Govt chance to reel in loan sharks

NZ Herald May 31, 2010

Politicians will have the opportunity next month to strike a small – but important – blow against loan sharks. Fringe lenders in New Zealand prey on low-income people in poorer communities, seeking out the most vulnerable members of society and exploiting their desperate circumstances. People on benefits or in casual work, people without assets and people with poor credit histories are regarded by banks and other top tier lenders as unattractive risk propositions. This means that such borrowers are in practice forced into the clutches of fringe lenders, who charge exorbitant interest rates and fees and may employ standover tactics to recover their loans.