African-Americans, Renters, Divorcees Likely to Use Payday Loans
In many cities, neon "payday loan" signs are ubiquitous in storefront windows and might go unnoticed by most passersby. But a new survey should make more people take notice of who's using those loans, how much they're borrowing, and the costs that can come with quick cash.
According to a study from the Safe Small-Dollar Loans Research Project at the Pew Charitable Trusts, roughly 5.5 percent of U.S. adults spend $7.4 billion annually at payday lenders. Those nearly 12 million annual borrowers tend to use the short-term loans in different ways than lenders market them.
"Although payday loans are marketed as short-term emergency loans, in reality, most borrowers used them for recurring living expenses and become indebted for an average of five months," says Nick Bourke, project director of Pew's Safe Small-Dollar Loans Research.
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