this age group have never managed to claw their way back into credit.

By contrast, only 18% of the over-70s had used their overdraft at all in the past 12 months.

Despite more than a third of account-holders going overdrawn at some point in the previous year, half said they would cut back on spending or dip into their savings to stop themselves from going into the red.

Kevin Mountford, head of banking at moneysupermarket.com, said: "Times are extremely tough for UK consumers so it's no surprise to see so many Britons living in their overdrafts.

"The recent rises in the cost of living have made the habit of living in the red even harder to break for many consumers and we can expect to see many more people falling back into this position as living costs continue to increase.

"However, it's good to see many people taking a more sensible approach by looking to cut back on spending or use their savings before going into their overdrafts."

Opinium Research questioned 2,050 people during February.

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