Committee Investigates Payday Lending Schemes
Synopsis: The ETI Committee hosted an event in Parliament Buildings to investigate payday lending and specifically, regulation of payday lending schemes.
Date: 05 February 2013
Reference: ETI 05/12/13
The Committee for Enterprise, Trade and Investment, hosted an event in Parliament Buildings today to investigate payday lending and specifically, regulation of payday lending schemes.
Guests at the event included representatives from the Financial Services Authority (FSA), Citizens Advice, Advice NI, the Consumer Council, DETI’s Consumer Affairs Branch, the Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU) and the Ulster Federation of Credit Unions (UFCU).
Committee Chairperson, Patsy McGlone MLA said, “The responsibility of the regulation of consumer credit is moving from the Office of Fair Trading to the Financial Conduct Authority when it replaces the FSA in the very near future. In light of this, the Committee is ensuring that the FSA is fully aware of the key issues with the current regulatory regime and that nothing is overlooked during the transition. This includes issues relating to irresponsible lending such as credit checks not being undertaken and high levels of interest on loans, which can often exceed 4,000% APR.
“I am delighted to have engaged with these key stakeholders to obtain their expert views on the issue and to discuss solutions; specifically their views on what needs to be put in place in future regulation to ensure that similar problems do not arise for consumers in the future.”
The Chairperson concluded: “Payday lending schemes are becoming more and more popular and utilisation of such schemes is steadily increasing. As such, it is important that the appropriate regulations and levels of regulation are in place to protect the consumer; the Committee is keen to work with local stakeholders to ensure this outcome is achieved.”
From L-R: Sinéad Campbell, Advice NI; Aodhan O’Donnell, Consumer Council; Robin Newton MLA, Committee Member; Patsy McGlone MLA, Chairperson of Committee; Steven Agnew MLA, Committee Member; Neil Dhot, FSA; Rachael Gray, Citizens Advice.