Interesting Personal Debt News Links (February 6, 2009)

February 6, 2009

* Number of bankruptcies leaps as companies fold (The Independent Online)

A record number of people in England and Wales were declared bankrupt during the final quarter of 2008 and company liquidations soared by more than 50 per cent, figures showed today.

* GRIM JOBS REPORT SHOWS NO SIGNS OF ECONOMIC RECOVERY (Clemente Lisi, New York Post)

The country’s unemployment rate jumped to a staggering 7.6 percent last month after recession-battered employers eliminated 598,000 jobs — the most at one time since 1974 — in another sign that the job climate is deteriorating at an alarming rate.

* Lender guilty of rape and assault (BBC News)

A loan shark who raped a client and threatened to petrol bomb another woman’s house has been convicted of rape, blackmail and assault.

* Consumer borrowing drops again in Dec. (Newsweek)

WASHINGTON – Consumer borrowing fell for a third straight month in December, the longest stretch in 17 years, as households cut spending amid a steep recession and rising job layoffs.

* Bomb threat loan shark convicted of blackmail (Banbury Guardian)

Paul Nicholson, 39, told one woman her mother’s house would be petrol bombed if repayments were not made and told another distraught woman: “Your priority is to pay me, not feed your kids.”

* Analyst: Prudential loss not so damaging as thought (Jersey Journal)

Prudential Financial Inc., the second- biggest U.S. life insurer, advanced in New York trading after Morgan Stanley said a $1.57 billion fourth-quarter loss didn’t damage the company’s capital position.

* Personal bankruptcies hit new record (Larry Elliott, Guardian Unlimited)

Personal bankruptcy hit a record level and company failures soared by 50% as the collapse in the economy in the final three months of 2008 took its toll, official figures showed today.

* Low rates defuse ‘exploding’ ARMs (Les Christie, Money)

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — A wave of resetting adjustable rate mortgages had been poised to add to the flood of foreclosures as their rates jumped.

* Consumer credit falls more than expected in Dec. (Martin Crutsinger)

WASHINGTON — Consumer borrowing fell for a third straight month in December, the longest stretch in 17 years, as households cut spending amid a steep recession and rising job layoffs.

* Moody’s to review ratings on $300bn of debt (Nicole Bullock, The Financial Times)

The commercial real estate market received another blow on Thursday when Moodys Investors Service said it would review ratings on about $300bn of debt backed by US commercial mortgages.

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