Citizens Advice urges FCA to place ‘health warning’ on payday loan adverts

Citizens Advice Bureau has urged the FCA to implement a “health warning” on payday loan adverts and to stop lenders targeting children through advertising.

CAB chief executive Gillian Guy called the practice of making payday loan adverts appealing to children “utterly unacceptable” and said lenders should be forced to display a warning about the consequences of taking out a loan.

She says: “It is utterly unacceptable for payday lenders to be running adverts that appeal to children. More and more adverts are appearing on music channels and TV stations popular with teenagers and young people as lenders try to entice the next generation of borrowers.

“We want TV viewers to take a stand against the payday loan industry by reporting irresponsible or misleading advertising. The FCA needs to introduce a clear and concise health warning on payday loan marketing which spells out the consequences of taking out a payday loan and to stop payday lenders targeting children.”

In July the Financial Ombudsman Service said the number of complaints about payday lenders more than doubled over the previous two years, but feared the increase was “only the tip of the iceberg”. A total of 794 payday lending complaints were made in the 2013/2014 financial year, compared with 296 in 2011/12.