Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Kansas Activist: 'Banks Try to Limit Choices'

Glenda Overstreet, an active volunteer in Topeka, Kansas, railed against bank efforts to limit financial choice in her state. She urged her fellow citizens to stand up for themselves.

Overstreet says she's not anti-bank, but notes anything that suppresses the consumer's right to choice is of deep concern.
"Don't get me wrong--I'm not against banks because I also use them. I'm against any effort that would restrict freedom of choice because I believe competition keeps companies focused on ensuring quality customer service."

She urges readers to contact state lawmakers to make their views known.
"Those whom I have visited with on this issue believe many banks, with the exception of a few, don't meet the needs of the community when it comes to providing financial alternatives for small-business loans, emergency personal loans or financial matters that help meet low-income or working poor challenges."

Read the entire post "Glenda Overstreet: Banks try to limit choices."

1 comment:

Bruce said...

Pay Day Loan Mis-Information

Category: News and Politics

I recently read a Reuters news article, written by Nick Carey, Mar 23rd, 8:15pm ET, titled, "’Pay day’ loans exacerbate housing crisis". I would like to clarify that there are some great inaccuracies and bias in this story that really must be pointed out.

I have had extensive experience with pay day loans, and, though I agree that the APR (annual percentage rate) is quite high, and people can get into trouble when they do not use these loans as they are designed to be used, this news report highly exhagerates the cost of a loan. Read from the article as follows;

"A pay day loan is typically for a few hundred dollars, with a term of two weeks, and an interest rate as high as 800 percent. The average borrower ends up paying back $793 for a $325 loan, according to the Center."

This is not accurate! And there was much more inaccuracy than this in the article.

A pay day loan from a legitimate financial retailer generally costs about $15 for every $100 up to $500. This means that for a loan of $100 for 15 days the charge will be $15, totalling the loan at $115, which must be quoted as an APR of 365%. the actual total pay off for a $300 loan is $345.

In reality it is only a fee that is being paid, not interest. However, government regulations require that it be quoted as interest, as an APR.

The only way that a short-term loan, a pay day loan, could build up to the absorbitent amount qouted in the news story, is if the loan were to be "rolled over", which is highly illegal in nearly every state that regulates these loans, so, thus, it would be highly improbable that there would be an average of borrowers that pay such amounts.

Pay day loans are for exactly what they are named. A short term small loan to be paid off by the next pay date of the borrower.

These loans have saved many a borrower, in a temporary financial pinch, to pay some bill(s), from much harsher penalties and costs that are incurred by banks and credit institutions if checks do not clear or payments are late.

The proper use of a pay day loan actually shows a personal and professional level of responsibility when it is used properly.

Yes, people do mis-use these loans, people get into trouble, people borrow beyond their means, and there are less than savory lendors who do not do what is right in order to avoid such disasters for their borrowers.

Pay day lendors must exercise great responsibility to protect borrowers and potential borrowers from becoming victims of borrowing beyond their means. That might even mean turning down a less than able and questionably qualified customer from borrowing.

I am disturbed to also hear lawmakers and politicians who are buying into mis-information and threaten the reasonable management and existence of a very useful and helpful service to many people.

Bruce - Washington