Dec 15, 2021

Buy Now Pay Later: New data from Klarna finds women spend less and repay sooner

Women repay earlier and are even less likely than men to default, in the context of extremely low overall default rates, says Klarna.

London, 9 December, 2021 – Klarna, a leading global retail bank, payments and shopping service, today revealed new data which challenges popular misconceptions about the company’s consumers. 

In the debate on Buy Now Pay Later, it is often claimed that women are at greater risk from getting into debt with this growing way to pay. According to new data, however, women spend less per Klarna order, are more likely to make early payments and less likely to fall into default than their male counterparts. 

On average women spend £76 per order, about a quarter less than men (£98). When it comes to early repayments 23% of women make their Klarna payments more than 9 days early, compared with 19% of men. Klarna Pay in 30 gives consumers 30 days to pay for a purchase, and Pay in 3 allows consumers to pay in 3 installments spread over 60 days. On average, it takes just 38 days for Klarna consumers to completely repay purchases across both these products, reflecting the short-term nature of these products and the fact that many consumers make early payments1.

The average age of a Klarna consumer is creeping up as more and more consumers are attracted to the ability to spread the cost of payments with no risk of late fees and a clear payment structure. The average Klarna consumer in the UK is now 34 years old, up from 33 in 2020, and the fastest-growing retail segments reflect this demographic shift with Electronics, Health & Beauty and Automotive Products each growing over 160% compared with last year2.

Default rates across all consumers remain much lower than the credit card industry and the gender split tells a similar story of responsible use. The default rate3 for women is now well below 0.5% and is almost half that of men. Women of all ages are more punctual payers than men of all age groups, with 45-54 year olds having the lowest default rate across both men and women. Klarna consumers who fall into default only ever owe the cost of their original purchase and are restricted from using Klarna again.  

“Last year, 46% of British credit card holders paid interest on their Christmas shopping but with Klarna, you only ever pay the original price of the purchase,” said Alex Marsh, Head of Klarna UK, “What this data shows is that women are simply smarter with their than money than men, especially when credit cards have increased their interest rates to record-breaking levels.”   

1 Klarna transactional data H1 2021

2 Klarna transactional data H1 2021

3 Defaults are defined here as amounts left unpaid after 180 days.

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