I had the opportunity to attend the 2017 Consumer Federation of America (CFA) annual financial services conference in Washington D.C. The sessions included financial services for lower-income households, the future of payday lending, student loan scandals, credit scoring models, fintech, and fiduciary rule just to name. I will touch on several of the sessions I attended and what you can do in your community to help spread the knowledge.
Payday lending has been a hot topic in the financial services field. There are numerous stories of individuals falling into the payday lending trap such as taking a $2500 loan turning into a $50,000 debt. States have started to act against payday lenders, but the problem continues with payday lenders pushing the federal government to protect their business.
However, credit unions have been taking action with offering similar loans without the excessive interest rate and limit on the times a loan can be taken out. Financial institutions such as credit unions can help the general public by offering loans at low interest, limit on amount borrowed, and the number of times a loan can be issued to the individual
The American consumer is facing a tremendous crisis with student loans. It is not just the typical college graduating with $50,000 in student loan debt now we are including parents and grandparents carrying student loan debt from co-signing on a student loan.
Jeff Herwitz from the Associated Press commented on the crisis by saying, "the U.S. Department is a big pool of loans" and I don't doubt the comment about the U.S. Department of Education.
The current presidential administration is putting restrictions on students loans forgiven who were defrauded by for-profit institutions.
An invisible credit person is the person does not have any credit score at any of the three top credit bureaus (e.g., Experian, Equifax, TransUnion). A growing number of millennial students are credit-invisible, and it is becoming a problem because such individuals are finding it difficult to rent an apartment or purchase a vehicle without having a co-signer and even car insurance rates are being based off on credit score.
To generate a credit score an individual needs to have a minimum of three tradelines which includes installment credit (e.g., student loan), revolving credit (e.g., credit card), and open credit (e.g., home utility bill) and it take a minimum of six months to establish credit.
Payday lending is bad, student loans are pushing marriages further down, and recent college students are becoming the new credit invisible. The conference had informative information, and now it is the duty of financial institutions, educators, reporters, and community leaders to educate people when it comes to financial issues and financially empowers them for the future.
How will you become financially empowered?
Mr. J Real Talk
Educator and blogger. Follow Mr.J @MrJRealTalk