UK taking aim at payday lenders


The companies in the UK that offer high-interest short-term loans to consumers have attracted the attention of authorities seeking to hem them in, and one tool up for discussion is a total ban on advertising the services.

According to, the Financial Conduct Authority is considering a no-advertising policy, even while consumer watchdogs and charities are calling for more direct action in the form of actually doing something about the interest rates the services charge.

According to the article, even if an advertising tactic is pursued, there are options to consider. A total ban would place it in the same class as tobacco; however, the FCA is also considering a partial ban, limiting acceptable advertising conditions as is the case with legal gambling.

A specific tactic mentioned was banning the ads from daytime television, when unemployed and otherwise vulnerable consumers tend to make up a larger portion of the viewing audience.

Another UK entity, the Advertising Standards Agency, is said to have recently demanded that payday loan advertising be amended. It was noted that effective advertising has lent some of the companies an unwarranted aura of legitimacy, and as a result, some consumers are making poor use of their services and paying the price for it.