Google has just fired the next shot in the war on payday loans. The notoriously high-interest loans have recently been banned from the Google Play app store, which will severely limit the access these lenders have to new customers.
This follows Google’s ban on advertising from lenders who charge over a certain amount of interest, but is protecting the consumer the real motivation?
High-Interest Loans Under Fire
In 2016 Google changed its financial services policy to restrict ads from payday loan companies. There was significant push back against this from the industry, which began to alter it’s own practices to comply with Google.
Google is such a massive part of all online marketing, it is virtually impossible to promote your business without using it. Critics from within the loan industry said that the corporate giant was trying to put them out of business. Google maintained it was looking out for their consumers.
This was part of a country-wide crackdown on high-interest loans. The Trump administration may be rolling back some Obama-era lending restrictions, but more individual states are passing laws against them.
Will They Ever Go Away?
Payday loans are already illegal in over a dozen states, but they are still permitted elsewhere. Beyond the notorious “payday loans” there are many other types of high-interest loans on the market. Other types of lending known for sky-high APR include car title loans, rent loans, and tribal loans.
That is never going to change.
There will always be businesses that ride the edge of legality, no matter how much any market is regulated, either by the government or by Google.
America is a land of innovation, and overcoming obstacles is something it does very well. There will always be new rules, new regulation, and new restrictions. There will also always be new ways to get around them.
Fortunately there is no longer a need for such high-interest payday loans. Online installment loans offer the same benefits without the endless cycle of debt!