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Is ″Buy Now, Pay Later″ the consumer credit magic bullet we’ve all been waiting for?

BIScom Subsection: 
Nigel Morris-Cotterill

Buy Now, Pay Later is a rapidly growing consumer credit sector. Last year, it is reported, it was used in 3.6% of retail sales in the UK. Is it a panacea or a plague?

Long Read: 17 pages.


Another early form of credit for consumers was ″layaway.″ Under this system, a customer would be given a payment card and would make regular payments towards the price of a good – say a sofa or even a blanket. The item would be stored by the shop until it had been paid for. Arguably, it isn’t really credit at all. As a matter of Common Law, when the item was allocated to the purchaser, it is ″delivered″ and risk but not ownership passes. Some shops would sell the item, expecting to get another one in stock in time for delivery: that didn’t always work out so well.

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