By James Rodgers
BBC News, Moscow
The amount of bad consumer debt in Russia tripled during 2006 from the year before, according to figures from the Central Bank in Moscow.
Advertising has encouraged Russian spending
Some analysts suggest the situation is under control, but media reports imply Russia could be heading for a credit crisis.
Lenders have announced that stricter checks on potential borrowers will be introduced from 1 March.
Russians racked up more than $1bn (£511m) in bad debts in 2006.
It is less than 10 years since the banking system in Russia all but collapsed - so warnings of a crisis ring alarm bells.
There are plenty of loans on offer in Russia - advertising in the country emphasises the cars and holidays which consumers can pay for if they take out credit.
But advertising fails to remind them about whether they can make the repayments.
Not everyone agrees there's a looming disaster. Rusrating - an agency which gives credit ratings to Russian banks - says the bad loans "are not safe, but not a danger".