The Missoula Debate & Online Cash Advance

In Missoula, Montana, there has been a heated debate for the last few days over whether or not there should be a capped interest rate for payday loans. The League of Women Voters was gracious enough to hold an open debate on Tuesday Night for both sides to defend their ideas on payday lending and the initiative 164.  The initiative 164 would place a 36 percent interest capping rate on all payday loans and title loans.  Those who are in favor of this initiative agree that charging 400 percent on the average payday loan is predatory and this regulation will help to protect consumers from poor payday lending practices, especially those who are from a lower income and seniors.   Greg Harper, who is from the Consumer Credit Council, is in agreement with the initiative as he wants to help his clients reach out from the pits of debt and see an end to high interest payday loans. Those who oppose the Initiative 164 say that capping the interest rate is unfair since this will force the short term loan industry out of business.  The opponents also say that bank overdraft fees can be as high as 700 percent so if anyone should be targeted it should be them.  They say that banks can charge $35 for bouncing a $5 check where as in the payday lending industry they make approximately $15 for every $100 taken out, which is relatively small.  Whether this initiative goes to court or not, remains in the hands of the courtroom.  The date is set for September 30th, where this 2 day trial will determine whether or not Initiative 164 can be placed on the November voting ballot.

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