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Financial Product Innovations & Trends Rural Family Economic Success Institute November 2, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "Financial Product Innovations & Trends Rural Family Economic Success Institute November 2, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 Financial Product Innovations & Trends Rural Family Economic Success Institute November 2, 2009

2 Financial Product Innovations & Trends  Low-income people need financial services! They must be a good market, or the predatory lenders wouldn’t serve them!  Some financial institutions are bringing better products on line to serve the low-income market.

3 A Sampling: Products to Consider and Promote  Pre-paid cards  Low cost check cashing  Credit builder products  Low cost payday lending  Free tax filing & other options to RALs

4 Pre-paid Cards  Consumers can load their money on the card at participating banks, check-cashing facilities or credit unions.  Pre-Paid cards can be used to pay bills, mortgages and purchase groceries, or to buy products on line.  No overdrafts are permitted.  Pre-paid cards allow consumers to securely carry on vital financial transactions without an active checking account or a without a credit check  You can monitor your card uses and balances on line.

5 Pre-paid Cards  Check local banks, credit unions or others to see if they offer them.  Online account provider: netSpend  Local vendor that helps set up prepaid card services: Pemco

6 Alternatives to Check Cashing  About 106 million Americans do not have bank accounts.  Many are on Chex Systems and cannot obtain an account. Chex Systems: a national reporting system that rates people’s check-writing reliability like a credit report  Check cashing stores used to be their only option…  … but their fees are very high

7 Alternatives to Check Cashing  Some banks and credit unions are creating lower cost products and services to help these consumers conduct transactions.  Checkless checking accounts offer low-cost check cashing services for second chance customers. They charge lower fees per check, much less than “ traditional ’ check-cashing stores. Customers have the opportunity to open new accounts.

8 Alternatives to Check Cashing Checkless Checking Example  Key Bank checkless-account.html

9 Alternatives to Check Cashing  Get Checking A financial education course that “certifies” customers can operate a checking account Used by Consumer Credit Counseling Services Program is designed to help consumers on Chex Systems become eligible for 2 nd chance accounts Six hour seminar Students must settle all existing debts and not have any fraudulent marks on their Chex Systems report before they get certified.

10 Alternatives to Check Cashing  Get Checking help/get-checking.php help/get-checking.php

11 Credit Building  Many unbanked and underbanked people have poor credit or no credit at all.  Poor credit is “a gift that keeps on giving” Affects ability to get loans, buy homes, rent apartments, in some cases get jobs  One answer is a credit builder CD No-risk loan (to the lender) that help customers rebuild credit and build assets Customer takes out loan to buy a CD The CD is pledged as collateral to secure the loan Customer pays off the loan – Regular loan payments go on their credit record When paid off customer has both savings (the CD) and a better credit record.

12 Credit Building  Southern Good Faith Fund  CitiBank

13 Alternatives to Payday Lending  Payday lending is the practice of making revolving, short-term loans at a high cost -- targeting those who can least afford it.  As of 2005, there were: 23,000 payday loans outlets nationwide Over $40 billion in loan volume Over $6 billion in finance charges.  As of 2008, 717 locations in Washington State (see 2008 Payday Lending Report for more)

14 Alternatives to Payday Lending  Credit unions are leading the way in providing lower cost alternatives to payday loans.  Typically these programs: Offer credit union membership to borrowers Make loans without reviewing credit score or history Have a moderate maximum loan amount Short term installment loan; max term of 90 days No rollovers and additional loans are permitted May open savings account May offer financial education

15 Alternatives to Payday Lending  A Better Choice Pennsylvania Credit Union Association Harrisburg, PA  Common Cents Initiative Mountain Association for Community Economic Development Berea, KY  Stretch Loan ASI Federal Credit Union Harahan, Louisiana

16 Options to Refund Anticipation Loans (RALs)  Millions of Americans look forward to tax season. They are due a refund and have ideas for how they will spend that refund.  Commercial tax preparers capitalize on the desire of customers to receive this money quickly by offering RALs.  These loans have high annual percentage rates (APR).  And if the actual refund is smaller than the anticipated amount, the borrower still must pay the loan in full.

17 Options to Refund Anticipation Loans  As discussed earlier, free tax preparation services can save a significant amount of money for patient filers.  Other options include: Low-APR RALs offered by some banks and credit unions Electronic filing with direct deposit – almost as fast as a RAL

18 Useful Resources  Center for Financial Services Innovation  Community Development Banking Listserv E-mail with subscribe in the subject line

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