Google Bans Ads for Payday Loans

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Google has announced that as of 13th July, ads which promote high interest payday loans requiring repayment within 60 days will be banned.

The AdWords policy update also includes a ban on ads for high-interest loans with 36% APR or higher in the USA. David Graff, Google’s Director of Global Product Policy said in a blog post on Wednesday that the change in policy “is designed to protect our users from deceptive or harmful financial products”, adding that it “will not affect companies offering loans such as Mortgages, Car Loans, Student Loans, Commercial loans, Revolving Lines of Credit (e.g. Credit Cards).”

Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights says that the policy “addresses many of the longstanding concerns shared by the entire civil rights community about predatory payday lending”.

Google’s policy change could have more of an impact on curbing the industry than government regulation, so the announcement has been met with criticism from Lisa McGreevy, president of the Online Lenders Association, who said “it’s disappointing that a site created to help give users full access to information is making arbitrary choices on the advertisements users are allowed to see from legal businesses”.

However, it’s worth noting that only lenders that fall into the short-term high-interest category will be affected by this policy.

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