Company Must Pay $1.35M For Claiming Copper-Infused Sleeves Relieve Chronic Pain

Company Must Pay $1.35M For Claiming Copper-Infused Sleeves Relieve Chronic Pain

Slapping on a knee brace or wrapping your ankle might provide a bit of comfort for aches and pains related to physical activity, but who wants to do all that work when slipping on copper-infused compression clothing can take all your pain away? That seems like a simple, easy way to rid yourself of severe and chronic pain and inflammation, you know, if it were actually backed by science. But it apparently wasn’t, and now athletic apparel company Tommie Copper must pay for that little oversight – to the tune of $1.35 million. [More]

(Luke Hornick)

Authorities Shut Down 5 Shady Debt Collectors, Secure $6.5M In Relief

The Federal Trade Commission teamed up with two states to put an end to five unscrupulous debt collection operations that illegally deceived millions of Americans. The actions, made under the “Operation Collection Protection” initiative between federal, state and local law enforcement authorities, represent $6.5 million in relief for millions of consumers.  [More]

Report: Payday Lenders Funded Academic Research Favorable To Payday Lending

Report: Payday Lenders Funded Academic Research Favorable To Payday Lending

It’s not very unusual for academic research to be funded by grants from for-profit entities, especially in the sciences. What they’re specifically not supposed to do is provide financial support and line-by-line editing to what’s supposed to be independent academic research. Yet that’s what appears to have happened to a paper that seems to prove that high interest rates don’t affect customers’ ability to repay their loans. [More]

CFPB To Consider Rules That Would Revoke Banks’ “License To Steal”

Van Swearingen

The lengthy, often complicated terms of use for more than half of all credit cards — and nearly half of all federally insured bank deposits — include clauses that force customers into arbitration, taking away their right to sue these companies in a court of law and usually blocking them from joining together in a class action. Critics argue that these forced-arbitration clauses allow banks and other businesses to break the law with impunity. Heeding the call of lawmakers and consumer advocates, the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has decided to consider rules that would ban this practice among financial institutions. [More]

(NOTE: Mr. Winterkorn did not actually say the above statement, but you know he's probably thought it once or twice.)

Ousted Volkswagen CEO Might Still Get $67M Payday, Plus Company Car

If I got fired — sorry, had to resign — from a CEO job because my company’s stock value had tanked in the middle of a worldwide product recall scandal, the most I’d expect to walk away with is my fancy CEO nameplate and the framed picture of my teacup basset hound “Drooly” that I keep on my desk. But the recently exiled CEO of Volkswagen could be wiping away his tears with a payout worth upwards of $67 million. [More]

10 Things We Learned About The Structured Settlement Purchase Industry

10 Things We Learned About The Structured Settlement Purchase Industry

Report after report finds that payday lenders, auto title loan firms and pension advance operations unfairly target vulnerable consumers with high fees and questionable terms, but a new investigative piece from The Washington Post shows that are some lesser-known, but very lucrative players offering quick cash to vulnerable consumers: structured settlement purchasing companies. [More]

Regulators Sue Pension Advance Companies Over Deceptive Marketing Of Loans

Regulators Sue Pension Advance Companies Over Deceptive Marketing Of Loans

Five months after the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau warned that pension advance loans could be the new payday loan – leaving consumers who are already struggling to make ends meet in dire financial situations – the agency announced it had teamed up with the state of New York to shut down two companies that allegedly deceived retirees about the risks and costs associated with the loan products. [More]

Regulators File Suit Against Data Broker That Helped Payday Loan Scammer Bilk $7M From Consumers

Regulators File Suit Against Data Broker That Helped Payday Loan Scammer Bilk $7M From Consumers

From time to time, federal regulators shut down shady payday lending companies that debit consumers’ accounts or charge their credit cards without permission. But those nefarious operations have to get their information from somewhere, right? Well, today the Federal Trade Commission sent a message to all of those companies providing such personal information to scammy-mcscammersons by taking action against a data broker operation that illegal sold payday loan applicants’ financial information. [More]

(scurzuzu)

Regulators Sue To Shut Down Illegal Offshore Payday Loan Network

While most of us think of payday lenders as small-time storefront operations, there is also a complicated web of interconnected payday businesses operating outside the U.S. borders, but illegally issuing costly short-term loans to American borrowers. A newly filed lawsuit hopes to put an end to one such network. [More]

Add-ons allowed in states like Louisiana defeat the purpose of initial interest rate caps.

Most State Laws Can’t Protect Borrowers From Predatory Installment Loans, Open-End Lines Of Credit

As regulators continue to craft rules meant to crackdown on costly and harmful short-term payday lending, companies are offering alternative products like installment loans and open lines of credit to consumers. But, as it turns out, these cash infusions can be just as devastating to those in need, and few states offer sufficient protections for borrowers. [More]

Expansion Of Military Lending Act Closes Loopholes Exploited By Predatory Lenders

Expansion Of Military Lending Act Closes Loopholes Exploited By Predatory Lenders

Nearly a decade after legislation was put in place to protect U.S. military personnel and their families from predatory financial products, the Military Lending Act received a much-needed update to close loopholes often exploited by shady lenders to skirt the rules and put the financial lives of servicemembers at risk. [More]

(Brian Turner)

Payment Processor Pleads Guilty After Allowing Fake Payday Lenders To Raid Bank Accounts

If a payment processor — the intermediary between a merchant and the banks — facilitates transactions that it knows aren’t on the up-and-up, it’s not just a no-no; it’s a federal offense. Just ask the California man who pleaded guilty to wire fraud for enabling the operators of fake payday loan sites to steal money from consumers’ bank accounts. [More]

Operators Of Massive Payday Loan Scheme Banned From Industry

Operators Of Massive Payday Loan Scheme Banned From Industry

The masterminds behind a massive payday loan scheme have agreed to be banned from the consumer lending industry to settle federal regulators’ charges they bilked millions of dollars from customers by trapping them into loans that were never authorized. [More]

Here's snippet of the consumer narrative database.

CFPB Publishes More Than 7,700 Detailed Financial Grievances To Public-Facing Database

Sharing your nightmare experience with a financial institution, product or service could help another consumer avoid such dastardly situations. And from the looks of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s new public-facing Consumer Complaint Database, people have a lot to share. [More]

Pennsylvania Man Charged With Racketeering Related To Massive Payday Loan Scheme

Pennsylvania Man Charged With Racketeering Related To Massive Payday Loan Scheme

A life of stealing started with the snatching of a candy bar and transformed into an illegal multi-million dollar online payday lending scheme that allegedly defrauded thousands of people. At least that’s what federal prosecutors say led to charges against a Pennsylvania man recently. [More]

Fifth Third To Close 100 Branches To Focus On Mobile Banking

Fifth Third To Close 100 Branches To Focus On Mobile Banking

Customers of Fifth Third Bank will have fewer options when it comes to doing business at a physical location as the company plans to close or consolidate 100 branches and scrap plans to open 30 new locations. [More]

Scott Cimakosky

Abusive Lending Practices Can Lead To Negative Long-Term Consequences For Borrowers, Communities

Every year, more than 12 million Americans spend $17 billion on payday loans, despite the fact research has shown these costly lines of credit often leave borrowers worse off. Yet abusive lending practices are not relegated to borrowers in need of a couple hundred dollars to stay afloat until their next paycheck; there are mortgages, car loans, and other traditional lines of credit that can leave the borrower in a bind. Even if you never find yourself on the wrong end of a predatory loan, these products can still be a drain on your entire community. [More]

Pew Charitable Trusts Illustrates The Devastating Effects Of Payday Lending, How It Can Be Fixed

Pew Charitable Trusts Illustrates The Devastating Effects Of Payday Lending, How It Can Be Fixed

Back in March, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau took its first long-awaited step in reining in the payday loan industry by releasing an outline for potential regulations over the small-dollar lines of credit known to thrust consumers into a devastating cycle of debt. While consumer groups were quick to applaud the steps, they also expressed concern that more could be done to protect people from the devastating consequences of such loans. This week, Pew Charitable Trusts released a video detailing the predicament nearly 12 million Americans face every year when taking out payday loans and how regulators might be able to find an answer. [More]