Debt settlement companies lobbying Ohio for entry into the state
Companies that charge up-front fees for working with consumers to settle tens of thousands of dollars in credit-card debt are pushing for a bill in the lame duck legislative session that would allow them to operate in Ohio.
The “debt settlement” industry has been advocating for legislation in Ohio for five years and hopes to be successful this time around, said lobbyist Rick Oxender, who represents the 40-member American Fair Credit Council.
“They want to be licensed. They want to keep bad apples out. They want regulations and they want consumer protections in place,” Oxender said.
But opponents, including the Ohio Poverty Law Center and Policy Matters Ohio, are warning that what the debt settlement industry wants is permission to operate in Ohio outside the state’s consumer protection laws already in place.
“They want to legalize a loophole and be able to charge a lot up front,” said David Rothstein of Policy Matters Ohio, a non-partisan, left-leaning think tank in Cleveland.
Survey: 45% of Americans would prefer to skip Christmas
Some 45 percent of those polled said the holiday season brings so much financial pressure, they would prefer to skip it altogether. Almost half said their level of stress related to holiday expenses is high or extremely high.
That’s probably because nearly the same amount — some 45 percent — say they do not expect to have enough money set aside to cover holiday expenses.
NY attorney general files suit against Credit Suisse over mortgage securities sales
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a Martin Act complaint against the bank for leading its investors to believe that the quality of the securities sold before 2008 were carefully vetted and would be closely monitored, according to the complaint filed in New York State Supreme Court.
“This lawsuit against Credit Suisse marks another significant step in our efforts to hold financial institutions accountable for the misconduct that led to the worst financial crisis in nearly a century,” Schneiderman said.
“Our investigations and legal actions demonstrate that there must be one set of rules for all, no matter how big or powerful the institution may be, and that those rules will be enforced vigorously.”
The complaint argues that Credit Suisse failed to adequately evaluate the loans, ignored defects uncovered by its limited review and kept investors in the dark about the lack of depth of its review and problems with the securities.
In turn, the sales the securities sold in 2006 and 2007 led to losses of about $11.2 billion, or approximately 12 percent of total initial balances of $93.8 billion.
The items above caught my attention and I thought I should share them with you. To read the full articles, click on the links at the end of the excerpts.