Whither Payday Loans?

Promoting the Development of Safe, Innovative Alternatives for Small-Dollar Credit

The payday loan industry has come under increased scrutiny for preying on low-income communities and communities of color and trapping them in cycles of debt. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has proposed a framework for regulating payday loans -- the first step toward federal rule making to rein in the industry.

Each year, 12 million Americans borrow nearly $50 billion through payday loans. They spend more than $7 billion annually paying the interest on these products. Consumer advocates are demanding the CFPB “stop the debt trap” while defenders of the industry have taken to Congress to attempt to override the CFPB’s proposed rule. Communities are exploring their own solutions for safe, low-cost credit working with credit unions, foundations, federal funds, and other forms of community capital. Whatever form of regulation is ultimately enacted, the financial need for cash-strapped Americans is unlikely to evaporate. What options are available to meet the needs of struggling families in ways that support their financial well-being?

Join us at New America for a discussion of these issues and for the launch of the Coalition for Safe Loan Alternatives, which seeks to highlight innovative initiatives at the community level and provide a national platform for local organizations to meet, share information, compare options, and learn from each other.

Follow the conversation only by using #SafeLoansCoalition and by following @AssetsNAF.


Justin King
Policy Director, Asset Building Program, New America


David Rothstein
Chair, Coalition for Safe Loan Alternatives
Director of Resource Development, Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland 

Doug Farry
Employee Loan Solutions 

Javier Martinez
Executive Director, Partnership for Community Action
Representative, New Mexico State House of Representatives (D-Barnillo-11) 


Anne Kim
Policy Editor, Washington Monthly
Senior Fellow, Financial Security Program