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  1. A price cap to help consumers who use "rent-to-own" firms to buy goods is a possibility, the head of the City regulator has said. Andrew Bailey, the chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), said a cap would be considered as part of its inquiry into high-cost credit. Up to 400,000 people use rent-to-own firms to buy household appliances, paying the money back over three years. After interest, they can end up paying three times the original price. It follows a call for a cap from Citizens Advice, which said restrictions imposed on payday lenders two years ago had been a success. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-38132843 FCA review “opportunity” to protect more high cost credit customers Rent to own services, logbook loans and guarantor loans should be included in the FCA’s payday loan cap - and new rules introduced to provide added protections for customers including full checks to make sure people can afford to pay back what they have borrowed says Citizens Advice. The Financial Conduct Authority has today launched a call for evidence on how the wider high cost credit market is working - including rent to own, guarantor and logbook loans - to find out how firms are treating their customers. It follows the regulator’s action to clean up the payday loan market, which included a cap on interest rates and fees introduced in January 2015. The national charity had published a new report today finding rent to own customers are getting trapped in debt due to problems such as high interest rates and additional fees, inadequate affordability checks and inflexible debt collection practices. Since the introduction of the cap on payday loan interest and fees in January 2015, Citizens Advice has helped people with 45% fewer payday loan problems. https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/about-us/how-citizens-advice-works/media/press-releases/fca-review-opportunity-to-protect-more-high-cost-credit-customers/
  2. Consumers who are forced to have prepayment energy meters put in should face a maximum installation fee of £150, the regulator has proposed. Currently such energy users - already the most vulnerable to debt - face a charge of up to £900, said Ofgem. As many as 4.5 million people use prepayment meters for electricity, while 3.5 million use them for gas. Ofgem is suggesting that the maximum fee should be between £100 and £150. For particularly vulnerable consumers, such as those in financial hardship or those with health issues, it says there should be no charge at all. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-37349013 Ofgem is now inviting comments and responses to its plans before it finalises them in Novembe and. has published a series of proposals
  3. Insurance premiums may be cut by plan to cap cost of courtesy cars Regulator wants to stop insurers from inflating repair and hire costs, which are passed on to at-fault driver after an accident Motorists could see their insurance premiums fall following proposals by the competition watchdog to cap the over-inflated prices insurers charge for courtesy cars. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), which superseded the Competition Commission earlier this year, wants to end the widespread practice that sees the insurer of an innocent driver inflate the costs of car repair and car hire that are then passed on the insurer of the at-fault driver, following a road accident. The practice can add as much as £1,000 on to the cost of a replacement car compared with the price an insurer would have paid if they had taken liability for the cost of the car hire themselves. This extra cost is ultimately passed on to all motorists, not just the at-fault drivers, in their insurance premiums. http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/jun/12/insurance-premiums-cap-cost-courtesy-cars The measures include: a cap on the charges passed to the insurer of an at-fault driver in an accident for the cost of providing a replacement vehicle to the non-fault driver, to more closely reflect the costs incurred and remove significant inefficiencies better information for consumers about their rights following an accident a ban on price parity agreements between price comparison websites (PCWs) and insurers which stop insurers from making their products available to consumers elsewhere more cheaply better information for consumers on the costs and benefits of no-claims bonus protection a recommendation that the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) looks at how insurers inform consumers about other PMI-related add-on products https://www.gov.uk/government/news/cma-sets-out-changes-for-private-motor-insurance
  4. http://news.sky.com/story/1173188/payday-loans-to-be-capped-by-government
  5. Read this article and you will be flabbergasted! Click on this link. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2238017/UK-gives-19million-aid-South-Africa--president-spends-17-5million-palace.html
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