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Payday Sharks – Navajo Times


Shop around for payday loans – or use a bank, credit union

Special at The Times | Ray landry
Loan companies serve clients in Tse Bonito, New Mexico.


In the late 1990s, the biggest problem with credit was its inaccessibility to communities of color and low-income families, according to an article published by the American Bar Association.

A few years later, in 2005, the problem would change: the credit became too assessable.

“Today, due to technological advancements and changes in the marketplace, many of these same populations are bombarded with offers from subprime mortgage lenders, check tellers, payday lenders and other fringe bankers.” , Nikitra Bailey, vice president of the Center for Responsible The Loan, said in his article. “Credit in the United States is now more widely available than ever. Yet this expansion has been accompanied by a sharp increase in predatory lending.

The border towns near the reserve are rife with small loan companies offering loans at high interest rates.

For example, Tse Bonito, a small community on the New Mexico-Arizona border with a population of 180, is home to two small loan companies. Gallup is over 20, and Farmington is pretty much the same according to New Mexico Legal Aid attorney Cassie Fleming.

“McKinley County has the highest number of small loans per county compared to the rest of New Mexico,” Fleming said. “This means there is a lot of money flowing from our residents here in McKinley Country to the bank accounts of small lenders.”

Cassie gave a presentation at the Consumer Rights Workshop in Gallup, New Mexico last month. The Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission hosted the event.

One of the goals of the workshop: “How to get off, what we call the little treadmill on loan and stay out if you’re not there yet,” Fleming said.

New Mexico defines small loans as less than $ 5,000.

“It could be lenders that you see in malls or in linear malls along the freeway,” Fleming said. “They can also be loans that you get online. These can be loans that you get associated with filing your taxes.


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