In the News: “Louisiana lets payday loans flourish”

A guest column by Louisiana Budget Project director, Edward Ashworth, published in the August 21, 2011 edition of The Times-Picayune, entitled “Louisiana lets payday loans flourish,” explains how payday lenders are taking advantage of people in need, specifically in Louisiana. The article encourages putting an end to predatory lending by requiring improved tracking and reporting and by strengthening regulation of the payday lending industry.

Here is an excerpt:

Payday lenders prey on the working poor. Their siren song of “easy money” lures those living paycheck-to-paycheck and who face a financial emergency. . .

. . .Louisiana has one of the country’s highest concentrations of payday lenders. That makes sense. Louisiana has the country’s second-highest poverty rate. What doesn’t make sense is the lack of oversight or regulation, which allows payday lenders to take advantage of people in need. . .

. . .Louisiana needs to put an end to this legalized usury. Seventeen states – including Arkansas, Georgia, and North Carolina – have effectively banned payday lending through APR caps, enforcement of usury laws and stricter regulation.

View the full column and report.

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