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Short-term Loan Users Have Few Complaints

Short-term Loan Users Have Few Complaints

(Dollar Photo Club)

By    |   Tuesday, 13 September 2016 07:09 AM

 

For political junkies, there is no doubt that J.D. Vance’s “Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis” is the book of the year. While most of the book describes the breakdown of the family, social structure, and work ethic in the Rust Belt, Vance gives us a peek into the thinking and mindset of those mired in decades of economic decline.

Those who have lived through this cultural decline see the world differently than most policy makers. Vance argues that government can do little to help and much to hurt those looking to climb the economic ladder.

One example of the aristocratic thinking of the Washington elites that widely differs from the reality on the ground would be the government approach to short-term lenders.

While liberal do-gooders at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) would like nothing more than to regulate short-term lenders out of business, Vance notes that short-term online lenders are a lifesaver for those with little credit history and those struggling to make ends meet.

Vance, who was lucky enough to avoid the cycle of drug addiction and other barriers to social advancement, noticed the condescending attitude of policymakers when he was an intern in the Ohio State Senate. When working for State Senator Bob Schuler, Vance recalled the Senate considering H.B. 5545, a bill which would have strangleholded the short-term loan industry out of business. The legislation set the maximum duration of loans at 31 days, all while capping loans at $500 or 25% of the borrower’s gross salary.

The Obama Administration would have assumed that someone with the impoverished background of Vance would have applauded this bill, which many thought stood up for low-income Americans by halting “exploitive” short-term online lenders right in their tracks.

But Main Street doesn’t think like Washington.

Schuler was one of only four state senators to vote against the bill, and Vance couldn’t have been more proud of his boss. Why? Because he believed that “payday lenders could solve important financial problems.”

He knows from experience that they are extremely useful for people who are struggling to make ends meet and are in need of quick cash.

Contrary to what the Obama Administration would have you believe, Vance is not alone.

The overwhelming majority of short-term loan users have nothing but positive things to say about the industry.

Early last week, a Freedom of Information Act request forced the unwilling CFPB to finally release the over 12,500 testimonials that short-term borrowers submitted to the Bureau. And guess what? The numbers show that 12,308 of them, or over 98%, demonstrate a favorable opinion of the short-term lending industry.

“Being able to get a loan for a few hundred dollars was not only easy but it was a necessity,” said one comment filed on January 19. “There are no other avenues out there that can lend money like that which are not tied to losing a valuable piece of property or giving up your car entirely. This was a great way to make it work for me.”

These testimonies were essentially love letters to the short-term loan industry. No wonder why the CFPB wanted to keep them a secret.

The empirical data is there to back up the assertions of the CFPB’s testimonials. A GSG/Tarrance survey found that 96% of short-term loan recipients believe that their loans were useful and would recommend the service to others. Similarly, another study from Harris Interactive found that 97% of short-term loan users are satisfied with their services.

In today’s stagnant economy where workforce participation has reached its lowest point since the Jimmy Carter Administration, short-term loans are needed now more than ever.

There is a clear demand and need for them, and the Obama Administration is exhibiting a ton of arrogance and ignorance for attempting to legislate them out of existence.

Perhaps if President Obama changed his unworkable fiscal policy over the past 8 years, Americans wouldn’t need to take out short-term loans -- but in today’s economy, it’s over 12 million Americans’ only recourse. 

Christopher (Chris) Versace is the editor of the newsletter The Growth & Dividend Report and is a featured columnist to The Street.com as well as a contributor to FoxBusiness.com and Forbes.com. To read more of his blogs, CLICK HERE NOW.

 

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ChrisVersace
The overwhelming majority of short-term loan users have nothing but positive things to say about the industry.
short, term, loan, pay
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2016-09-13
Tuesday, 13 September 2016 07:09 AM
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