I find it interesting to see how di This was an impulsive grab while at the library. It's not as simple as belie Eye opening and thought provoking. Today nearly half of all Americans live from paycheck to paycheck, and income volatility has doubled over the past thirty years. Another interesting fact is that even though payday loans are illegal in some states, there exist more payday loan stores in America than the combined total of McDonalds and Starbucks outlets! Required reading for fans of muckraking authors like Barbara Ehrenreich, this fascinating look at the future of money management insists that the ever-growing number of the 'unbanked' are a sector deserving of respect and solid options. She actually went out into the filed to get first hand experience and talk to people using these services. As an aside, I follow a budgeting forum and remember a comment from a trucker, who was rejected for a bank account, because he did not have a permanent address.
Unlike so many academics - who just theorize - she lived her story. This book is well worth reading for anyone interested in income i There's little understanding among the general public, or even our policy makers, on the growing role payday lenders and check cashing businesses are playing in America. Servon's book shows us that programs aimed at closing the divide are creating pathways out of poverty for many low-income technology users, who are acquiring career skills, educational advantages, and new knowledge that can lead to living-wage jobs. When you have to pay your construction workers, but can not wait until the money is transferred into your bank account, you go to an alternative financial service provider like a check casher. I had it all figured out, that they are a scourge that should be eliminated immediately. But when the owner of several payday loan providers came to speak to her class, she heard a different story: this business served the community. Today nearly half of all Americans live from paycheck to paycheck, and income volatility has doubled over the past thirty years.
It seems I was not alone in my fascination with the topic as Lisa Servon recently released a new book about the payday loan industry and beyond titled. Banks, with their monthly fees and high overdraft charges, take advantage of these fluctuations rather than help their customers manage them. Servon's book explores the positive aspects of check cashing firms - transparent fees, immediate cash no holds until the deposit clears , fees and policies posted in clear language, convenient locations and hours, personalized service. As she describes, commercial banks now cater largely to the wealthy, and more Americans are turning to alternative financial services, including check cashers, payday lenders, and a variety of informal arrangements. Many people would rather deal with a neighborhood storefront that doesn't require signing an unreadable contract to open an account. I've never experienced with delays in having access to money I deposit, or penalties for low balances aside from overdrafts. According to Servon, they use payday loan services, check cashing companies, and informal networks within their neighbourhoods - options that seem expensive - even foolish - to those who use regular banking services which are also far more expensive than in years past , but they do so both out of necessity and because those alternative systems serve their needs well.
For this and other reasons, about 8% of Americans unbanked, and another 20% underbanked. Growing numbers of the middle class are also using them. The individual stories lacked depth, context and a compelling voice. Lisa Servon, begs to differ, she takes us on a imitate look at how these companies function with the communities they serve. The only way to guarantee that all of us will have the ability to achieve financial health is for the government to intervene.
If you are living financially on the edge, these services are actually cheaper to use than banks. Fascinating to see how communities can find ways to help each other. PennDesign has been named the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design in recognition of Mr. For that, I think it's good. In order to make the broader public more aware of the issues, we have to go mainstream like writing for The New Yorker.
The essence of the book is why low-income people go to payday lenders even though they are perceived to be predatory. Quick link to Tax Statistics, where you will find a wide range of tables, articles, and data that describe and measure elements of the U. One issue at a time! This is not a story of despair however. Finally, customer service and assistance were much more personal at alternative institutions than traditional banks. Fortunately, this is a case in which treating the symptom may help cure the disease.
He stayed with relatives and friends. One program, Women's Initiative, targets very low income women in the San Francisco Bay Area and requires all clients to undergo three months of training before they can apply for a loan. Set in the United States, it talks about the underbanked population. I don't dispute the claim that other people including the government and other institutions can I didn't actually finish because this book was a bit unbearable to read. We would let people know if it was illegal to borrow funds online. In this way, banks maximized overdraft fees while increasing the cost to the consumer.
Maybe more from former large bank employees and more explanation of why they operate they do would have been helpful. For one the book is pretty short, with a large part at the end being a bibliography which is fine, but the book kind of ends abruptly. This book has one important observation: people who use these services In The Unbanking of America, Lisa Servon, a professor of urban planning, takes a dive into alternative financial services. I haven't seen manipulation of check resequencing; on the contrary, I think there have been occasions where banks have been generous about sequencing debits vs. However it also falls short in some areas. This was a fairly easy read, with some interesting facts and observations, I wouldn't strongly recommend it but if y An interesting account of alternative financial options, why they're used, who's using them, and a breaking of the stigma that surrounds some of these services payday lenders, check cashers.
All things considered, it is an admirable survey, and one that has the feel of a longer scholarly work condensed into an easy to digest plebian work on the difficulties of the middle class in our society. Rather it is the banks that implicitly come across as predatory, essentially exiling a large swath of the population to a higher cost, but welcoming and service oriented alternative. He compelled me to try and understand why people are using alternative financial services. Policy makers became concerned when seeing the numbers of the unbanked and underbanked, because it was thought essential to have a bank account. A colleague also gave me introductions to people. How did you start working as a check casher in New York? The Unbanking of America provides an in-depth look at these people and services.