Payday News Stories, Week of October 24, 2015

Oct 24
The Gadsden Times
The numbers are astonishing. In the first 10 weeks that payday lenders had to record their transactions on a statewide database, Alabamians took out 462,209 payday loans. Based on those numbers, Alabamians are on course to take out just over 2.4 million payday loans on an annual basis.

October 10
Greenville News Online
Column: Don’t trap people in debt if they need credit
The article describes the debt trap faced by those who take out payday loans and the effects of such loans on residents of South Carolina.

October 15
Inside Higher Ed
Federal Watchdog Eyes Accreditor
The CFPB is looking into the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools (ASICS), which serves as an accreditor for for-profit colleges. It is uncertain whether or not the CFPB will begin an investigation into the council itself or the institutions for which it serves.

October 16
Shreveport Times Online
Filling a need, local ministries work to stop predatory lending
In an effort to discourage predatory payday lending in their communities, The Highland Center Financial Ministries has begun a partnership with Pelican State Credit Union to offer short-term, low interest loans. The center is made up of local churches in Shreveport.

October 16
Yahoo Finance
Payday lender prepaid cards: the worst plastic in the world?
Payday lenders have been issuing prepaid cards, from which lenders can withdraw funds from accounts on loan due dates and charge high fees.

October 16
Capital and Main
Payday Loan Lobbyist Nominated to Postal Board
A lobbyist for the payday lending industry has been nominated to the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Board of Governors.

October 16
KCEN-TV Online
Temple City Council Looking to Regulate Credit Access Businesses
The Temple City Council in Texas is considering placing regulations on credit access businesses that would place limits on payday and auto title loan amounts and limits on installment plans. The ordinance would require that these businesses obtain a certificate of registration and keep complete records for a specific amount of time.

October 19
Missouri Times
2015 update: predatory lending money flowing through Missouri politics
The article describes ways in which the payday lending industry provides funds to state legislators in order to receive legislative support and protect their businesses from further regulations.

For more coverage:

  • October 20 | Kansas City Star Online | Ten Missouri megadonors drive largest political contributions
  • October 19
    TIME Online
    5 Phone Calls Scammers Love to Make
    The article describes various types of scams, including situations in which callers claiming to be payday lenders demand payments from supposed borrowers.

    For more coverage:

  • October 19 | WFLA-TV Online | Five phone calls that should scare you
  • October 20
    The Intercept
    Right-Wing Think Tank Shills for Payday Lenders on New York Fed Website

    October 20
    Reuters Online
    First Cash Reports Third Quarter Earnings per Share
    First Cash Financial is gradually phasing out of payday lending operations, as it focuses more heavily on the growth of its retail pawn stores.

    October 20
    Argus Leader Online
    Hildebrand seeks payday loan debate
    Steve Hildebrand proposes a debate over capping interest rates on payday loans within the state of South Dakota and invites Lisa Furlong, Chair of South Dakotans for Fair Lending, to discuss the issue.

    October 20
    Business Insider
    This could be the next ‘subprime mortgage crisis’
    Karen Mills, Senior Fellow at the Harvard Business School and former Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administration, warns that loan brokers whose actions led to the recent economic crisis are becoming more involved in the largely unregulated online lending industry. The CEO of Prosper, Aaron Vermut, compares the online loan industry to payday lending.

    October 20
    Atlantic Online
    Bernie Sanders’s Highly Sensible Plan to Turn Post Offices Into Banks
    Bernie Sanders highlights the potential role of the U.S. Postal Service in providing banking services. The article argues that this plan would reduce reliance on high-interest, short-term loans that create debt traps for people in need.

    October 21
    Miami Herald Online
    New database shows 46,000 payday loans per week in Alabama
    The article describes the heavy reliance of Alabamians on payday lending, noting that roughly 300,000 residents utilize payday loans.

    October 23
    Shelby Star
    Watchdog group files ethics complaint against McHenry
    A watchdog group accuses Rep. Patrick McHenry of taking thousands of dollars in campaign contributions from the payday lending industry at the same time as he was taking official actions in support of the industry in an ethics complaint filed in Washington.