James Moore: Like it or not, legal loan shark's time has come
Outlook Loan sharking is a wonderful business to be in, especially if you can do it legally. There are more than 10 million potential customers out there that banks don't want to touch.
The fact they have been rejected by mainstream lenders suggests their finances probably aren't exactly on sound footing, so they will probably have to borrow quite regularly to make household budgets add up.
That's why Provident Financial is having such a wonderful time of it. Today's barnstorming results were driven by its Vanquis bank, whose credit cards come with interest rates more than double what you'd pay for, say, a Barclaycard and 10 points above the Barclaycard designed for those without a credit history.
But an APR of 40 per cent (base rates are at 0.5 per cent, by the way) is positively mild when compared with the group's home credit products. It's the wonga.com of the age before the internet, not that it needs the internet.
At the interim stage, the group paid for a comical interview (the sycophantic interviewer does a very impressive job of finding new ways to say impressive) to enable chief executive Peter Crook to outline the group's expansion plans. He is delivering on those, so it's a fair bet that the Crook household won't have cause to use Provvie Products, unless it plans to open a private bank sometime in the future.
Provvie has been cited, very negatively, by charities such as Barnardo's. Its rates are ruinous, and it has already had one kicking from the Office of Fair Trading. But it is a business whose time has come. And if you can't maintain a perfect credit rating, it's coming for you.
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
Panic Saturday: 13 million Britons spend £1.2bn – while 13 million others across the country live in poverty unable to afford food
iJobs Money & Business
$200 - $350 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Managing Producer Office...
$125 - $225 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advi...
Up to £70,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...
Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...