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CABs say UK consumers ill-informed about personal finances

British consumers are paying a high price for being ill-informed and unconfident when it comes to making crucial decisions about their personal finances, according to a new report from the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureaux.

NACAB estimates the collective cost to consumers of poor financial literacy skills could be very significant with £4 billion paid in unnecessary interest on consumer credit, £4.5 billion paid in inappropriate debt consolidation borrowing and £3 billion in unclaimed means-tested benefits.

NACAB Chief Executive David Harker says: "Dramatic changes in the financial services market over the last 25 years mean people now have a bewildering number of financial choices to make and responsibilities to exercise. Financial literacy is no longer just a desirable trait to be encouraged —it is an essential requirement for everyone if they are to benefit from these changes rather than finding themselves counting the cost."

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