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Millions to look towards payday loans

Millions to look towards payday loans

Category: Loans

Updated: 14/12/2012
First Published: 07/12/2011

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Millions of people will look to payday loans over the next six months as the struggle to make it to payday intensifies.

Payday loans and eye-wateringly high interest rates will become a reality for some 3.5 million people, according to research by insolvency trade body R3.

And figures show that the experience will not be a pleasant one for many.

Of those sampled who had taken a payday loan, 60% regret the decision and 48% believe the loan has made their financial situation worse.

Only 13% believe their payday loan had a positive impact on their finances.

"Payday loans are not the best way to resolve debt struggles," said Frances Coulson, president of R3. "We know that many who take them out find them to be a negative experience, often escalating financial troubles."

Figures show that nearly two thirds (60%) of individuals are worried about their debt levels, a rise of more than 20% since July.

In London this figure rises to 67%, but peaks at 70% in the North East where concern is at its highest.

But the Consumer Finance Association (CFA) has questioned the research, saying that it has found satisfaction levels amongst people taking payday loans to be much higher.

"Our own independent research, and that of our members, has shown that on the contrary, 94% of payday customers are satisfied with the service and crucially that more than nine out of ten customers of a CFA member said they had never felt they were being pressured by staff to extend existing loans," said John Lamidey, chief executive of the CFA.

"This is in contrast to the R3 assertions."

The CFA is warning critics that without the option of short-term loans, consumers could actually end up paying back more in interest if they borrow on their credit cards or take a short-tem loan from their bank.

"Whilst we would not suggest that people replace regular income with a payday loan, our service is often the most competitive short-term credit option when people are faced with more month than money," added Mr Lamidey.

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