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Data for today’s episode is provided by Mercator Advisory Group’s Viewpoint: Buy Now Pay Later Lending: The Time to Regulate is Now
Australia Takes the Lead in Buy Now Pay Later Regulation:
- Fintechs often operate in a regulatory gray zone: by definition not a bank with looser requirements and answerable to investors vs. regulators.
- Regulators in Australia are considering buy now pay later regulation as the industry outpaces credit card growth.
- A November 2020 report indicated that interest-free status of BNPL lending might not be clear to customers: there are fees and delinquency charges.
- 63% of the firm ZipMoney’s revenue comes from “other consumer fees,” while 96% of Brighte’s revenue comes from merchant fees.
- The AISC finds that with fully 20% of consumers in delinquent status, it suggests lending standards are too loose.
- The AISC appropriately rejects the concept of industry self-regulation as an effective method to codify lending strategies.
The new payment option enjoys significant growth in many markets, but consumers need better protection for fair lending, pricing, and remedies.
Consumers sometimes find interest-free loans come with unanticipated fees and charges. As in every other form of consumer lending, clarity, fairness, and transparency are not optional.