Newsletter - Media Review
AABF Commenting on Key Media Issues
January 2018/ Martin Rutland
Evidence of just how quickly the Association established itself as the authoritative voice for alternative lenders is how swiftly the media has sought our views on key industry issues.
New Standards of Lending Practice
This was a great opportunity to welcome the new standards but, importantly, to stress that our four key operating principles (Security, Transparency, Fairness, Responsibility) and the commitments that underpin them were drawn form the original Lending Code. This type of positive endorsement has helped us establish a good relationship with the Lending Standards Board.
CMA APR proposals
In June the influential publication AltFi.com got wind of the fact that the CMA was planning to require lenders specialising in unsecured loans and overdrafts of up to £25k for SMEs to use annual APRs to show the cost of these products. The 'rumoured' implementation was August. You will see from the article that we welcomed transparency, pointed out the shortcomings of a broad APR comparison and called for a 'total cost' approach that SMEs could easily understand.
We followed up with the CMA and they did confirm the August date. When questioned on plans for announcing this they asked if the AABF could play a key role in making alternative finance providers aware of the planned changes and implementation date!
Bank Referral Scheme
This is a topic that really gets members' attention as it is clear the scheme isn't working and in the article below you will see we advocated that before jumping in with solutions it was important to understand what the blockages really are.
The man the HM Treasury has charged with doing this is Professor Russell Griggs. He has agreed to meet with us so we can share members' views/experiences with the current scheme. This meeting was scheduled for mid January but Glasgow snow prevented Professor Griggs planned London visit. An alternative date is being fixed and we have plenty of evidence on 'blockages' to present him with.
Increasingly the AABF has been approached on general industry issue and below is a typical example. In this case it was 'Industry Consolidation'.
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