Payday loans in the spotlight: one million use them to pay bills – and Wonga records 269 per cent profit rise

New research from Santander suggests that one million people are resorting to short-term, high interest loans to meet their monthly household bills.  

The figures were released just ahead of a statement by the short-term credit company Wonga, which reportedly saw profits rise 269pc to £45.8m in 2011, with revenue growing to £185m.

The payday loan industry is being investigated by the Office of Fair Trading over allegations including rolling over loans so charges escalate, targeting groups who are clearly unsuitable, irresponsible lending and not treating customers who get into financial difficulty fairly.

For more on the Santander research, click here

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For more on Wonga’s financial results, go to