Internet finance soars

The number of borrowers in the UK going online to compare loans and apply for credit has soared over the past year, says new research.

Internet-only applications for unsecured and homeowner loans have shot up since the government changed rules which required forms to be signed and returned.

And as people in the UK grow more confident with managing their money online, they are increasingly using the web to manage all aspects of their finances.

GfK Financial, who conducted the research with Sainsbury’s Bank, said that wider access to high speed connections, better awareness of security and the 24/7 availability of the web was fuelling the growth.

GfK estimates that 4.8 million people will complete an online application for a homeowner loan or other financial product between June 2005 and June 2006.

“The internet has become an important life tool, playing an increasing role in the way we conduct our daily affairs – whether it’s shopping, booking a holiday or sorting our finances,” said Kevin Barrett, Sainsbury’s Bank director of e-commerce.

“The web plays a crucial role in the financial services industry, helping to provide customers with a convenient way to manage their finances. Society now operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and as such the nine to five traditional banking model is being left behind.”

© Adfero Ltd

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