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Consumer advocate: Predatory lending still 'major problem' in Arizona

Consumers nationwide have submitted nearly 10,000 complaints with the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau about short-term consumer loans they believed were unfair, according to a recent analysis conducted by the Arizona PIRG Education Fund. The complaints were submitted over the past two and a half years.... Read more»

Proposed limits on payday loans draw sharp reactions from both sides

Federal officials unveiled new restrictions on payday lenders Thursday that aim to help low-income borrowers avoid the “debt traps” of readily available, high-interest loans that critics say prey on minority communities.... Read more»1

Critics warn that quick holiday cash could lead to spiraling debt

The commercials and online ads for auto title loans make them appear especially enticing during the holiday season when many families need extra cash, but the high interest rates are pushing many into deeper debt.... Read more»1

When lenders sue, quick cash can turn into a lifetime of debt

High-cost loans already come with annual interest rates ranging from about 30 percent to 400 percent or more. In some states, if a suit results in a judgment – the typical outcome – the debt can then continue to accrue at a high interest rate. In Missouri, there are no limits on such rates.... Read more»2

Six federal agencies investigating online payday lenders

At least six federal agencies including the Justice and Treasury departments are coordinating a broad probe of online payday lenders that charge enormous interest and fees to low-income borrowers who need quick cash.... Read more»

On victory drive, soldiers defeated by debt

Seven years after Congress banned payday-loan companies from charging exorbitant interest rates to service members, many of the nation's military bases are surrounded by storefront lenders who charge high annual percentage rates, sometimes exceeding 400 percent. ... Read more»

The 182% loan: Installment lenders put borrowers in world of hurt

Installment loans have been around for decades. While payday loans are usually due in a matter of weeks, installment loans get paid back in installments over time — a few months to a few years. Both types of loans are marketed to the same low-income consumers, and both can trap borrowers in a cycle of recurring, deceptively expensive loans.... Read more»1

Latinos face cultural, structural barriers in building wealth

75 percent of Mexican immigrants – legal and illegal – don't have bank accounts. A lack of legal identification, a history of mistrusting banks in their home country and the perceived complexities of banking in another language keep many outside the financial system, with long-term effects.... Read more»

Guest opinion

Goddard: Payday lenders out of town after sunset

Arizona's law authorizing high-interest payday loans is scheduled to expire on June 30. In anticipation of this date, I have set up "Operation Sunset" to pursue and prosecute payday lenders who attempt to evade the ban on payday loans.... Read more»

Profiting from recession

Payday lenders spend big to fight regulation

The influential $42 billion-a-year payday lending industry, thriving from a surge in emergency loans to people struggling through the recession, is pouring record sums into lobbying, campaign contributions, and public relations – and getting results.... Read more»