A common operational European definition of over-indebtednessKey contributors (PFRC): Professor Elaine Kempson, Andrea Finney, Adele Atkinson
Funded by: European Commission via Observatoire de l'Epargne Européen
Published by: European Commission
Publication date: May 2008
With the expansion of access to credit and the provision of new products in financial services, consumer over-indebtedness is increasingly moving into the focus of the European public. Yet, so far there has not been a standard definition of over-indebtedness which is accepted throughout the Union. This is one of the reasons why there are no comparable statistics about the current state, extent and past development of over-indebtedness within individual Member States. Such a lack hampers the evaluation of policy measures and undermines any well-founded discussion about the effectiveness of prevention measures.
Against this background, the European Commission commissioned a study with the following objectives:
- To identify the nature and causes of over-indebtedness;
- To review the definitions and measurement of over-indebtedness; and
- To propose common definitions and indicators.
Led by the European Savings Institute (Observatoire de l'Epargne Européen), the research team included PFRC, the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) and the European Credit Research Institute (ECRI).
In December 2007 the European Commission held a conference in Brussels to disseminate and discuss the findings of the study, including presentations from Professor Elaine Kempson, Andrea Finney and Adele Atkinson.
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