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Shortchanged by Howard Karger

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Anyone who has ever struggled with poverty knows how extremely expensive it is to be poor.–James A. Baldwin

5Storefront Loans: Pawnshops, Payday Loans, and Tax Refund Lenders

All of us need cash at one time or another, and the cost of raising it depends on who’s asking for it. For creditworthy consumers, cash is secured through bank lines of credit, overdraft protection, signature or home equity loans, or credit card cash withdrawals. For those with compromised credit, the essential condition for raising cash is a “no-credit-check” transaction, which translates into a high-interest predatory loan.66

Collateral-based cash loans serve the same purpose for the poor as bank overdrafts or credit card cash advances do for the middle class. Namely, ...

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