Payday loan boss: Rivals are unethical

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The Independent Online

A payday loan site boss has attacked the "unethical practices" of rivals. Jason Gardiner, founder of FridayFriday, has called for regulators to crack down on lenders which encourage borrowers to endlessly roll-over debts.

Mr Gardiner said: "I believe that many companies in the industry try to maximise their returns by adding additional charges and interest to loans that have defaulted. The net result of this to the consumer is more debt and certainly a lot more stress.

"This also creates a spiral effect where ultimately lenders end up owing in multiples of what they originally borrowed, making what was originally a short-term financial solution into a long-term debt nightmare."

This week the most high-profile payday loan firm Wonga announced soaring profits and a big increase in the number of loans being taken out. The figures have fuelled worries that firms are preying on vulnerable people that can't really afford credit.

However, Independent reader David Humphrey thinks that tighter regulation is not the answer. "Instead, any lender that wants to use the courts to enforce repayment of any form of loan must be forced to show that it did not behave recklessly when the loan was granted," he said.

"The move would mean no complicated rules to provide a feast of opportunity for nit-picking lawyers. Just a simple one-line piece of legislation, a few court decisions and no further problem," suggested Mr Humphrey.

Could it really be that simple?

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