Young falling into debt

By Cao Li (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-08-15 07:11

SHANGHAI: Many young people in this city spend more than they earn and depend on parents to pay their bills.

A Shanghai district court found that 80 percent of the young people who are sued for not paying credit card bills depend on their parents for help.

An office worker surnamed Xia was sued early this year by three banks.

She had three credit cards and withdrew from one to pay the arrears of another. She soon found herself unable to pay her debts after quitting her job.

Her parents came to know of her situation, and went to the Shanghai Huangpu District People's Court to pay her debts.

A judge said many parents who are not wealthy are forced to pay the debts of their adult children.

A 23-year-old man surnamed Huang applied for a credit card soon after he graduated from school and found a job. He racked up a debt of 5,000 yuan ($658) in a month. When he was sued for failing to pay, he turned to his parents, both factory workers, for help.

The judge warned that young people should pay more attention to how they spend their money, and banks should tighten rules in the issuance of credit cards.

He said some banks are issuing credit cards to people knowing they are not financially secure.

When China Construction Bank started to issue credit cards to university students two years ago, it required applicants to present an identity card as well as a student card.

Now, all some banks require is an ID card number rather than the actual card.

The Shanghai High People's Court has started to compile a blacklist of defaulters. The list will be distributed to credit-search companies.

People who wish to buy property, secure loans or even apply for a job can be investigated for credit-worthiness.

Some banks have also started to compile blacklists.

(China Daily 08/15/2007 page5)

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