• News
  • Celebrities
  • Finance
  • Crypto
  • Travel
  • Entertainment
  • Health
  • Others

The Sad and Scandalous Comeback of Payday Lenders

Mike’s excellent story today about the weak reforms of the payday lending industry proposed by onetime industry foe Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.) details a disappointing setback for efforts to curb the insidious practice of charging down-on-their-luck consumers loan shark rates for short-term loans.

Until this move by Gutierrez, whose top contributor to his 2008 campaign was a payday lender, consumer advocates fighting the industry were on a roll. They were regularly convincing state legislators that had once bent over backward for the industry to change course, limiting the interest rates payday lenders could charge and banning some of the industry’s more abusive practices. The change of heart came about as states like Ohio found themselves inundated with payday lending stores on every block, and as the economic downturn put a focus on the plight of borrowers with payday loans. During a hotly contested battle in Ohio to limit payday lending, it even turned out that some lawmakers from hard-hit rural areas had themselves resorted to payday loans, experiencing the industry’s abusive practices first hand. Not surprisingly, the payday lenders lost that battle.

It’s hard to argue in favor of any industry that charges almost 400 percent interest and traps consumers with additional fees and repeated loans. But you can always count on the payday lending industry to offer outrages even beyond that, which makes the dishonesty of sudden apologists like Gutierrez even more breathtaking.

For example, The Wall Street Journal reported last year on how payday lenders specifically seek out customers among society’s most vulnerable: the elderly and disabled.

(Payday) lenders are increasingly targeting recipients of Social Security and other government benefits, including disability and veteran’s benefits. “These people always get paid, rain or shine,” says William Harrod, a former manager of payday loan stores in suburban Virginia and Washington, D.C. Government beneficiaries “will always have money, every 30 days.”

The law bars the government from sending a recipient’s benefits directly to lenders. But many of these lenders are forging relationships with banks and arranging for prospective borrowers to have their benefits checks deposited directly into bank accounts. The banks immediately transfer government funds to the lenders. The lender then subtracts debt repayments, plus fees and interest, before giving the recipients a dime.

As a result, these lenders, which pitch loans with effective annual interest as high as 400% or more, can gain almost total control over Social Security recipients’ finances.

Despite this, the industry lives to fight another day, as the Gutierrez about-face attests. It really is about the money, after all, and payday lenders always have been extremely generous with their largess. Watch the clip Mike refers to in his story, showing Gutierrez posturing in front of Jean Ann Fox, a longtime and well-respected consumer advocate who closely follows the payday lending industry. Gutierrez tries to put on a show of “reforming” the industry with his bill — but don’t believe a word of it. That’s an old tactic payday lenders use in the states as well, proposing measures they tout as “reforms” that are so filled with loopholes as to be meaningless. Their reforms are intended to draw support away from measures to limit them to charging 36 percent interest, which payday lenders contend would put them out of business.

Gutierrez should of course be ashamed of himself, but this isn’t just about him. If an industry that sinks as low as some payday lenders regularly have can gain enough respect in Congress to have Gutierrez spout such nonsense, imagine the fate of other reforms of the financial services world. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner talks a tough game when he envisions a sweeping expansion of the regulatory system. But as the Gutierrez debacle shows, even the bottom feeders of the financial industry still have enough sway to sometimes get lawmakers on their side. The disappointing comeback of payday lenders only proves that when it comes to cleaning up abusive and predatory lending, it’s far too early to get your hopes up for something real.

Discussion & Comments (0)

    Recent Articles

    • Things You Should Know about North America

      Things You Should Know about North America

      Get to know more about North America.

    • Eurovision 2010 Paula Seling Unpredictable Contest

      Eurovision 2010 Paula Seling Unpredictable Contest

      Paula Seling's experience on the Eurovision stage led her to declare that "Eurovision is an unpredictable contest". Which may explain the success of the young Lena from Germany, about whom the predictions before the event did not offer much chances for victory.

    • VIPRow.me - The Best Sports Streaming Website Today

      VIPRow.me - The Best Sports Streaming Website Today

      Have you ever contemplated creating a user-friendly site dedicated to sports-related free live streaming channels?

    • Learn How To Download, Install, And Use The Xnxubd 2022 Frame App

      Learn How To Download, Install, And Use The Xnxubd 2022 Frame App

      XNXUBD 2022 Nvidia users are able to watch thousands of videos and other contents online. XNXUBD 2022 Nvidia New is a piece of software that enables people to watch videos online without having to pay for memberships. On a graphics card, the XNXubd also provides some of the best gaming and virtual reality experiences.

    • Xvideostudio Video Editor Apk Free Download For Pc Full Version In 2022

      Xvideostudio Video Editor Apk Free Download For Pc Full Version In 2022

      A new edition of the Video Editor Apk for xVideostudio.Video Studio has all the latest features, including support for multiple video download formats in HD, FHD, and even 4K resolutions.

    • 9 Best Lotion For Masturbation - Popular Choice For 2022

      9 Best Lotion For Masturbation - Popular Choice For 2022

      Masturbation is a common activity for men and women. It's a natural and risk-free way to explore your body, experience pleasure, and release sexual tension.

    • Reasons Why You Need To Stop Watching Movies From Sflix

      Reasons Why You Need To Stop Watching Movies From Sflix

      Without having to sign up or pay anything, you can watch movies online for free with SFlix. It has more than 10,000 movies and television shows.

    • Coi Leray Mom And Dad's Family History & Wife, Explained

      Coi Leray Mom And Dad's Family History & Wife, Explained

      Coi Leray Collins (born May 11, 1997) is a rapper from the United States. Leray started publishing songs to SoundCloud in 2014, and in 2018 she released her breakthrough track "Huddy" as well as her first mixtape, Everythingcoz.

    • Listen And Download Music On MyFreeMP3 For Free

      Listen And Download Music On MyFreeMP3 For Free

      Are you in a bind and looking for a place to obtain free mp3 songs? Never again will you need to bother, since this article has everything necessary to obtain your solution. Download free music from MyfreeMP3.com, one of the world's most popular websites.