- Is the Death Knell Sounding for Payday Lenders?
ConsumerAffairs.com (CA) 07 Oct 2013
Consumer advocates and regulators have long complained about the payday loan industry, saying that the small loans -- which carry high fees and often must be repaid in full in about two weeks -- trap borrowers in a cycle of debt. The Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) has been lobbying to curb the business on a national level, and it believes a sea change is underway.
- Debt After Death: Chase Pulls Plug on Credit Card Insurance Plan
Los Angeles Times 07 Oct 2013
Chase bank has announced that it will end its Payment Protector plan in May. The option allowed credit card holders to insure themselves against job loss, illness, or disability -- with payments deferred for up to two years
- Delinquencies Fall at the GSEs
Housing Wire 07 Oct 2013
Preventative measures taken by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac saved 117,000 homes from foreclosure in the second quarter of the year, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reports.
- Consumer Agency Fines Payment Processor Meracord Over Debt-Relief Firms' Illegal Fees
Washington Post 04 Oct 2013
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has fined Meracord, one of the country's largest payment-processing companies, $1.3 million for helping debt-relief firms levy illegal upfront fees on struggling consumers. According to the regulator, Meracord processed at least $11 million in illicit fees from October 2010 to July of this year. Of more than 11,000 consumers who paid the upfront charges, almost 5,000 of them did not have any of their debts resolved.
- Study: Debit Swipe Fee Reform Saves Consumers, Merchants Billions
Bank Credit News 04 Oct 2013
Reform of debit-card swipe fees helped save U.S. merchants and consumers billions of dollars in 2012, according to a report released by the Merchant Payments Coalition (MPC). This was one of the objectives when Congress passed the law in 2010.
- Fannie Plans DU System Updates to Correctly Document Pre-Foreclosures
Housing Wire 04 Oct 2013
Fannie Mae is in the process of upgrading Desktop Underwriter (DU), its automated underwriting system, to ensure that lenders have sufficient flexibility during the underwriting process to approve borrowers who accidentally end up with a foreclosure on their credit report.
- Check-Cashing Ordinance
Signal Tribune (CA) 04 Oct 2013
City councilors serving Long Beach, Calif., voted last month to approve an ordinance that establishes new definitions and regulations for financial services providers that include check-cashing businesses, payday lenders, and auto title lenders. The measure prohibits new short-term lenders from locating within 1,320 feet of any other such business in neighborhood-commercial, pedestrian-oriented, planned-development, and industrial-zoning districts.
- New Tactics Keep College Kids Hooked on Plastic
CNBC News 04 Oct 2013
Since passage of the Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009, use of credit cards among college students has declined. Debit cards, however, are becoming more common and now are used by nearly 80 percent of students, a survey by Sallie Mae and Ipsos found. Many student ID cards double as debit cards, and prepaid cards are gaining popularity among parents who want to better control their kids' spending. The problem with prepaid and debit cards is that they do not allow students to build a credit record, and they often come with fewer marketing restrictions.
- TurboTax Maker Settles Usury Claims for $6.55M
Courthouse News Service 03 Oct 2013
U.S. District Judge Edward Davila approved a $6.55 million settlement of two class-action lawsuits that claim Intuit's free edition of TurboTax included usurious "quadruple-digit interest rates."
- CFPB Should Take Tougher Stance Against Credit Cards, Consumer Groups Say
American Banker 03 Oct 2013
Consumer advocates have asked that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) take an even harder line with credit card issuers. At a field hearing in Chicago after the watchdog released its study on the impact of card regulations over the last four years, advocates urged the regulator not to leave its scrutiny at simply sneaky rate hikes and fees but to delve deeper into legal disclosures.
- Car Problems Top National Consumer Complaint List
Cache Valley Daily (UT) 03 Oct 2013
Automobile-related issues were the top consumer complaint for 2012, according to a report by the Consumer Federation of America (CFA). Among the problems cited were towing disputes and false advertising for new and used cars, confirmed CFA director of consumer protection Susan Grant.
- Arkansas AG Sues Online Payday Lenders
Associated Press 02 Oct 2013
Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel is suing companies that he says worked together to offer illegal payday loans online.
- Ohio Court of Appeals Affirms Class Certification in Lawsuit Against FirstMerit Bank Related to Bank’s Unfair and Deceptive Overdraft Fee Practices
National Law Review 02 Oct 2013
The Ohio Court of Appeals largely affirmed the class certification of a case brought by consumers who claim FirstMerit Bank improperly charged overdraft fees.
- New York to Sue Wells Fargo Over Mortgage Settlement
New York Times DealBook Blog 02 Oct 2013
New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman is preparing to take Wells Fargo to court for disregarding the terms of 2012's multibillion-dollar settlement to end foreclosure abuses.
- Reverse-Mortgage Program Takes a Hit
Wall Street Journal 02 Oct 2013
A federal judge on Sept. 30 handed down a decision that could potentially increase losses under FHA's reverse mortgage program.
- U.S.: Bank Charged Minorities Higher Rate
Washington Post 02 Oct 2013
Capital One is the latest in a string of financial institutions to settle allegations of unfair lending, with a deal to pay $2.85 million in damages. Its 2009 acquisition of Chevy Chase Bank led to a review of financial records, which exposed the bias against black and Latino mortgage borrowers at Chevy Chase since 2006.
- Bank Credit-Card Fees Face New Scrutiny by U.S. Consumer Bureau
Bloomberg 02 Oct 2013
The Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009 limited lenders' ability to hike interest rates, curtailed late fees, and forced lenders to obtain customers' consent to apply over-limit fees. The law produced $4 billion in savings to U.S. consumers last year through these impacts, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which calculated that the total cost of credit on the cards is down by two percentage points.
- Employers Can't Force Debit Cards on Their Workers
CNBC.com 02 Oct 2013
While many employers prefer to distribute wages on a prepaid debit card, also known as a payroll card, they cannot force employees to receive their wages this way. In a letter to some of the largest U.S. employers, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) reminded them of the law and warned that the agency will use enforcement power to stop violations.
- Fla. Force-Placed Settlement Overcomes Challenge from Rival Calif. Plaintiffs
PropertyCasualty360 02 Oct 2013
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Frederico Moreno granted preliminary approval for a force-placed insurance (FPI) lawsuit against J.P. Morgan Chase, and set a final fairness hearing for February 2014. The deal could be worth $300 million to 1.3 million homeowners nationwide
- Lenders Warn Dealers About Bias
Automotive News 02 Oct 2013
Auto lenders have been sending letters to dealerships to inform them that many of their practices suggest a pattern of discrimination against minorities, women, or the elderly.