Money Minute: Payday Lender ACE Cash Express Pays Up
If you took out a loan from ACE Cash Express you may be entitled to a refund.
ACE Cash Express, a so-called "payday lender," which provides small loans with very high interest rates that must be repaid quickly, is accused of harassing customers. The company allegedly falsely told borrowers they could be sued if they didn't pay back their loans which effectively caused many of them to sign up for new loans. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau said this lead to a cycle of perpetual debt where many borrowers ended up paying more in fees than the original loan. The company is being fined $10 million, $5 million of which is to be given back to its customers and it must cease its unfair practices. ACE Cash Express hasn't admitted to any wrongdoing.
If you're the parent of a child who likes video games on Amazon.com (AMZN), you might be eligible for a refund as well. The Federal Trade Commission has launched a lawsuit against Amazon accusing it of illegally charging parents for items bought by their kids in Kindle Fire games. It is illegal because Amazon is supposed to get their parents consent before allowing the purchases to go through. Amazon earns 30 percent of all those purchases. The FTC says internal documents show that employees of Amazon were aware that children were making these purchases without a password and the situation was "a near house on fire." But the company allegedly did nothing to rectify the problem. Earlier this year Apple (AAPL) paid $32.5 million to settle similar charges. The Amazon lawsuit seeks refunds for all parents impacted.
Here on Wall Street on Thursday, the major indexes sold off on worries about Portugal's largest bank, Banco Espirito Santo. The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) dropped 70 points, the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) slipped 22 points and Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) fell 8 points.
For years unions have been on the decline in the United States but organized labor has just scored one win. The United Auto Workers Union is opening a new chapter for workers at the sole Volkswagen manufacturing plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee. You might remember this same plant voted not to join the union back in February. The new chapter is voluntary which means workers won't be obliged to join, and the union won't have any bargaining rights but that could change if a majority of workers sign up. The UAW is also going to try and open a local chapter near the Daimler Mercedes-Benz plant in Alabama.
Three new reports say the Affordable Care Act has achieved one of its primary goals: to lower the rate of uninsured people. While the results of the three reports showed slightly different numbers, the theme was the same: the percentage of uninsured people has plummeted since the introduction of Obamacare. People with low and moderate incomes and Latinos were most likely to sign up to the new plans.
-Produced by Karina Huber.
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