Keen to show the banking industry is doing its bit, trade body UK Finance at the end of last week released some figures designed to show off the “unprecedented support for consumer credit borrowers put in place by the banking and finance industry”.

Under the beady eyes of the Financial Conduct Authority, of course, and would this have happened if it hadn’t engaged in some judicious poking and prodding? But let’s set that to one side for a moment, because the numbers are huge.

Some 1 million payment deferrals on credit cards, a further 707,000 on personal loans and more than 27 million customers offered interest free borrowing of up to £500 via pre-arranged overdrafts. That racks up to a staggering £13.5bn if everyone who so far has one uses the full amount.

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