Britain confirms three-month freeze on auto finance repayments in pandemic

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s financial watchdog has confirmed there will be a three-month repayment freeze for consumers with auto finance leases, goods bought on high-cost credit, and pawnbroker credit during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said on Friday it will be introducing the package of measures to support consumer credit customers facing payment difficulties due to coronavirus.

Payday lending firms that offer short-term loans at a high interest rate, will be able to provide a one month interest-free payment freeze with no additional interest.

“Many firms are already working with their customers, but these measures ensure all consumers affected by the coronavirusemergency can apply for a temporary freeze on their payments,” Christopher Woolard, interim Chief Executive at the FCA, said in a statement.

The measures will come into effect on April 27.

Reporting by Clara Denina