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Quick Cash: The Story of the Loan Shark Hardcover – November 15, 2010

5 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“The subject is important, the research exhaustive, the argument compelling, the writing is brisk and clear…. Quick Cash is a major contribution to public discussions of subprime lending and borrowing. It deserves to be on the reading list of everyone who cares about recent developments in lending and borrowing…. Mayer establishes himself as the expert on the subject of subprime consumer credit, especially payday lending.”—Lendol Calder, Augustana College



“The early historical chapters, which focus on American in the nineteenth and early twentieth century, are a tour de force in original source material and factual documentation. There is not currently a book or scholarly article that so carefully compiles an American historical record of triple digit interest rate consumer finance. This book will become an invaluable source for generations of policy makers and historians to come. After all, this policy problem is not going away. The problem will endure, and this book will endure with it.”—Christopher Peterson, University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law

About the Author

Robert Mayer is a professor of political science at Loyola University. He holds a Ph.D. in political theory from Princeton University.

 

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 301 pages
  • Publisher: Northern Illinois University Press; 1 edition (November 15, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0875804306
  • ISBN-13: 978-0875804309
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #803,754 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Jason Stokes VINE VOICE on August 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
After a recent trip through a rougher area of town, I began asking questions of payday loans - how do they stay in business? Why are there so many right next to each other? Who actually goes here? I jumped to Amazon, picked up a couple books - and this is the best of them. It's a full history of loan sharks from the beginning, with a particular focus on early 20th century and the modern era as true havens of these sometimes dastardly, sometimes beneficial, businesses.

Pros:
- The author takes a relatively fair approach to loan sharking, and discusses the pros and cons of the business. Ultimately, he makes a decision in one direction, but it was well-reasoned and insightful.
- The history of loan sharks is far more complex than some payday loans simply opening. Laws, regulations, and opportunities all conspired to make Payday loans (the modern loan shark) available and profitable
- Corrects some of the misconceptions about loan sharking that we all carry due to the popular media. I found this part particularly interesting.

Cons:
- The segments focused on early 20th century loan sharking drug on a bit too long, with a bit too much detail focused on Chicago in particular. Understandable, since the author is in Chicago and primary research would be much easier.
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Format: Hardcover
Mayer presents the history of the loan shark and payday loans with a particular focus on the Chicago area. It is the story of a financial product many of his readers are unlikely to use themselves, though most people have passed by countless payday loan store fronts. The book is engaging, informative and quite readable. One learns of the impacts of subprime financial products as well as various attempts to regulate the industry. While there are certainly valid concerns about those that become ensnared by debt and the resulting costs these products impose on society, I could not help but marvel at the resilience and adaptability of subprime creditors. The author also disabuses the reader of popularly held conceptions of loan sharks. By clearly working out the math involved in the multiple transactions that payday loan customers often engage in, the reader comes to understand how such patrons find themselves quickly engulfed by debt. While I normally am suspicious of restrictions on the freedom of individuals to enter into contracts of their own choosing, Mayer articulates a strong and convincing case for regulation of the industry, buttressed by cogent arguments, insightful points and a deep understanding of the raw data underlying his research. I would recommend this book to anyone desiring to learn about the subprime lending industry.
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Format: Hardcover
Although I'm not 100% in agreement with the authots points on the Payday lending industry. I do think it is a must read for anyone interested in loans and its effects on society. My personal opinion it is not entirely fair to single out the payday loan industry as banks, credit cards and many other forms of debt are equally to blame for the situation we are all living in. Since reading the book, I've had discussions with several payday loan companies and even got a response from the people at [...] regarding that status of the industry and their take on payday loans in America. Generally, they have many customers that by and large repay their loans when due and have also indicated that their are few financial companies that will help some people who just can't make it to their next payday loan. They struck me as a reasonable company to get a loan and I suppose there are others out there that will equally treat their customers well. All in all, reading the book started some good critical thinking and talk amungst friends who had a variety of things to say on the subject of cash loan lending. Again, check the book out is was well written! I enjoyed.
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