News Column

Short-term finance Complaints upheld over payday lenders' adverts

July 30, 2014

Hilary Osborne

Three payday loan companies have had advertisements banned after Citizens Advice complained they were irresponsible and misleading. One ad for online lender was printed on sandwich wrappers and claimed: "Loans from pounds 50 to pounds 500 . . . Cheaper than Payday Loans! Pay back in partial payments!" The Advertising Standards Authority said it had failed to provide evidence that customers would pay less than with other short-term lenders.

Another ad for the same firm, which showed a cartoon of a mouth next to text including the phrase, "Small bites put a smile on your lips", was banned for encouraging a casual attitude toward taking a loan. Another, for broker Loan Monarch, was sent out as a text to people who applied for an unsecured loan on another website.

The ASA upheld the Citizens Advice view that the message "Hi, need a quick loan pounds 100 up to pounds 25,000, 98% acceptance rates! No credit checks, CCJs and defaults OK" might encourage people who were not able to manage repayments to take out a loan.

A similar text ad for was banned after the regulator agreed that it implied recipients could be approved for a loan regardless of their circumstances and trivialised the lending service. Hilary Osborne

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Source: Guardian (UK)

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