CRL in the News
Payday lenders are companies that lend customers small amounts of money at high-interest rates with the agreement that the borrower will pay that money back.
In Florida, payday lenders are preying on Black pastors and Civil Rights organizations and continue to expand their business as they hurt people. Roland Martin talks with Rev. Sekinah Hamlin, Director, Faith & Credit Roundtable with the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) about the influence of Payday Loans on African-Americans.
While many consumers choose to buy aftermarket products, they’ve also generated complaints. “Each of these products is very expensive—if you finance them through the dealership they’re marked up 100% to 150%,” said Delvin Davis, senior research associate at the Center for Responsible Lending, a nonprofit focusing on consumer finance. “A lot of times the products are put into the contract without consumers’ full knowledge and consent.”
Student loan servicers have been continually cited for a litany of abuses. First, they neglected to inform borrowers about income-based repayment, under which borrowers pay a percentage of income over 20 or 25 years, and thereafter have the balance forgiven. “The reality is that borrowers shouldn’t be in default if servicers are doing their job,” said Whitney Barkley-Denney of the Center for Responsible Lending. But over 1 million student loan defaults occurred in 2016.
“Ten years after reckless and abusive financial industry behavior caused the Great Recession, Mr. Mulvaney is throwing sand in the gears of effective consumer protection,” said Debbie Goldstein, executive vice president at the Center for Responsible Lending.
But Scott Astrada, a lobbyist for the Center for Responsible Lending – a non-profit advocacy group that participated in the talks that led to the report – said that could provide an incentive for banks to behave badly.
“If I’m not doing my job right, but if I can do it in more areas, expanding a job not being well done, doesn’t make it a better job,” Astrada said.
"I think it's important for people to know if they are being contacted or harassed by debt collectors that they have rights," said Diane Standaert. "People shouldn't be ashamed of dealing with the problem and seeking help because if something like this (in debt collection) isn't dealt with quickly it can balloon into much bigger problems down the line."
Mulvaney also advises that Congress create an independent inspector general dedicated to overseeing the CFPB. Debbie Goldstein of the Center for Responsible Lending, a financial services watchdog group, calls the suggestion “a red herring” given that the CFPB is already overseen by an inspector general that also monitors the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors.
A recent study by the Center for Responsible Lending finds nationally, for-profit colleges leave students with higher levels of debt and lower graduation rates, and often with no degree and no improvement in their job-outlook. Whitney Barkley Denney with the Center joined us in studio year to talk about their research and the need for greater state and federal protections to prevent predatory for-profit colleges from taking advantage of low-income students.