Deeply indebted consumers have been warned not to splurge on Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales as retailers tempt even the most financially distressed, said Debt Rescue CEO Neil Roets.
Black Friday is taking place on Friday, 23 and Cyber Monday, 26 November.
“While it is true that there will be some very tempting deals on offer, consumers should think long and hard before plunging themselves even deeper into debt by splurging on luxury goods that they most likely don’t need.”
Roets said that over the past several years, his firm has seen the impact that Black Friday and Christmas shopping sprees have had on consumers over reckless spending .
He pointed out that South African consumers collectively owe their creditors in excess of R1.7trn with most of them three months or more in arrears with their repayments.
“We are far from seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. It is our belief and many leading economists share that belief that we are far from staging a recovery.”
Roets was on the view that things are going to get a lot tougher before they get better.
“Now is not the time to act recklessly. On the contrary – it is more important now than ever before to implement fiscal discipline and save whatever money is left over at the end of the month.”
Roets suggested that consumers only buy what is absolutely necessary.
“While we all feel that we desperately need a holiday and the end of a brutal year, keep those holidays within budget and don’t think that if you don’t have the money for school fees in December that the money will somehow, magically become available in January when the schools reopen,” he said.