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Economic downturn prompts many to pawn possessions

Posted by seumasach on January 14, 2012

Bournemouth Echo

14th January, 2012

CASH-STRAPPED customers are pawning their most prized possessions in a bid to keep financially afloat and pay their bills.

Unlike many struggling high street companies, pawnbrokers are attracting new customers.

According to the National Pawnbrokers’ Association business is growing by ten per cent a year with a new shop opening every week in the UK.

Boscombe-based George A Payne & Son Ltd has been providing quality jewellery and pawnbroking services for more than a century.

Director Nicholas Payne told the Daily Echo: “There has been a huge increase in demand. Because we specialise in jewellery people tend to bring in items such as wedding and engagement rings as well as prestige watches.

“People are struggling and credit is harder to come by. When they have reached their credit card limit they are finding it is more difficult to borrow from the banks. Unsecured loans involve huge amounts of interest. Unlike banks, we don’t carry out a lot of checks.”

He added: “The service we provide is very simple and risk-free; it is just another form of credit. Our customers have a valuable item which they use to borrow against, to tide them over. More than 90 per cent of the items are reclaimed.

“We have seen business steadily increasing over the years; pawnbroking has become a more recognised way of borrowing money and there are a lot more pawnbrokers out there.

“For short-term lending, pawnbroking offers quite competitive terms. Typically our interest rates are five per cent per month; an APR of 69 per cent.”

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