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NCJ Number: 65565 Find in a Library
Title: ILLEGAL PRACTICES IN EXTENDING CREDIT
Journal: MONATSSCHRIFT FUER KRIMINOLOGIE UND STRAFRECHTSREFORM  Volume:60  Issue:2  Dated:(APRIL 1977)  Pages:107-118
Author(s): H H KUEHNE
Corporate Author: Carl Heymanns Verlag
Germany (Unified)
Date Published: 1977
Page Count: 12
Sponsoring Agency: Carl Heymanns Verlag
5 Cologne 1, Germany United
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: RESULTS ARE REPORTED OF A WEST GERMAN UNIVERSITY STUDY OF ILLEGAL PRACTICES BY CREDIT AGENCIES IN THE SAARBRUECKEN-SAARLOUIS AREA.
Abstract: THE CLIENTS OF SUCH AGENCIES ARE GENERALLY POORLY SITUATED CITIZENS WHO CAN BE SEVERLY DAMAGED BY FINANCIAL LOSSES. ANALYSIS OF NEWSPAPER ADS BY CREDIT AGENCIES SHOWS THAT THEIR PROMISES ARE EXAGGERATED AND DIRECTED AT INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE HAD LITTLE CONTACT WITH FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS. FINDINGS OF REPEATED VISITS TO AGENCIES BY STUDENTS POSING AS POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS ESTABLISH THAT CREDIT AGENCY LOANS ARE NEITHER SIMPLER NOR FASTER THAN LOANS FROM BANKS, THAT CREDIT COSTS ARE HIGHER THAN COSTS FROM BANKS (13 CHARGED TWICE AS MUCH AS BANKS), AND THAT INADEQUATE INFORMATION IS GIVEN TO CLIENTS ABOUT CREDIT TERMS. INVESTIGATION OF POSSIBLE CRIMINAL OFFENSES INDICATES THAT ADVERTISEMENTS OF 11 AGENCIES ARE MISLEADING IN NEGLECTING TO STATE THAT CREDIT IS ARRANGED, NOT SUPPLIED BY THE AGENCY, AND THAT 15 OF THE AGENICES ARE GUILTY OF VIOLATIONS OF PROVISIONS AGAINST MISREPRESENTING PRICES IN THEIR ADS (E.G., BY PROMISING TO EXAMINE THE POTENTIAL CLIENT'S SITUATION MORE DISCRETELY AND WITH LESS STRINGENT STANDARDS THAN BANKS). DESPITE THIS CLEAR TENDENCY TOWARD CRIMINAL ACTIVITY, FEW COMPLAINTS AGAINST CREDIT AGENCIES ARE REPORTED TO THE PUBLIC PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE BECAUSE SEPARATE VIOLATIONS ARE DIFFICULT TO PROVE AND BECAUSE THE INTENDED CLIENTS ARE POORLY INFORMED. PROVING FALSE ADVERTISING PRACTICES SHOULD BE FAIRLY SIMPLE, AND THE PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE COULD POSSIBLY PROSECUTE CREDIT AGENCIES FOR USURIOUS CREDIT CHARGES IF COURTS COOPERATE. AS CREDIT AGENCIES DEPEND ON PUBLIC IGNORANCE AND COOPERATION OF BANKS FOR THEIR EXISTENCE, BOTH BANKS AND THE GOVERNMENT WOULD SERVE THE PUBLIC WELL BY PROVIDING GENERAL INFORMATION ON CREDIT TERMS AND CONDITIONS. NOTES ARE APPLIED. --IN GERMAN. (KMD)
Index Term(s): Credit fraud; Deceptive advertising; Financial institutions; Germany; Indigents; Laws and Statutes; Loan sharking; Public information; Studies
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=65565

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