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December 2006

2006 in review: EZCORP

December 28, 2006 - Austin, Texas

Ah, the value of hindsight. Had we all known in January what we know today, we could have tripled our money in pawnshop operator and payday lender EZCORP, which started the year at around a share and trades today at more than .

2006 in review: Cash America

December 28, 2006 - Fort Worth, Texas

It was a year for pawnshops and payday lenders to branch out beyond their normal boundaries as their traditional lines of business came under legal and regulatory assault.

Widen payday loan limits

December 28, 2006 - Austin, Texas

Last September, Congress passed a law that limits the rate of interest that can be charged on a loan to members of the U.S. military and their families to 36 percent.

Jones defends cash advance businesses

December 28, 2006 - Cleveland, Tennessee

Cleveland, Tn.'s Allan Jones, chairman and CEO of Check Into Cash, Inc., is taking issue with the recent attack on the industry by the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL).

Illinois' payday loan problem is far from over

December 27, 2006 - Tinley Park, Illinois

It seems as though some things never change when it comes to payday lending in Illinois. As soon as Illinois enacted law that makes payday loans a more affordable solution for people who need them, the payday loan industry got greedy.

Critics want to curb payday loans

December 26, 2006 - Olympia, Washington

Aaron Medres is on a mission. Four years years ago, the Chattaroy truck driver took out a $500 payday loan to cover some unexpected repairs to his car. Two weeks later, to pay back the $500 and the $75 fee, he took out another loan from a different lender. And then another.

Who would span the payday lending gap?

December 17, 2006 - Richmond, Virginia

Five years ago, tellers at State Employees' Credit Union in North Carolina noticed a different group of people coming in to cash checks: payday lenders with checks written by members of the Raleigh-based credit union.

Montana officials push for more 'payday' loan regulation: industry protests

December 15, 2006 - Great Falls, Montana

Some of Montana's poorest consumers fall victim to lending services that charge exorbitant interest rates for payday or title loans and get trapped in debt, says Attorney General Mike McGrath.

Payday Mayday: The law should treat adults as adults

December 13, 2006 - Seattle, Washington

Beginning Oct. 1, 2007, no U.S. lender may charge more than 36-percent interest to a military person on active duty, or his family: a measure Congress aimed principally at protecting soldiers from payday loans.

Regulate, don't ban, state's payday lenders

December 13, 2006 - Concord, New Hampshire

Payday lenders are storefront shops that give customers small, no-collateral loans for a fee and a promise to pay the money back in a week or two. They used to be a sign of a big city. High-interest lenders require a steady supply of people who live paycheck to paycheck.

Legislator targets payday lenders

December 11, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

A Wichita legislator wants to place a cap on the interest charged by payday and car title loan stores -- an annual rate that is currently as high as 390 percent a year.

Lawmakers urge payday loan alternatives

December 8, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Two months after Congress approved a cap on loan interest rates for service members, lawmakers are urging financial institutions to look for ways to make affordable small loans available to all consumers, not just the military community.

Payday loan profits may be limited

December 6, 2006 - Vancouver, Washington

Washington state Rep. Sherry Appleton expects a different outcome this legislative session when she introduces two bills that could drastically curtail profits for payday lenders.

Payday loan measure killed in committee

December 6, 2006 - Richmond, Virginia

A House committee yesterday killed a bill that would have banned payday lending in Virginia. But the bill's sponsor says he's going to reintroduce it for the 2007 legislative session that starts next month, where it will compete with other bills that are expected to add regulations to the industry but not ban it altogether.

FiSCA press release blasts CRL study critical of payday loan industry

December 4, 2006 - Hackensack, New Jersey

The Financial Service Centers of America (FiSCA) today strongly criticized a recent report, titled 'Financial Quicksand,' issued by the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) which attacked the payday loan industry.

Avoid the loan sharks

December 4, 2006 - Alexandria, Virginia

You may have seen commercials on television offering unsecured loans to anyone needing money. These ads tend to focus on two things: how much money you can get, and how quickly you can get it. Lost in the fine print is the important information, including the interest rate and repayment schedule for the loan.

November 2006

'Marketplace' on payday loans: 'Trapped in Financial Quicksand'

November 30, 2006 - Chicago, Illinois

American Public Media's news program Marketplace (heard nationally on NPR) tonight ran a segment highlighting the Center for Responsible Lending's new report about payday loans titled 'Financial Quicksand.'

Payday loans have pitfalls

November 25, 2006 - Mason City, Iowa

Five days until payday can be a long time when the rent is due and you don't have enough money to pay it. For some families, payday loan businesses come to the rescue. The check doesn't bounce and the landlord's late rent fee is avoided.

Report blasts payday lenders

November 25, 2006 - Sterling, Illinois

A new report is warning money-strapped Christmas shoppers not to be tempted by offers for fast cash this holiday season, or they could end up with a very unhappy New Year.

'Dan Rather Reports' criticizes payday loan industry

November 23, 2006 - Alton, Illinois

Dan Rather's news program 'Dan Rather Reports' this week featured the hour-long program 'The Best Congress Money Can Buy.' Appearing on the HDNet network (Rather's new home), the show contained a lengthy negative segment about the payday loan industry and its lobbying activities.

Organization cites payday lender actions

November 22, 2006 - Mountain Home, Arkansas

An advocacy group working to reform Arkansas law on payday lending practices has alleged two Mountain Home stores offer loans larger than allowed by state law.

Payday loan limits are long past due

November 22, 2006 - Eugene, Oregon

The apologists for the payday and car-title lenders that exploit the poorest, most vulnerable Oregonians have long insisted there's no real problem with lenders charging more than 500 percent interest on short-term loans.

Oregon: Report sparks interest in tightening payday loan rules

November 21, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

More than 100 Oregonians lost their cars, and 104,000 had problems repaying after borrowing money from payday and car title lenders last year, a state agency reports.

South Dakota senator wants second look at payday loan cap

November 17, 2006 - Pierre, South Dakota

A coalition of military and consumer groups that persuaded Congress to impose a 36 percent interest-rate cap on payday loans to military members and their families is gearing up to fight the whole issue all over again.

Dollar Financial acquires 23 Florida payday loan stores

November 17, 2006 - Berwyn, Pennsylvania

Dollar Financial Corp expanded its Florida operations by acquiring 23 financial services stores this month, predominantly located in Southwest Florida. Dollar has not released the name of the acquired locations, but said the total purchase price for the acquisition was $28.6 million.

Payday lenders face calls for increased legislation

November 16, 2006 - Seattle, Washington

They're the last resort for thousands of people strapped for cash. . . . State lawmakers are working on bills to lower the rates and give consumers more protection, but the concern is over much more than just high rates.

Ohio credit unions provide alternative to payday lenders

November 15, 2006 - Dayton, Ohio

Getting into debt is easy; removing oneself from debt is an uphill battle that many people will lose. One major reason for this is the position they are put in by predatory payday lenders, according to the creators of StretchPay, a new program at many Ohio credit unions that offers small loans without the compiling high interest rates of many predatory storefront lenders.

Predatory loans rob from the poor

November 15, 2006 - Springfield, Missouri

It was about five years ago that I opened a very unusual letter. It was from a local Baptist pastor who was asking me to write a column about the payday and car title loan businesses springing up around town.

Arkansas fines payday lender $173,050

November 15, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

Arkansas' regulator of payday lenders on Tuesday ordered a Conway businessman to pay more than $217,000 in fines and refunds to customers for operating stores without a license.

Credit union offers payday lending alternative

November 14, 2006 - Las Vegas, Nevada

When officials at Nevada Federal Credit Union found out a quarter of its members frequented payday loan businesses when running short on cash, they decided it was time to offer an alternative.

Payday lender QC Financial Services faces class-action lawsuit

November 10, 2006 - Kansas City, Missouri

A class-action lawsuit alleges that payday lender QC Financial Services Inc. of Overland Park violated Missouri law by engaging in predatory practices such as renewing loans multiple times.

The truth behind payday loans

November 8, 2006 - Beverly Hills, California

There is a lot being said about payday loans. Many claim that the interest rates charged are outrageous. Others say that they are the only source of finance available for those with less than perfect credit score. There is a bit of truth in both claims but there is much more to payday loans than meets the eyes.

Internet payday lenders targeted

November 8, 2006 - Charleston, South Carolina

Jeannette Hartman of Clarksburg is a consumer who got caught up in payday lending. In her case, it was with lenders who operate on the Internet.

Professors' research sparks payday loan reforms

November 4, 2006 - Gainesville, Florida

Payday loan companies, which often charge annual interest rates well into the triple digits, cluster around military bases, according to a study co-authored by University of Florida associate law professor Christopher Peterson.

Hot line helps Tucsonans avoid predatory lenders

November 4, 2006 - Tucson, Arizona

Considering taking out a payday loan or refinancing a mortgage through a company that advertised in the mail? Call (520) 792-3087 first. That's the number of the 'Don't Borrow Trouble' hot line, a new Pima County service that aims to steer Tucsonans away from predatory lenders and assist those who have already become involved with such lenders.

Illinois fines payday lenders $500,000 in 10 months

November 1, 2006 - Springfield, Illinois

The state of Illinois has fined payday lenders operating in the state over $500,000 since the Payday Loan Reform Act (PLRA) went into effect in December, 2005. Governor Blagojevich signed the Monsignor Egan Payday Loan Reform Act in June, 2005.

October 2006

Blagojevich's payday lending reforms save Illinois borrowers $6.4 million

October 31, 2006 - Chicago, Illinois

Governor Rod R. Blagojevich announced today that the Payday Loan Reform Act (PLRA) he signed into law last year has helped thousands of Illinois borrowers save $6.4 million in loan fees and interest charges in just ten months.

Credit unions find niches

October 29, 2006 - Madison, Wisconsin

Through programs aimed at youth and immigrants, credit unions in Wisconsin are carving out a niche to serve groups that might not be highly targeted customers at other financial institutions.

State's only payday lender leaves the area

October 27, 2006 - Charleston, West Virginia

The only payday lender in West Virginia has left the state. First American Cash Advance pulled out of West Virginia sometime in July, Deputy Attorney General Jill Miles said today.

Oklahoma consumers warned about solicitations for online loans

October 26, 2006 - Ardmore, Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Department of Consumer Credit is warning Oklahoma residents about online solictations from out-of-state payday loan companies and other financial services.

Credit union to offer cheaper alternative to payday loans

October 24, 2006 - Tucson, Arizona

The interest rates might reach 460 percent, but MesaCAN clients often tell the nonprofit's executive director, Pat Gilbert, that payday loan stores are what keeps them afloat.

PLS payday loan store donates $18,000 to schools

October 22, 2006 - Chicago, Illinois

PLS Payday Loan Store locations in Alabama, Arizona, California, Illinois, Mississippi, and Wisconsin donated a total of $18,000 to community schools. The donations were part of a Back to School promotion, in which customers nominated local schools to receive $200 donations.

Advance America gives $50,000 to United Way to fund financial literacy programs

October 20, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Advance America Cash Advance Centers, the nation's largest provider of short-term, unsecured loans, today awarded a $50,000 Advance America Financial Literacy Grant to United Way of the Piedmont to support financial literacy efforts in Spartanburg and Union counties.

President caps payday loan rates to military personnel at 36 percent

October 18, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

President Bush signed the 2007 National Defense Authorization Act Tuesday. The Act includes an interest rate cap of 36 percent for payday loans made to military personnel.

Limit need, not loan shops

October 14, 2006 - Tempe, Arizona

Mesa may soon join Tempe in regulating how far apart payday loan shops may be situated. This is a tempting but not necessarily good idea.

Retired colonel slams Barron, loan business

October 11, 2006 - Huntsville, Alabama

For a man without a dog in the fight, retired Army Col. Tom Brown uses fighting words. Even though he said he isn't campaigning for anyone, Brown held three news conferences Tuesday across North Alabama to criticize state Sen. Lowell Barron, D-Fyffe, for owning payday loan businesses which may have caused financial hardship to soldiers.

Payday loan firms feeling the pinch

October 7, 2006 - Detroit, Michigan

With Michigan's economy in the tank - thousands of unemployed factory workers and underemployed service workers are looking for jobs and many people are struggling to pay their bills - you might expect business to be booming at payday loan centers.

Virginia delegates push payday loan reforms

October 7, 2006 - Fredericksburg, Virginia

When a Marine at Quantico Marine Corps Base couldn't pay off his $500 payday loan by the next payday, he kept extending it for a year and a half.

September 2006

Banks waver, CUs step up with payday loan choices

September 29, 2006 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania banks shied away from the state's effort to provide loans to high-risk borrowers victimized by exorbitant rates on payday loans. But credit unions stepped up to fill the void, said the state Treasurer's Office.

Arkansas delegation supports payday loan interest cap

September 29, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

Members of Arkansas' congressional delegation said Friday that America has a responsibility to protect military service members and their families from predatory loans.

Payday lending cultivates legislative support for comeback

September 28, 2006 - Greensboro, North Carolina

As 2005 gave way to the new year, the NC Banking Commission handed down a decision shuttering the state's largest payday lending company; a little more than two months later Attorney General Roy Cooper announced a settlement with three others that would result in the industry for all practical purposes halting operations in North Carolina.

Davis now supports loan caps

September 26, 2006 - Lexington, Kentucky

U.S. Rep. Geoff Davis, R-Ky., is backing a proposal to cap high interest rates for short-term payday loans to military service members at 36 percent, a spokesman said yesterday. The decision follows a week of attacks from an opponent and constituents for his previous opposition to the plan.

Payday loan industry grows in state

September 25, 2006 - Denver, Colorado

The number of Coloradans borrowing money from sub-prime lenders increased last year, according to data released Monday by the Colorado attorney general's office.

Advocacy group wants more limits on payday loan establishments

September 25, 2006 - Meridian, Mississippi

David B. Miller is a staff attorney with the Mississippi Center for Justice. An Editorial Board guest of The Meridian Star last week, he discussed the group's concerns over payday loan establishments and its upcoming legislative agenda.

Advance America to stop providing payday loans to military personnel

September 25, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Advance America, Cash Advance Centers will, in the company's words, 'respectfully and voluntarily refrain from making any payday advances to active, full-time members of the military effective October 15, 2006 except where strictly prohibited from doing so by applicable law.'

Columnist revisits state's payday loan policy

September 22, 2006 - Hattiesburg, Mississippi

Throughout the country, payday loans make up the newest and fastest-growing form of short-term lending. There are nearly 1,200 payday lenders in Mississippi. Payday lenders stress they are providing a needed service not available at traditional financial institutions.

The Payday Mayday: Faith communities join to curb predator practices

September 22, 2006 - Richmond, Virginia

Predatory lending is not new. During biblical times, abusive lending practices were addressed by instituting strict standards, including banning the charge of interest to the poor (Exodus 22:25). Likewise, in the story of Zaccheaus (Luke 19:8-9), Jesus commended him for promising to repay the excessive fees he had exacted from the oppressed.

Lawmakers agree on 36 percent payday loan cap

September 21, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Congressional negotiators have decided that protecting military paychecks is more important than jurisdictional squabbles, and have agreed to include a 36 percent cap on loan interest rates and fees in the 2007 defense authorization bill.

Congressman Davis touts his payday loan proposal

September 20, 2006 - Frankfort, Kentucky

Northern Kentucky Congressman Geoff Davis, who has become embroiled in a debate over limiting predatory lending practices, says his proposal goes further than the 'knee-jerk reaction' amendment he opposes.

Cash America clicks with payday loans

September 19, 2006 - Fort Worth, Texas

With state legislatures and the federal government cracking down on the payday loan industry, such lenders are coming up with new, creative ways to extend their business. Last month, First Cash Financial acquired a chain of used car dealerships. Now Cash America is extending its reach online by completing the purchase of CashNetUSA, a privately held online payday lender.

Breaking the cycle of the payday loan 'trap'

September 19, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Tellers at the North Carolina State Employees' Credit Union noticed a troubling change several years ago: The first people in line on payday were high-cost lenders, waiting to cash checks from credit union members.

Cash America completes acquisition of CashNetUSA

September 18, 2006 - Fort Worth, Texas

Cash America International, Inc. announced today that it has completed the purchase of substantially all of the assets of CashNetUSA. The acquisition, which was announced in mid-July, establishes a significant internet distribution channel for the Company to provide short-term cash advances to its customers. CashNetUSA has emerged as a leader in the online cash advance business since its entry into the market in early 2004. Today CashNetUSA serves customers in 27 states and will now complement Cash America's 758 lending locations.

Senators consider payday loan limits, criticize industry

September 16, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Supporters of the payday lending industry petitioned members of the Senate on Thursday to block proposed limits on short-term loans to troops, saying the Defense Department is overreacting to the problems of a small number of servicemembers.

Credit unions offer payday loan alternative

September 15, 2006 - Fayetteville, North Carolina

The federal government is looking at ways to protect soldiers from predatory payday loans that charge high interest rates. North Carolina has already cracked down on lenders, so local credit unions are now offering alternatives.

Testimony: Defense Department predatory lending report seriously flawed

September 14, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Following is the statement of Hilary B. Miller, President, Payday Loan Bar Association, regarding predatory lending practices directed at members of the armed forces and their dependents before the Senate Committee on banking, housing and urban affairs.

Loan disagreement

September 14, 2006 - Scottsboro, Alabama

Alabama State Senator Lowell Barron (D-Fyffe), a former owner or co-owner of at least 20 payday loan businesses across the state, says he will introduce legislation designed to protect consumers and regulate the companies during the next legislative session.

Barron touts reform of payday loan industry

September 14, 2006 - Huntsville, Alabama

State Sen. Lowell Barron, once a major owner of payday loan outlets, says he just got out of the business and is now planning legislation to regulate it. Barron, D-Fyffe, outlined his reform plans this week in a meeting with Times editors and reporters.

Keeping poor people in their place

September 13, 2006 - Cushing, Oklahoma

It is a fact of economic life in the Hobbesian world of capitalism that as the number of people mired in poverty increases so do the scum that prey upon them. Both those in poverty and their predators have skyrocketed in the Bush years.

Payday lender plan could nix profit from military

September 13, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Payday lenders, facing legislation they say could drive them out of business, offered the Pentagon a plan that would eliminate the profit they make in the military market but could keep Congress from setting a nationwide cap on loan rates to troops.

Military looks to change laws regarding payday loans

September 12, 2006 - Portales, New Mexico

Concerns over payday loans have military leaders looking for legal changes in the lending system. Charles Brown, a former airman at Cannon Air Force Base, said he found himself in financial trouble when using payday loans became a vicious cycle in his life.

Governor puts end to payday lending operations in nursing homes

September 12, 2006 - Springfield, Missouri

Gov. Matt Blunt announced this morning that nursing homes will no longer be allowed to run on-site payday loan operations to lend money to nursing homes' employees.

Advance America buying back stock

September 12, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, prides itself on offering quick cash solutions to borrowers in need. Lately, the Spartanburg-based payday lender also has offered cash to its shareholders: up to 150 million dollars in the form of two stock buybacks.

On payday, many GIs pay back

September 10, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Six months ago, John Elliott, a sailor based at Norfolk Naval Station, was having trouble keeping up with his bills, so he went looking for a quick source of cash to tide him over. He took out what's known as a payday loan, borrowing against future paychecks in exchange for money on the spot.

[Press Release] - TranDotCom Solutions prepares for continued growth by strengthening its management team

September 9, 2006 - Kennesaw, Georgia

TranDotCom Solutions, a leading provider of transaction management software, announced today the promotions of two key executives, as well as an addition to its management team. TranDotCom Solutions has enjoyed high double digit percentage growth over the past 6 years and continues to align itself as an industry leader.

Payday lenders easy to find

September 8, 2006 - Jackson, Mississippi

Per capita, Mississippi ranks third in the nation in the number of check cashing/cash advance outlets, commonly referred to as payday lenders, according to the Mississippi Center for Justice.

California Department of Corporations orders online payday loan stores to stop lending in state

September 8, 2006 - Sacramento, California

California Department of Corporations (DOC) has brought enforcement actions against four online stores that offer 'pay day loans,' on the ground that the stores have not been licensed in California.

Legislature should look at payday industry

September 8, 2006 - Hattiesburg, Mississippi

Drive down any city street and bet on spotting an establishment that repulses somebody. . . . The latest type of business under that kind of microscope is the storefront operation known most commonly as a payday loan store.

Talent renews push for cap on payday loan interest rates

September 7, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Sen. Jim Talent on Thursday renewed his push for legislation to stop payday loan companies from targeting military personnel.

Lending the poor a helping hand

September 7, 2006 - Birmingham, Alabama

A loan is a loan is a loan? Not exactly. There are regular loans governed by Alabama's Small Loan Act, which caps interest rates, depending on the amount borrowed, at either 24 or 36 percent a year.

Governor Blagojevich calls on Congress to pass federal payday lending protections for military personnel

September 7, 2006 - Chicago, Illinois

As Congress reconvenes this week, Governor Rod R. Blagojevich called on the chairmen and ranking members of the Department of Defense Reauthorization conference committee to protect members of the military and their families from the predatory practices of payday loan stores.

Utah lawmakers consider limiting payday loans to military

September 5, 2006 - Hill Air Force Base, Utah

State lawmakers may be calling for restrictions on loans made to military personnel following a recently released Department of Defense report that calls the payday loan industry harmful to the war on terrorism.

Payday lenders target young military families

September 5, 2006 - Tucson, Arizona

Passing new laws to rein in payday lenders would not only save many American families from triple-digit interest rates and crushing debts but would also enhance our nation's security.

Loan shops cash in on the suburbs

September 5, 2006 - Kansas City, Kansas

Two years ago, you couldn't find a single payday loan company at 95th Street and Antioch Road in central Overland Park. Today there are three, on separate corners. 'Those are the kinds of stores that you see in parts of town you don't want to live in,' said Lori Olson of Overland Park, a suburb recently ranked by Money magazine as the sixth-best place to live.

Military wants to crack down on payday lenders

September 4, 2006 - San Diego, California

With a family to feed and no money for groceries, Navy Yeoman 2nd Class Damon LaForce recently did something the military is trying to crack down on: He went to one of the many payday-lending businesses near his base for an instant loan.

Weekend payday-loan measure fails

September 2, 2006 - Sacramento, California

A measure to curb payday-loan industry practices that target the military collapsed in the Legislature after some key backers shunned its weakened form and an Oceanside state senator who served in the Marines refused pleas by Camp Pendleton officers to support a crackdown.

August 2006

Pentagon sees risk in troops' loan debt

August 31, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

As many as one in five members of the armed services are being preyed on by loan centers set up near military bases that can charge cash-strapped military families interest of 400 percent or more, a new Pentagon report has found.

Court wacks payday-loan rules

August 31, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

Tough new rules set to go into effect today to regulate payday lenders are on hold after a District Court judge ruled the governor and attorney general exceeded their authority.

Save military, civilians from onslaught of predatory lenders

August 30, 2006 - Columbia, South Carolina

If you believe a recent Pentagon report--and I do--payday lenders, title lenders and other predatory loan businesses threaten our national defense.

ACE Cash Express Q4 profit rises on higher revenues

August 29, 2006 - Dallas, Texas

ACE Cash Express, a retail financial services provider, revealed fourth quarter financial results, reporting increased profit on a 27 percent growth in revenues.

First Cash announces acquisition of Buy-Here/Pay-Here automotive retailer

August 28, 2006 - Arlington, Texas

First Cash Financial Services, Inc. today announced the acquisition of Auto Master, an automotive retailer and related finance company focused exclusively on the 'Buy-Here/Pay-Here' segment of the used vehicle market.

New state laws regulate payday-advance loans

August 27, 2006 - Grand Rapids, Michigan

James Anderson just finished paying off a loan with an eye-popping annual percentage rate higher than 380 percent, but he couldn't have been happier. The loan was he borrowed from Approved Cash Advance, 823 28th St. SW, in Wyoming went to fix an air conditioner during the recent heat wave.

Turning payday into profit

August 20, 2006 - Sarasota, Florida

The people who call Rosemarie Hayes for help never thought they'd be in trouble. Their reasons vary. Some had a car break down, others missed paying a bill or two. Then they saw the advertisements promising fast, easy cash - a loan until next payday.

Payday loan company pays more than $500,000 in back wages to 900 workers

August 18, 2006 - Kansas City, Missouri

The U.S. Department of Labor announced today that Q.C. Financial Inc., a payday loan establishment that operates under the name of Quick Cash, has paid $519,088 in back wages to 900 employees to correct violations of the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

Mesa plan to restrict payday loan stores cited as racism

August 18, 2006 - Mesa, Arizona

One councilman says Mesa's attempts to prevent the clustering of payday loan stores is akin to racism. 'It's nothing but an attempt to keep Hispanics out of White neighborhoods,' said Councilman Tom Rawles.

Payday lender Check 'N Go faces license revocation, fines

August 17, 2006 - Olympia, Washington

Washington state's Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) alleges that Check 'N Go of Washington, Inc. collected multiple checks from borrowers to secure loans. DFI said it intends to revoke Check 'N Go's license, impose fines, order restitution, and charge for the cost of the investigation.

Bay Area check casher moves to Miami

August 16, 2006 - San Francisco, California

Allied Cash Advance has relocated its corporate headquarters from the Bay Area to Miami, citing the high cost of doing business in California, the company said Wednesday. The fast-growing company was founded in 1999 with a single location in Northern California.

State regulators start proceedings against payday lender

August 16, 2006 - Seattle, Washington

In what it characterized as its largest-ever case against a payday lender, the state Department of Financial Institutions on Wednesday filed a statement of charges against Check 'N Go of Washington Inc. and said it intends to revoke the company's license.

Advance America increases stock repurchase program by 100 million dollars

August 16, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, Inc., today announced that its board of directors has approved an extension of its stock repurchase program to cover an additional 100 million dollars of the Company's currently outstanding common stock.

Pentagon backs effort to cap interest rate on 'payday loans'

August 15, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

The Pentagon has thrown its support behind a federal initiative to cap the annual interest rate of so-called 'payday loans' to military personnel at 36 percent.

Virginia trying to set spending limits

August 13, 2006 - Hampton Roads, Virginia

Del. G. Glenn Oder, R-Newport News, has submitted a bill for the 2007 General Assembly session that will put new restrictions on the payday lending industry.

New Jersey Supremes Rule Against Class Action Waivers In Binding Arbitration Clause

August 11, 2006 - Trenton, New Jersey

The New Jersey Supreme Court on Thursday held that a provision in a payday loan contract forbidding participation by the consumer in class-wide arbitration is unenforceable. The court decided that the appropriate remedy is to sever the provision and enforce the remaining valid portions of the arbitration agreement.

State promoting alternatives to payday loans

August 11, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

A statewide television and radio Public Education Partnership campaign touting the benefits of consumer-friendly, low-cost alternatives to payday loans begins airing on Monday.

Keizer will await 2007 payday-loan law

August 9, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

Keizer leaders have decided that a state law restricting payday loans is enough for their city, even though it won't go into effect until next summer.

Payday loan rate cap aims to help service members

August 6, 2006 - Kansas City, Missouri

An impressive alliance of 70 consumer and veterans groups is supporting a congressional amendment to protect military personnel and their families from potential predatory loans.

Commander's Corner: Shipmates can prevent indebtedness, alcohol-related incidents

August 4, 2006 - San Diego, California

Shipmates, I need your help in fixing two issues that are effecting our ability to meet our mission in the region. Financial indebtedness and alcohol-related incidents are taking a toll on our readiness, and the truth is both of these issues are totally preventable.

Lawmaker takes interest in car-title, payday loans

August 4, 2006 - Hampton Roads, Virginia

Last month, Del. Glenn Oder sat down with a car-title loan officer to find out how many ways he could get fleeced. To be fair, Oder doesn't characterize it as a fleecing. He considers it more of a fact-finding mission.

'Payday' loans become target in Washington

August 3, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

Credit counselor Yolanda Dixon spends more and more time trying to help soldiers at Fort Leonard Wood who have taken out short-term, high-interest loans against their paychecks.

Lockyer sues pay day loan company over small claims

August 2, 2006 - Los Angeles, California

Attorney General Bill Lockyer yesterday filed a $2 million-plus lawsuit against a local pay day loan company for violating a state law that prohibits such businesses from suing for triple the amount of the check when customers' bank accounts do not hold sufficient funds to honor post-dated checks written to secure the loan.

California payday loan firm faces charges

August 2, 2006 - Pasadena, California

A payday loan company with offices in Arcadia and Eagle Rock faces allegations of deceptive business practices and fraud in a complaint filed Tuesday by the California Attorney General's Office.

Military payday loans

August 2, 2006 - Katy, Texas

It is no secret that payday loans are everywhere: in storefronts, on the Internet and in your Yellow Pages. A payday loan is a small, short-term loan that is intended to be paid back on the date of your next paycheck.

California Attorney General Lockyer files lawsuit against payday loan business

August 1, 2006 - Pasadena, California

California Attorney General Bill Lockyer today filed a million-plus lawsuit against Los Angeles County-based Fast Cash for violating a state law that prohibits payday loan businesses from suing for triple the amount of the check when customers' bank accounts do not hold sufficient funds to honor post-dated checks written to secure the loan.

Local payday lender allowed to collect loans

August 1, 2006 - Mountain Home, Arkansas

A Mountain Home payday lending business that closed in July is allowed to continue collecting loans from its customers, even though it was operating without a state check-cashing license.

July 2006

Oregon Governor promotes consumer-friendly payday loan alternatives

July 28, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

Governor Kulongoski today announced a new consumer campaign--including a 1-800 hotline and web site--promoting payday loan alternatives and encouraging working Oregonians to avoid these high-interest loans.

Advance America retreats

July 28, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Considering their growth over the past decade or so, so-called payday lenders are providing a much-needed service by lending customers small amounts of money -- often as little as $50 and sometimes as much as $3,000 -- for a brief period ... usually until the customer gets his or her next paycheck.

Cash America announces a 58 percent increase in year-over-year second quarter net income, raises full year earnings expectations and declares dividend

July 27, 2006 - Fort Worth, Texas

Cash America International, Inc. (NYSE:CSH) announced today that net income for the second quarter ended June 30, 2006 increased 58 percent to $10,913,000 (36 cents per share) compared to $6,900,000 (23 cents per share) for the same period in 2005.

Advance America announces results of second quarter

July 26, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

Advance America, Cash Advance Centers, Inc. (NYSE: AEA) today reported the results of its operations for the second quarter and six months ended June 30, 2006.

EZCORP payday loan revenue up 78 percent, raises 2006 guidance

July 26, 2006 - Austin, Texas

EZCORP's net income for the quarter ending June 30, 2006, increased 163% to $5,608,000 ($0.40 per share) compared to $2,129,000 ($0.16 per share) for the quarter ended June 30, 2005.

Payday loan perils

July 26, 2006 - Baton Rouge, Louisiana

One elderly Acadiana area woman calls into the local Better Business Bureau office because she doesn't understand why her Social Security check is being deposited directly into her local payday loan company's bank account.

Payday loans aren't the answer to financial woes

July 23, 2006 - Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan

You get a regular paycheck. You may have little financial experience. You deploy at a moment's notice around the world. That's why the military is the perfect prey for predatory lenders.

Republic Bancorp profits decline 28 percent, still 'solid'

July 22, 2006 - Louisville, Kentucky

Louisville's Republic Bancorp yesterday reported a 28 percent profit decline for the quarter ended June 30, primarily because of the discontinuation of the company's payday-loan business.

Tale of Alabama man's payday lending schemes: Meet John Gill, Jr.

July 20, 2006 - Phenix City, Alabama

Meet John Gill Jr. For at least 14 years, various payday loan schemes he operated around the country have made him a very rich man.

Payday loan company shuts doors in Mountain Home

July 20, 2006 - Mountain Home, Arkansas

A Mountain Home check cashing business has closed, partially complying with an administrative order issued last month, a state regulatory official said Wednesday.

Florida files suit to open EZPawn's records

July 19, 2006 - Orlando, Florida

The Florida unit of EZCorp Inc., one of the nation's largest pawn-shop chains and payday lenders, is taking heat from state regulators who accuse it of operating unlicensed offices and stonewalling an investigation of its lending activities.

Lenders cashing in on short-term loans

July 16, 2006 - Charleston, South Carolina

As a leading advocate for the low-income community, attorney Susan Berkowitz has seen firsthand the perils of payday lending.

Consider options before going to a payday lender

July 15, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

David Seely feels like scratching his head when he hears payday and car-title loan companies squawking about being squeezed out of business if New Mexico caps interest rates at 36 percent or 54 percent or 60 percent.

One family shows there is a way out from the payday loan cycle

July 15, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

Emily Bihn doesn't know what she and her young family would have done without payday loans. Between August 2003 and January of this year, Bihn, her fiance and their two little girls depended on a series of loans averaging each to pay for rent, food, gasoline, clothes -- the necessities.

Lawmakers work to make payday loans more manageable

July 14, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

The job of making small, short-term and very high-interest loans is one of the fastest growing businesses in the United States. New Mexico has 700 payday and car-title stores. Around the country: more than 22,000. And in New Mexico, a poor state and thus fertile ground, the payday and car-title industry is pretty much free to stampede because no laws control it -- even though some of the state's most prominent political figures are passionate about reining it in. So why haven't they done so? Attorney General Patricia Madrid can tell you something about that.

Payday loan crackdown blocked: Panel says Blagojevich aide politicizing issue

July 12, 2006 - Chicago, Illinois

Members of a legislative rule-making committee on Tuesday blocked Gov. Rod Blagojevich's administration from imposing highly touted restrictions on short-term lenders and complained that the agency director pushing for the change was politicizing the issue.

Cash America Buys CashNet

July 10, 2006 - Belmont, California

Cash America International said Monday it will buy CashNetUSA for million in a move to give the brick-and-mortar loan company a better online distribution channel for short-term cash advances.

Military personnel prime targets for loans

July 9, 2006 - Pensacola, Florida

Active-duty personnel are three times more likely than civilians to take out a payday loan, according to the Center of Responsible Lending. They have a steady income from the government, often with little to spare.

John Edwards: stop predatory lenders

July 7, 2006 - Des Moines, Iowa

John Edwards, a White House hopeful, focused on the problem of predatory lenders in his first swing through Iowa since a statewide poll gave his potential presidential campaign a boost.

Illinois State: Fine AmeriCash for alleged overcharges

July 7, 2006 - Springfield, Illinois

The Blagojevich administration and Attorney General Lisa Madigan took action Thursday to stop what they allege is a consumer protection violation by payday loan company AmeriCash Loans LLC of Des Plaines.

Regulating consumer loans: An unjust assault on payday loan industry

July 7, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

With its two most recent articles ('High title loan costs unchecked' and 'Payday lenders look for ways around cap,' July 2), The Oregonian continues its one-sided and unjust assault on both providers and users of short-term loans.

We owe more thought to payday loan issue

July 6, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

In recent news on the misguided attempt of Portland, Gresham, Troutdale, Silverton and now Beaverton to regulate the terribly misunderstood and wrongly maligned payday loan industry, Beaverton City Councilor Dennis Doyle, however well-intentioned, makes some statements that highlight the gross ignorance that clouds this issue.

Payday lending: Group calls for increased regulation

July 5, 2006 - North Central Arkansas

A member of an Arkansas lending advocacy group said the recent 1.3 million dollar fine against an Arkansas payday lender is a 'big step in the right direction.'

Arkansas payday lender keeps stores open

July 3, 2006 - Arkansas

The owner of 14 payday lending businesses in Arkansas, including businesses in Cabot, Beebe and Searcy, was fined 1.3 million dollars Wednesday for operating without a license and ordered to immediately cease, but all 14 are still open and the state board that handed down the order will have to take him to court to enforce it.

Payday lenders look for ways around cap

July 2, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

Some payday lenders may already be maneuvering to skirt a state law that will not take effect for another year, state officials say.

Payday-loan rules provide break

July 2, 2006 - Detroit, Michigan

Driving north on Woodward Avenue through Royal Oak the other day, I spotted a window sign proclaiming good deals on those quick-fix, high-cost, payday loans.

June 2006

Blagojevich turns up heat on payday lenders again

June 28, 2006 - Springfield, Illinois

Just months after Illinois cracked down on the short-term loan business, Gov. Rod Blagojevich is making another push for restrictions to protect consumers: a push the industry says goes too far.

Payday lenders reinventing business model to skirt state law, opponent says

June 27, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

The nation's largest payday lender stopped offering payday loans across Arkansas late last week, but Advance America said Monday it would keep doing business in the state.

Some overuse bank overdraft programs

June 26, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

Fidelity Bank billboards across Wichita advertise the bank's personal overdraft protection program as 'Your checkbook's best friend.'

Critics say high-price 'Choice' loan is still illegal

June 22, 2006 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Just three months after exiting the controversial payday lending business in Pennsylvania under pressure from state and federal regulators, payday titan Advance America is back with a new type of short-term, high-priced loan for people strapped for cash.

Advance America Cash Advance Centers upgraded to 'market outperform'

June 22, 2006 - New York, New York

Analyst John Hecht of JMP Securities upgrades Advance America Cash Advance Centers (ticker: AEA) from 'market perform' to 'market outperform,' while raising his estimates for the company. The 12-month target price is set to $18.

The loan peddlers

June 20, 2006 - Baton Rouge, Louisiana

They carry innocuous names like Doctor Check, Money Mart and Cash Cow. But critics of payday-loan stores say the high-interest products they peddle are anything but harmless and should be outlawed.

Regulate payday loans

June 19, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

If you wanted evidence of the kind of money payday lenders are making -- and are willing to shell out to protect their highly lucrative industry in Kansas -- look no further than the surreal scene that unfolded in Wichita earlier this month.

Working poor at risk in the market place

June 19, 2006 - Merrillville, Indiana

Having served as head of the region's Better Business Bureau for the past 41 years, Morris Cochran is well aware of the potential problems posed by cash advance businesses and other ventures targeting low income consumers.

Targeting predator lenders

June 17, 2006 - San Diego, California

In an unusual lobbying effort, military brass plan to visit Sacramento next week to plead with legislators to significantly amend a bill they fear could worsen the problem of 'predator lenders' targeting military personnel.

The payday loan trap

June 16, 2006 - San Diego, California

If you're still not sure on how you can get trapped in the jaws of a payday lender, here is the following scenario to break down the situation. The Scenario: Joe Sailor has a past-due bill. He writes a post-dated check for to a local payday lender.

Forgive us our debts

June 10, 2006 - Auburn, Alabama

'The rich rule over the poor and the borrower is servant to the lender.' Anyone who has ever been in debt has experienced the truth of this biblical proverb. And let's be honest with each other: debt is something we know about.

Industry leaders, consumer advocates to meet about payday loans

June 9, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

Critics of high-interest, short-term loans are seeking tighter restrictions on an industry they say is keeping poor people in a cycle of debt. At least 64 businesses in Wichita offer payday loans, and opponents say that makes it too easy for people to get in over their heads.

Navy preying on predatory lenders

June 9, 2006 - Point Loma Naval Base, California

The head of a newly-formed task force said the Navy has a different kind of enemy in its sights. 'We're going to defeat these predators and we're asking for the help of all the Sailors out there,' said Capt. Mark Patton, commanding officer of Naval Base Point Loma.

Oregon City officials look to set limits on payday loans

June 7, 2006 - Oregon City, Oregon

City commissioners decided Monday to consider tighter regulations on payday loan companies. The five-member commission directed City Manager Larry Patterson to prepare an ordinance based on one used by Portland, Gresham and Troutdale, and under consideration by Beaverton and Eugene.

GAO: Military Disciplinary Board might have prevented payday loan ripoff

June 5, 2006 - Fort Drum, New York

A Fort Drum board whose responsibilities include heading off predatory lending practices didn't even meet for four years. That's according to a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).

Payday lenders say they offer a way out

June 4, 2006 - Battle Creek, Michigan

On his first trip to a payday lender, Eric Tobin felt ashamed. He carried a stack of personal documents--pay stubs, bank statements, copies of paid-to-date utility bills--concealed in a large envelope, parked in a neighboring lot and looked both ways upon entering and exiting the small office.

Protesters target local loan businesses

June 4, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

Some Wichitans are furious over the fast cash places popping up all over the city. On Saturday, protesters went from one payday lender to another, protesting their business. Lenders say they're just doing their job.

House bill proposes new short-term loan

June 2, 2006 - Raleigh, North Carolina

The closing of payday lending shops in North Carolina this spring doesn't change working people's need for short-term loans, some House members say.

Group to protest payday loans

June 2, 2006 - Wichita, Kansas

Worried about people falling into a cycle of payday loans, Sunflower Community Action plans to protest Saturday against some lenders and their collection practices.

Payday lenders win one in court

June 1, 2006 - Lincoln, Illinois

A Sangamon County judge has halted the state's attempt to revoke the licenses of four payday loan stores that officials said were trying to circumvent payday loan reforms enacted last year.

May 2006

New Mexico puts the brakes on new payday loan licenses

May 25, 2006 - Santa Fe, New Mexico

The state has not issued a new license for a payday loan company since a moratorium was imposed in March, and will not issue a new license until the Legislature acts to change the laws regulating that industry, said Edward J. Lopez, superintendent of the state Regulation and Licensing Department.

Virginia payday loan reform is past due

May 24, 2006 - Roanoke, Virginia

Virginia's politicians take pride in the commonwealth's business-friendly climate. They should be shamed, though, by the payday lending industry that they've allowed to thrive in a loose regulatory environment. This business is loan-sharking without the leg-breaking.

AG sues loan company, citing sky-high lending rates

May 24, 2006 - Waco, Texas

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has sued a company with offices in Central Texas, contending the business has lent money at illegal interest rates of as much as 782 percent.

Payday loaning draws outrage at panel hearing

May 24, 2006 - Sacramento, California

Pleas to crack down on 'legalized loan sharks' who prey on young military personnel drew a sympathetic response from the chairwoman of a joint legislative committee yesterday, but little sign of action.

Service members called vulnerable

May 23, 2006 - San Diego, California

Military leaders will press state legislators today to protect the hundreds of thousands of young and impressionable service members who are prime targets for payday loan centers, which can charge a maximum annual rate of 459 percent.

State sues El Paso payday lender, claims loan shark operation

May 23, 2006 - El Paso, Texas

An El Paso judge has frozen the assets of a payday loan business as part of a lawsuit by state officials charging that the company is really a loan-sharking operation targeting military personnel.

Legislature must set cap on payday loans

May 21, 2006 - Nashua, New Hampshire

BACKGROUND: Six years ago, New Hampshire removed caps on the interest that can be charged on payday loans, and the state is now seeing usurious interest rates on this type of short-term borrowing.

Putting the brakes on payday loans

May 20, 2006 - Racine, Wisconsin

Alderman Aron Wisneski said he and his neighbors in the 12th District started to notice a proliferation in west Racine of a certain type of business -- payday loan stores.

Keep lid on payday loans

May 20, 2006 - Eugene, Oregon

It's almost amusing listening to payday loan businesses whine that they're going to be squeezed out of business by long-overdue limits approved in a special legislative session last month.

Judges won't hear payday loan cases

May 19, 2006 - Gallup, New Mexico

Local payday lenders and their overdue customers have been waiting longer than usual for their day in court lately. According to Cynthia Sanders, chief clerk of the McKinley County Magistrate Court, the city's two magistrate judges have been recusing themselves from all payday loan cases for the past three weeks.

Two convicted in payday loan cases

May 19, 2006 - Bainbridge, Georgia

Two people were convicted in Superior Court this week of making high-interest payday loans in violation of Georgia law, District Attorney Joe Mulholland said. Mulholland said these are the state's first felon convictions under the state's new payday lending law.

New Mexico rules to cap payday loan fees

May 18, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

Gov. Bill Richardson and Attorney General Patricia Madrid today announced new regulations aimed at curbing the predatory loan business in New Mexico. The regulations, which target payday lenders, would go into effect July 16 after a public comment period in June.

Norfolk aims to curb number of payday lenders

May 16, 2006 - Norfolk, Virginia

Like gas stations and convenience stores, payday lenders tend to spring up wherever consumer traffic is heavy. "We're located in malls and near big-box retailers because that's where our customers are," said Wayne "Jabbo" Covert, vice president for government affairs at Check into Cash Inc., a Cleveland, Tenn., lender with 21 stores in Hampton Roads.

Alternatives to small, short-term loans are available

May 14, 2006 - Nashua, New Hampshire

Peter Hildreth doesn't want to take sides on the payday lending issue, but he does say there needs to be alternatives to cash-advance storefronts. "The people who are taking these loans need to take a loan," said Hildreth, commissioner of the New Hampshire Banking Department.

Short-term payday loans do a booming business in N.H.

May 14, 2006 - Nashua, New Hampshire

About once a month, Leah Gabriel makes a trip to the Advance America branch on Main Street to take out a "payday" loan. "If I have a car problem, it helps me out, or if I need extra cash," said the Nashua woman, who visited the local branch of the nation's largest cash-advance chain Thursday afternoon with her son and daughter in tow.

Documents containing personal info found outside payday loan business

May 12, 2006 - Louisville, Kentucky

Thousands of documents containing personal and financial information were found unshredded and scattered behind the Money Now payday loan business on Taylor Boulevard.

LeadClick Media says payday loan leads business is booming

May 8, 2006 - San Francisco, California

A leading San Francisco-based Internet lead generation firm and pioneer of performance-based, cost-per-action marketing solutions, reports lender demand for marketing services that generate Internet payday loan leads is quickly reaching a fevered pitch.

Payday-loan controls nixed

May 6, 2006 - Phoenix, Arizona

The Ahwatukee Foothills Village Planning Committee has given the thumbs-down to a Phoenix plan to limit the number of payday-loan centers in the city.

Payday-lending reform bill is next to useless

May 5, 2006 - Tucson, Arizona

The Legislature overwhelmingly passed a payday lending bill, and last week the governor signed it. But this is no cause for celebration. "It's not much of a bill," Rep. Marian McClure, R-Tucson, told me Wednesday. "But it's better than no bill at all."

Payday loan company QC Holdings reports drop in income

May 4, 2006 - Kansas City, Missouri

Overland Park-based payday loan company QC Holdings Inc. today reported a drop in first-quarter net income but said it got a better handle on loan losses.

Consumer Federation of America launches payday loan information website

May 4, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

The Consumer Federation of America (CFA) launched a web site intended to, in their words "Help consumers and policymakers combat extremely expensive check-based lending."

Payday lending now has 1 billion dollar foothold in Virginia

May 4, 2006 - Virginia

Payday lending became more entrenched in Virginia last year as the volume of short-term, high-interest loans surpassed $1 billion, according to data released by state banking regulators Wednesday.

April 2006

Industry to fight payday loan limits

April 22, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

Consumer activists scored a victory this week when they persuaded the Oregon Legislature to cap interest rates that lenders may charge for short-term payday loans. However, the regulations don't take effect until July 2007 . . .

Motivations questioned in payday-loan vote

April 21, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

Concerns surfaced Friday that some lawmakers voted for the payday loan bill during Thursday's special session as a political move to get incumbents re-elected.

Payday loan regulations win final approval

April 20, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

A bill to limit interest on payday loans to 36 percent a year and enact other consumer protections for borrowers of the loans won final approval Thursday in the Oregon Legislature.

Payday loan reform heats up

April 19, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

So-called predatory lending is the key issue for an Oregon Senate Committee today (Thursday). It's considering whether the issue of payday loan reform should be tackled during next week's special session. That issue had Senate support last time around, but never made it to the House floor.

Group asks for strong payday loan law or nothing at all

April 13, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

A group pushing a ballot initiative to rein in payday loan practices is urging the coming special legislative session to avoid the issue if proposals are weaker than what their initiative outlines.

Payday loans under fire for high interest charges

April 12, 2006 - Eugene, Oregon

Payday loan companies in Lane County typically charge annual interest rates exceeding 500 percent, and frequently fail to conspicuously post those rates as required by state law, according to a study being released today by the Oregon Student Public Interest Research Group.

Payday loan regulations stalled in Madison

April 9, 2006 - Madison, Wisconsin

The prospect of regulating Wisconsin's growing payday lending industry is going nowhere, and a new proposal in the Legislature isn't likely to do anything to break the impasse.

ACORN turns up the heat on Money Mart

April 8, 2006 - San Francisco Bay Area, California

On Friday, members of ACORN, Money Mart customers who have been ripped off, and allies from labor and other community groups protested at Money Mart stores in more than 30 cities across the U.S. and Canada, including in San Francisco where 40 members picketed in front of the Money Mart store at Seventh and Market Street.

State revokes licenses

April 5, 2006 - Aurora, Illinois

A state agency has revoked licenses for four Fox Valley lending facilities owned by the Payday Loan Store of Illinois Inc., charging that they forged documents, took invalid Social Security numbers and failed to give the proper information to applicants.

New rules seek to reform small loans

April 5, 2006 - Aurora, Illinois

The recent allegations against the Payday Loan Store of Illinois Inc. are merely the latest step in an effort by the state to reform short-term lending practices.

Payday loan company makes travel donations to group chaired by Richardson

April 1, 2006 - Albuquerque, New Mexico

The nation's largest payday loan company has been providing thousands of dollars to the Democratic Governors Association chaired by Gov. Bill Richardson.

March 2006

My Payday Loan survey shows customers are happy about payday loans

March 30, 2006 - United Kingdom

My Payday Loan - part of MEM Consumer Finance Ltd - held its first customer survey with one hundred customers being asked for their comments on the cash advance business. The comments ranged from praise for the ease of the service to dispelling some of the myths about short term borrowing.

Loans that come easy can go bad fast

March 24, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

The newspaper classified ad seemed simple enough. The Cash Store in Wood Village was looking for a store manager to process loans.

S.C. must rein in payday lenders before they run over state's consumers

March 23, 2006 - Columbia, South Carolina

South Carolina is in danger of being overrun by payday lenders seeking to squeeze vulnerable consumers, many of whom are already in financial jams, for every possible dollar.

Nation's largest payday lender looks at possibly pulling out of Arkansas

March 21, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

The nation's largest payday lending company is considering possibly shuttering its 30 stores in Arkansas, a move that a leading critic of the industry said Monday he hoped would begin a mass exodus of payday lenders from the state.

Advance America to stop operations in Arkansas

March 20, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

Advance America of Spartanburg, S.C., said in a Securities & Exchange Commission filing last week that it will cease pay lending operations in Arkansas.

Payday loans gaining popularity

March 18, 2006 - Wilmington, Delaware

A few weeks ago, Larry Woody needed $200 fast and turned to an increasingly popular source: a payday lender. He wrote a check for $234 -- post-dated by two weeks so the lender couldn't cash it until then -- and walked out with his $200. He had just paid the equivalent of 440 percent annual interest.

Payday loan survey raises questions: What does 'middle-income' mean?

March 17, 2006 - Tucson, Arizona

Arizonans with payday loans tend to be younger than the state's average resident, "middle-income" and educated, according to a survey by the payday-loan industry. But a comparison with Arizona census figures shows payday borrowers tend to fall into lower income brackets, and payday-lending critics questioned the survey's findings.

Payday lenders cost state's poor $68 million a year, coalition says

March 9, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

Loopholes in the state's payday lending law cost low-income Arkansans more than $68 million annually, according to a report released by an anti-payday lending coalition Wednesday.

Who watches lenders?

March 8, 2006 - North Pulaski County, Arkansas

Arkansas has 275 cash advance or payday lending stores, of which only 66 are licensed and make any pretense of being regulated by the state, according to a study to be released Wednesday morning by Arkansans Against Abusive Payday Lending (AAAPL).

BankWest pulls out; Advance America to cease payday loan ops in Pennsylvania

March 7, 2006 - Spartanburg, South Carolina

"We would like to apologize to customers in Pennsylvania for the inconvenience caused by this event and the reality that they will be forced to choose more costly alternatives." - Kenneth E. Compton, Advance America, CEO and President

Payday lenders gone, not demand: Finance companies, banks vying to fill void when people seek cash

March 5, 2006 - Charlotte, North Carolina

It may seem odd to wonder where people will turn now that payday lenders have left North Carolina. There is not exactly a shortage of opportunities to borrow money at very high interest rates.

Quick cash lashes borrowers

March 5, 2006 - St. Louis, Missouri

Quick cash is easy to get in Missouri. But it will cost you. The cash advance industry is a booming business here, fueled by pawn brokers, check-cashing outlets, title loans and "payday" loan companies.

Loan Shark of the Year award given

March 2, 2006 - Fresno, California

Money Mart was given the "Loan Shark of the Year" award for their predatory loan practices in the Fresno area. A brief ceremony was held at the companies Manchester Mall facility as members from ACORN, a local community group, handed the manager a certificate and miniature shark to symbolize Money Mart's ruthless business practices.

Republic Bank ending payday loan business

March 2, 2006 - Louisville, Kentucky

At the urging of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., Republic Bank & Trust Co. has decided to end its payday loan business.

Three NC payday lenders agree to close, nearly drying up industry

March 1, 2006 - Raleigh, North Carolina

The three major payday lenders still operating in North Carolina will stop offering quick-cash loans in the state, just about eliminating payday lending here, Attorney General Roy Cooper announced Wednesday.

February 2006

Reformers take aim at payday loan rates

February 28, 2006 - Eugene, Oregon

The Rev. Tom Dodd recalls the older parishioner who was living on Social Security and became mired in debt after taking out a couple of payday loans. "I asked if I could come over and look at the paperwork, and I couldn't believe it," says Dodd, pastor at United Lutheran Church in Eugene.

Tsosie filibusters payday loan bill

February 23, 2006 - Gallup, New Mexico

On Monday, Rep. Patricia Lundstrom, D-Gallup, said she was taken by surprise when Sen. Leonard Tsosie helped mount a filibuster on the 2006 Legislature's last day to kill her payday lending bill.

First Bank of Delaware to end 'payday' loans

February 22, 2006 - Wilmington, Delaware

Under pressure from federal regulators, First Bank of Delaware plans to end its involvement with controversial high-interest "payday" loans.

Military loses to payday lenders

February 20, 2006 - Hampton Roads, Virginia

The payday loan industry has exploded in Virginia, and there's been plenty of collateral damage to the financial health of the enlisted servicemen who call the commonwealth home.

Report offers boost for payday-loan industry

February 17, 2006 - Las Vegas, Nevada

The embattled payday-loan industry got an unlikely ally recently when the National Association of Community Credit Unions released a report outlining the public need for short-term, small-denomination loans.

Payday-lending bill is pulled

February 14, 2006 - Richmond, Virginia

A bill tightening payday-lending laws was pulled by its sponsor yesterday, and the car-title lending industry failed to get the regulatory legislation it wanted from the House of Delegates.

Payday loan bill revised

February 12, 2006 - Gallup, New Mexico

A bill that would impose new consumer protection rules on the payday lending industry continues its march through the New Mexico Legislature this week. But it's not quite the bill it was when it first showed up in Santa Fe.

Payday loan law put on hold

February 11, 2006 - Springfield, Illinois

A Sangamon County judge on Friday blocked a state agency from enforcing parts of the new Payday Loan Reform Act, a consumer-protection law that some loan businesses say would cause them "irreparable harm."

House approves bill to regulate payday lending

February 7, 2006 - Santa Fe, New Mexico

A proposal to regulate short-term or payday loans has cleared the House. Rep. Patricia Lundstrom, D-Gallup, said the proposal approved Monday sought to balance the concerns of lenders and consumer advocates, who contend people become trapped in debt because of the high-cost loans.

Interest grows in payday loan companies populating Poconos

February 5, 2006 - Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania

Advance America, the local payday loan emporium, may be a disastrous financial step backward for most borrowers, consumer advocates warn. Exploiting a loophole in the state's usury laws, payday loan storefronts are spreading in Pennsylvania despite the fact that they charge more than 400 annual percentage rate on their loans.

Customer warns: 'These places are back breakers'

February 4, 2006 - Farmington, New Mexico

Friday evening Kelly Curtis, 49, walked in to a payday loan company to make a final payment on a loan she had taken out because it was the only place that would give her money when she needed it. "These places are back breakers," the Farmington resident said.

Toll taken by payday loans gets attention from military

February 2, 2006 - Olympia, Washington

It seemed like such an easy solution. Last April, faced with mounting medical bills, 44-year-old Sandra Miller went to a payday loan shop in Clarkston. For about $50 in fees and interest, she said, she took out a two-week loan of $300.

Military calls for more restrictions on payday lenders

February 2, 2006 - Olympia, Washington

To Rear Adm. William French, the stories keep coming like waves - many of his sailors are adrift in a sea of debt, often at the mercy of payday lenders. The outstanding loans aren't just a danger to bank accounts. Military personnel are often consumed by their struggles to make ends meet.

House committee endorses payday loan plan

February 2, 2006 - Pierre, South Dakota

South Dakota needs to take more steps to protect borrowers who go to payday lenders to get short-term loans at high interest rates, Rep. Joni Cutler, R-Sioux Falls, said Thursday.

Cash advance to computer upgrades

February 1, 2006 - Scottsdale, Arizona

Checking Advance has determined that some consumers are using cash advances to pay for computer upgrades. Computers and especially email have become essential parts of many people's lives.

US troops screwed by loan shark companies

February 1, 2006 - Washington, D.C.

More than 100,000 US troops have been saddled with long-term debt in return for short-term cash from "payday loan" stores charging interest rates that would make the mob blush. And the loan industry's powerful lobbyists, both Democratic and Republican, are fighting hard to keep the interest windfalls, which in at least one case topped 500%, the Daily News has learned.

January 2006

This opinion brought to you by...

January 30, 2006 - New York, New York

. . . The Hill, a Washington newspaper read closely in Congress, published an opinion piece last June extolling 'payday loans.' Readers weren't told that the author, Tom Lehman, a professor at Indiana Wesleyan University, had taken money from the industry that pushes these controversial high-interest loans.

Every day's a payday: Can San Francisco control legal loan-sharking?

January 27, 2006 - San Francisco, California

On Ellis Street in the Tenderloin, near a Happy Donuts shop and the Glide Memorial Church, stands one of the city's 10 Money Mart locations, a bare-bones storefront with little more than a lobby and a bulletproof partition separating the masses from the money.

Payday loan customers getting older

January 26, 2006 - Scottsdale, Arizona

Personal Cash Advance released a quarterly demographic survey this week which indicates that consumers of cash advance products are getting older.

Payday-loan repeal sought

January 26, 2006 - Richmond, Virginia

A bill repealing Virginia's Payday Loan Act is one of several consumer-oriented bills to be considered by state lawmakers today.

Bills to rein in payday loans surface in Pierre

January 25, 2006 - Pierre, South Dakota

Bills regulating the 300 or so quick-loan shops in South Dakota have been introduced in the 2006 Legislature.

Fall victim finds financial relief with a lawsuit loan

January 21, 2006 - Minneapolis, Minnesota

With a lawsuit cash advance, Dorothy was able to receive cash today against the future cash settlement of her lawsuit to keep financially afloat while waiting for a settlement of her lawsuit.

Catholic leaders call payday loan outfits 'predatory', ask for interest rate caps

January 19, 2006 - Portland, Oregon

Catholic leaders are saying that a proliferation of little-regulated payday loan shops offering "cash now," take Oregon out of the national, and moral, mainstream.

Alternatives to high interest payday loans are viable and Operating rent-a-banks help lenders skirt Arkansas law

January 17, 2006 - Little Rock, Arkansas

Today, Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families (AACF) released a report detailing viable and workable product models to counter the high interest rates (up to 400 percent) charged by Arkansas payday lenders.

Legislators eye short-term lending: Payday loan companies might see limits

January 15, 2006 - Pierre, South Dakota

As the first week of South Dakota's 81st Legislative Session wound to a close, the state's short-term lending industry posed a quandary in many legislators' minds.

Witnesses call for lending limits

January 12, 2006 - Salem, Oregon

Church leaders and consumer advocates urged legislators Wednesday to crack down on Oregon's booming payday lending industry, which charges soaring interests rates on short-term loans.

Payday-loan businesses still operate

January 12, 2006 - Greensboro, North Carolina

Businesses that loan consumers money until payday continue to operate in North Carolina despite a ruling condemning their business practices by the state's leading banking official.

Lenders cash in

January 11, 2006 - Denver, Colorado

Colorado's payday lenders are charging borrowers an average annual interest rate of 391 percent on short-term loans that are typically paid off in 17 days, a new study reports.

December 2005

Advance America Cash Advance 'market perform,' estimates reduced

December 28, 2005 - JMP Securities

Analyst John Hecht of JMP Securities maintains his "market perform" rating on Advance America Cash Advance Inc (ticker: AEA), while reducing his estimates for the company.

Personal injury cash advance helps auto accident victim

December 28, 2005 - PRLeap.com

Auto accidents can happen unexpectedly and do. Such was the case with Paulette Peterson in November of 2004. Like many people she found herself injured in an auto accident and unable to work. Fortunately Lawsuit Cash Advance, LLC was there with a personal injury cash advance to help her get through the day.

Cash Advance's loans in N.C. ruled illegal

December 23, 2005 - Winston-Salem, North Carolina

The N.C. commissioner of banks, Joseph Smith Jr., ruled yesterday that Advance America Cash Advance Centers of N.C. Inc. must immediately stop payday-lending operations in the state.

Arizona payday loan stores face restrictions

December 22, 2005 - Mesa, Arizona

Two months after a fatal shooting at a west Mesa payday loan store, the City Council has voted to draft an ordinance preventing the clustering of such businesses. Monday's 4-3 vote could force payday and auto title loan stores to be bound by the same policies governing tattoo parlors and pawn shops, which have to be at least 1,200 feet apart in Mesa.

Pennsylvania lawsuit over payday lending seeks reimbursement for thousands

December 22, 2005 - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Thousands of people who borrowed money from one of the city's biggest check-cashing businesses should be reimbursed for the astronomical interest they were charged because the rates were illegal, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday. Though Pennsylvania law allows licensed lenders to charge around 24 percent annual interest, the "payday loans" offered by Cash Today routinely carry rates of 400 percent to 500 percent

Illinois issues fines under new payday loan law

December 21, 2005 - Springfield, Illinois

State regulators are moving quickly against payday lenders that they deem are attempting to circumvent the state's new law regulating payday loans. The Illinois Division of Financial Institutions has fined three firms in the last three days for different infractions. Topping the list is a $10,000 fine . . . against Texas-based Cottonwood Financial Ltd., which does business as both the Cash Store and Cash ASAP at 45 locations in Illinois.

Las Vegas Valley payday loan stores face checks, balances

December 15, 2005 - Las Vegas Valley, Nevada

Las Vegas Valley cities are stepping up efforts to limit the number of payday loan stores in their communities. Henderson is preparing to join Clark County and Las Vegas in restricting the location of payday loan companies as part of an effort to hold down their number. And North Las Vegas is planning to extend a moratorium on new payday loan stores through May 20 to give the city more time to develop its own ordinance restricting their use.

Oregon payday loan shops under fire from officials

December 13, 2005 - Portland, Oregon

Legislators, activists and a Portland city commissioner say they will move to further limit practices of the hundreds of "payday loan" offices across the state. The number of businesses has mushroomed in recent years, and 70 companies now operate 356 payday or auto loan shops across the state, frequently charging interest rates of around 512 percent for quick short-term.

Indian Affairs Committee panel proposes payday-loan limit

December 8, 2005 - Santa Fe, New Mexico

Legislators, activists and a Portland city commissioner say they will move to further limit practices of the hundreds of "payday loan" offices across the state. The number of businesses has mushroomed in recent years, and 70 companies now operate 356 payday or auto loan shops across the state, frequently charging interest rates of around 512 percent for quick short-term.

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Industry preys on Alabamians
March 19 - Montgomery, Alabama - Starting later this year, payday lenders who prey on the working poor in Alabama, charging unconscionable interest rates of 450 percent or more, won't be able to do so for those Alabamians who serve in the military.

Payday lenders hope to return in Georgia
March 18 - Atlanta, Georgia - When the Georgia General Assembly opened for business in January, representatives of the payday lending industry walked in the Capitol's door, eager for another battle. . . . the return to Georgia was a bold move.

Payday lenders, state reach deal on curbing fees
March 18 - Phoenix, Arizona - The state's payday lenders have agreed to sharp new curbs on their practices and fees in exchange for ensuring they are not forced out of business in three years.

Proposed law to control payday lending - [March 18]
House, Senate lawmakers agree on payday loan restrictions - [March 16]
Payday loan regulation bill passes Senate - [March 16]
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Interview with David Farias - Founder, FYGO.com
Payday loan opponents caution people against taking payday loans. We interviewed David to better understand the practice and viability of an emerging source for loans: The Internet social lending network.

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Interview with Dr. Tom Lehman - Author of 'In Defense of Payday Lending'
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