CUs Urged To Expand Payday Lending

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WASHINGTON-Rep. Maxine Waters, the Democratic chair of the House Financial Subcommittee on Housing, called on credit unions to add payday lending to their service offerings to pose as an alternative to existing high-cost services.

"I am depending on credit unions to take over the payday loan business and create and opportunity for people that won't gauge them," said Waters, a long-time champion of the underserved in her southern California district.

"Some of you have been successful in tapping into this market," said Waters, referring to Kinecta FCU, the Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based credit union that has become one of the biggest payday lenders in the area following its 2007 acquisition of Nix Check Cashing.

Waters also insisted that CUs have nothing to fear from the new Consumer Financial Protection Board, because the agency is aimed elsewhere, at bad actors in the market. She said most credit unions, those under $10 billion in assets, were specifically exempted form the examination and enforcement functions of the new agency. "We did this to protect credit unions and small banks," she stated.

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