Household debts jump to the highest level in nine years

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Thailand’s household debts have increased to 298,005 baht per household, which is the highest in nine years, according to the findings of the University of Thai Chamber of Commerce.

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The findings came from a survey of 1,221 samples during September 1-12, said Thanawat Pholvichai, director of the university’s Economic and Business Forecast Centre.

He noted that household debts increased by an average of 20,000-30,000 baht a year, but, for this year, the debts jumped to 50,000 baht per household by average and the main cause stemmed from obligations to pay installments for cars, credit cards and consumer products averaging 14,889 baht each month.  Debts were also incurred from children’s tuition fees and daily expenses.

Thanawat said the findings also show 74 percent of the debtors have defaulted on repayments because their earnings are not enough to cover their monthly outgoings.

The Yingluck government’s “first car” policy was blamed for causing household debts to jump sharply.