In 2020, there were approximately 23,000 payday lenders recorded in the USA, which is roughly twice the number of McDonald’s restaurants that exist across the country.

Payday lending has grown massively in popularity over the last two decades, but newer regulations across the country aim to reduce the amount of payday lending stores in the US. These new regulations are in place to attempt to limit the amount of customers struggling to repay these particularly high cost loans.




The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau predicts that the new rules will help to stabilise the payday loan industry. They hope that this will happen with the volume of payday lenders expected to be reduced by approximately 65%. The number of payday loan stores is also expected to decrease by between 71% and 76% across the entirety of the US.

Online payday stores are also now being used more and more frequently, with $9 billion paid in payday loan fees on an annual basis. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is hoping that the usage decreases due to the Covid climate. Currently, 3% of American citizens have admitted to having needed extra financial support since the pandemic began.

As a consequence of this, these Americans have been forced to take out a payday loan, borrowed funds, taken out a loan at a pawn shop or used a deposit advance service to support themselves due to the financial struggles which have been brought about. The amount of Americans taking out payday loans has tripled as a result of the pandemic, with 6% of employees working in small businesses having accessed funds this way as opposed to 2% prior to this. Consequently, new restrictions will be put into place to prohibit those taking out loans with high interest rates unnecessarily.


Which States Have Payday Loans Available?


According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, there are currently payday loans companies based across 32 states of the US where consumers can access funds without any significant restrictions in place. This means that 200 million American citizens currently have access to payday loans within their home states.

Payday loan lenders do not exist in Arkansas, Arizona, Georgia, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina, New Mexico, West Virginia, Vermont or Pennsylvania. This is because payday lending is actually completely illegal in all of these 12 states.

Many other states permit payday lending but have restrictions in place. The District of Columbia and 16 other states in the US implement caps on interest rates at 36% or less, with the aim of preventing customers from becoming overwhelmed and unable to pay back their payday loans due to ridiculously high interest rates.

In spite of this, not all states cap their interest rates, meaning that consumers often pay much higher interest rates with the standard APR for a loan standing at 664%. This figure is approximately 40 times larger than the average credit card interest rate, which stands at 16.12%.



Which States Have The Most Payday Loan Storefronts?


One research has compiled information on payday lenders, analysing how many payday storefronts exist in each state across the US per capita. It has shown that the state of California has the most payday lender storefronts, with 2,451 in total. Tennessee is the state with the second highest number of payday loan storefronts with 1,344, and Mississippi in third place with 1,100 payday loan storefronts across the state.


See the rest of the results below:

State Number of Payday Lenders
Alabama 1,177
Alaska 22
Arizona 726
Arkansas 275
California 2,451
Colorado 577
Delaware 82
Florida 1,164
Hawaii 26
Idaho 196
Illinois 727
Indiana 117
Iowa 412
Kansas 100
Kentucky 707
Louisiana 1,009
Maine 6
Michigan 650
Minnesota 55
Mississippi 1,100
Missouri 1,257
Montana 104
Nebraska 57
Nevada 256
New Hampshire 77
New Mexico 760
North Dakota 76
Ohio 1,374
Oklahoma 397
Oregon 453
Pennsylvania 400
Rhode Island 5
South Carolina 902
South Dakota 302
Tennessee 1,344
Texas 1,675
Utah 427
Virginia 743
Washington 713
Wisconsin 439
Wyoming 77
Total 23,457



Additionally, the research has concluded that the highest concentrations of payday loan businesses per 100,000 people exist in New Mexico at 41.78, which is followed by South Dakota at 40.01 and then Mississippi at 38.67. It is typically quite easy to access a payday loan by walking into a payday loan store. The documentation which is typically provided usually consist of a valid ID, proof of income and a bank account, with consumers levying finance charges for each loan they take out. This charge includes service fees and interest.

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