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Press Releases

May 17, 2016
New research from the Center for Responsible Lending finds that every year, $8 billion in fees is lost to one of two types of small-dollar, predatory lending: payday and car-title loans. Usually sold to consumers with average incomes of approximately $25,000, these loans may have different names; but both charge triple-digit interest rates that generate the bulk of their debt trap fees. These fees leave most borrowers renewing rather than retiring the loans. The new report is the first update since 2013 that tracks fees charged state-by-state to these two predatory products. These billion-...
May 12, 2016
High costs, low graduation rates, and complaints trigger CRL analysis As higher education costs continue to rise, new research by the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) analyzes the debts and outcomes resulting from a wide-ranging choice of institutions – both public and private nonprofits and for-profit colleges located in North Carolina. NC Student Loan Calculus found that choices in higher education can either be a boost or a burden to students and their families. "When borrowers who attend public and private colleges leave school," states the report, "they can afford to repay...
May 11, 2016
Google, a leading global search engine, today announced that it would no longer accept advertising for payday loans. Terming the development as an ‘update to its financial services policy', the decision will end many of its prominent online ads. Until now, these ads appeared even in states that have banned payday lending's triple-digit interest rates. Google's action also precedes a long-awaited regulation from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) as to how small-dollar lending will operate in the marketplace. In response, Keith Corbett, Center for Responsible Lending...
May 5, 2016
Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced a proposed rule that will limit the financial industry’s use of forced arbitration, a practice used to block consumers from enforcing their legal rights. In response, Mike Calhoun, President of the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), issued the following statement: This proposed rule is another key development in bringing transparency and fairness to consumer finance. While it does not end all forced arbitration, it does return the opportunity for class actions to be heard and argued in a court of law. By...
May 2, 2016
A new survey finds that Colorado voters strongly oppose the idea of raising interest rates on consumer loans. Opposition was widespread among voters across lines of race, party affiliation, and household income, but the intensity of opposition was especially strong among voters of color and those who had served in the military. Overall, 51% of voters said they would be "much more likely" to vote against a legislator who voted to increase interest rates. That number rose to 58% of military service-members or veterans, and 62% of non-whites. At issue are consumer loans that typically range...
April 20, 2016
Today the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released a new report that proves how high-cost fees on small-dollar loan create rather than resolve financial challenges for borrowers. An 18-month analysis of loans made by more than 330 payday lenders found that half of all borrowers—nearly 10,000—were charged an average of $185 in bank penalties, hidden costs usually in the form of overdraft or nonsufficient fund fees – or both. Repeated attempts by lenders to collect failed 70 percent of the time, but racked up substantial additional fees nonetheless. Involuntary bank account...
April 14, 2016
Center for Responsible Lending, and Groups Nationwide Tell CFPB: Beware Same Old Predators in Different Clothing The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s efforts to rein in the worst abuses of traditional, two-week payday lending schemes must not leave the door open to longer-term loan products that are similarly predatory debt-traps by design, nearly 150 consumer advocacy and civil rights groups representing thousands of Americans in more than 45 states told Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray in a hand-delivered letter. At issue is a new rule the CFPB is...
April 14, 2016
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced today a new loan modification program that will help borrowers stay in their homes. Under the new program, loan modifications will be available to as many as 30,000 qualified underwater borrowers facing financial hardship with loans now held by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Eligibility also requires that the mortgages have an unpaid principal balance of not more than $250,000 and delinquency of 90 days or longer as of March 1 of this year. Homes must be owner-occupied. Additionally, FHFA will require third party buyers of Fannie and Freddie’...
April 5, 2016
Today the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs convened a hearing to assess the effects of Consumer Finance Regulation. Mike Calhoun, President of the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) offered comments for the committee's record and issued the following statement. In a display of legislative wisdom, Congress created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) with its enactment of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The two were necessary remedies to heal the financial wounds wrought by 8.2 million families who lost their homes to...
April 4, 2016
Study confirms urgent need to curtail debt-collection abuses Washington, DC – New research from the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) shows that strong debt-collection reforms do not restrict credit availability. Despite claims from the debt-collection industry, CRL analysis of data from North Carolina and Maryland – two states with recent debt-collection reforms – establishes that there was no sign of any negative impact to consumer credit. Unfair debt-collection practices undermine financial security, especially in low-income communities and households of color, hindering...

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