Rules Grow, But Profits for Payday Lenders Soar

August 6, 2013
Toledo Blade 
payday lending news

Although Ohio lawmakers abolished high-cost loans in 2008, many payday loan stores still operate in the state -- some charging annual percentage rates (APRs) up to 700 percent. Lenders often exploit loopholes in the law, or react to laws against one type of loan by offering "second generation" products that still feature triple-digit APRs. In Ohio, they use a loophole by defining themselves under laws written to regulate mortgage lenders and credit repair organizations. The state Supreme Court, however, has agreed to hear a case on the use of this loophole by Cashland to determine if it is legal. Unrestrained payday loans can be highly lucrative, especially with borrowers that take out loans repeatedly. A study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau found that about 75 percent of loan fees came from borrowers who had more than 10 payday loans over a 12-month period. Because of regulatory scrutiny, however, lenders are now offering other products, such as auto title loans -- or, as in the case of Cashland parent company Cash America, a “line of credit” that works like a credit card but with a 299 percent APR.
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