Increases in U.K. credit card delinquencies and charge-offs in May drove to new heights the Fitch Ratings indices tracking these performance variables.

The deterioration reflects U.K.'s continued tough economic environment and its impact on the ability of cardholders to make repayments on their credit card debts.

The rating agency said its Charge-off Index (Fitch CI) increased to 9.1% in May from 8.6% in April, marking another historical high for the index.

“The deterioration reflects the continued tough economic environment in the U.K. and its impact on the ability of cardholders to make repayments on their credit card debts,” said Grant England, a director at Fitch. “Fitch expects further performance deterioration through the remainder of 2009, as the economy is expected to remain challenging, which is likely to add further pressure on the ratings of U.K. credit card ABS transactions.”

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