Sorry about the lack of blog posts, I’m learning how to advise students this week. So back to the credit market. This November Ohioans will be voting on a cap of interest payments for loans. As I noted in a blog post over a year (one of my first at Towson), interest rates at payday loan locations can approach 400% per year, the cap on the ballot is 28% a yea.
The Toledo Blade argues that voters should vote against the cap because “Opponents would have voters believe that 6,000 jobs will be lost if H.B. 545 goes into effect because payday lenders can't keep their doors open charging "only" 28 percent interest. They say the issues at stake are financial freedom, privacy, and not limiting lending options.”
As I noted in my previous pay day loan post, there are more payday loan operations than McDonalds in Ohio. In my home town of Delaware, OH its 4 McDs compared to 6 check cash/ pay day loan locations. Economic theory would dedicate that if one of them could still make money by charging 50% interest they would and could likely garner all the business by advertising lower prices.
Since there are many payday loan companies and anyone can start one, it is likely few loans will get made at a 28% interest rate.
I’m reasonably sure these payday loan jobs will be lost, people will no longer be able to get loans. From a pure economic theory stand point, we must believe that either people would be better off having the option of a payday loan or that people are not very good at making their own decisions so eliminating payday loan operations would be a net improvement.
I no longer live in Ohio, but I spent the first 18 years of my life there. I’m not sure how I would vote, because I see both beliefs.
Next post (hopefully tomorrow), I will compare payday loans with microcredit in developing countries. Why is that small loans in developing countries have lower interest rates (100% per year) and why are these loans more likely to be repaid.