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Personal loan providers "thinking twice"

APRs for personal loans have increased threefold over the past 12 months due to the credit crunch, according to a financial website.A new report from MoneyExpert.com, released today, compared personal loan rates in January and those of today.It found that the average APR had gone from 10.65 to 29.4 per cent over this period.This is despite the Bank of England's official rate being cut from 5.5 per cent to just two per cent.The credit crunch has also hit personal loan provision, with just 57 products left on the high street.In January, this figure stood at 105.Sean Gardner, chief executive of MoneyExpert.com, said: "December is normally a time to give, not it seems if you're a loan provider however. With unemployment on the up, lenders are increasingly thinking twice before offering money they're much less sure they'll get back. "The cost of this risk is being passed on to us all with higher APRs and fewer products available."

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