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OneMain, a subsidiary of Citigroup, is the biggest personal loan provider in the USA.  They lend a maximum of $6,000 ( € 5,309.73 ) to personal customers from terms of a few months to a few years. The number two company is Springleaf and they have been given permission to buy OneMain for $4.25billion. Announcing the deal last March, Springleaf will wind up with 1,800 branches across the US and only last Friday reached agreement with the US Department of Justice on the sale following an anti-trust lawsuit.

Short term, high interest term loans have been the root cause of financial stress for many families. Provident Finance, operating for over 90 years, is Ireland’s biggest provider of similar such short-term loans. Their maximum is € 500 but caveat emptor…their €500 loan repayable over 52 weeks will require 52 weekly payments of €15.00. Rate of interest 56.0% p.a. fixed which is representative of 157.3% APR and the total amount payable is €780.


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