News Column

Three More Payday Loan Ads Banned

July 30, 2014



LONDON, July 30 -- Advertising Standards Authority issued the following news:

Today (30 July 2014) we banned a further three payday loan adverts, by Cash On Go Ltd (http://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2014/7/Cash-On-Go-Ltd/SHP_ADJ_261532.aspx), Sandhurst Associates Ltd (http://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2014/7/Sandhurst-Associates-Ltd/SHP_ADJ_261536.aspx) and HotPond Media Ltdhttp://www.asa.org.uk/Rulings/Adjudications/2014/7/HotPond-Media-Ltd/SHP_ADJ_261533.aspx), for being socially irresponsible, reasons included encouraging a casual attitude toward taking a loan and condoning borrowing for those who might not be able to manage repayments to take out a loan. The complaints were lodged by Citizen's Advice, and form part of our on-going commitment to ensuring that payday loan ads are socially responsible.

Payday loan advertising has attracted concern across society, including Government, media, consumer protection bodies and the public as the use of short-term, high-cost credit increased during the economic downturn. That's why regulators, consumer bodies and industry have been working to drive up standards in the sector.

In addition to the work we've carried out, our sister bodies, the Committees of Advertising Practice (BCAP and CAP) which are responsible for writing and maintaining the Advertising Codes, have been working to ensure that the Advertising Codes provides adequate protection for consumers.

In October 2013, CAP published updated guidance for payday loan advertisers on what they need to do to ensure that their ads are socially responsible. In June 2014, BCAP announced a review into how the advertising rules are being applied to payday loan advertising appearing on TV to ensure that young people, in particular, continue to be protected. The outcome of this review will be communicated this autumn.

More widely, there's been a clamp down on misleading and socially irresponsible practices within the payday loans sector. Only last week the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), regulator of the financial services industry, revealed its plans for a cap on the amount that payday lenders can charge their customers. While one of the biggest operators in the sector Wonga declared it would no longer use puppets in its advertising, and would be looking at the scheduling of its advertising as part of a wider review of its business.

We're committed to ensuring that the right levels of protection are in place for consumers and vulnerable groups, so that ads are appropriate and don't cause harm. We'll report on the outcome of the BCAP review shortly.

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