‘Socially irresponsible’ loan firm advert banned

An ADVERT for a company which promised £2,000 loans in just ten minutes with an APR of 278 per cent has been banned for being “socially irresponsible”.

The ad, for personal loan firm Pounds to Pocket, told viewers: “No paperwork. No guarantor… No surprises or hidden fees, just fixed payments over 12 months.”

It also featured an individual saying: “I was turned down by the mainstream lenders. I wish I’d gone to Pounds to Pocket first, as their application was fast and simple.”

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The ad drew three complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority.

One viewer said that the APR of 278 per cent, which was shown in small print, was not featured prominently enough.

Two more questioned whether the “I was turned down by mainstream lenders” claim was misleading 
and socially irresponsible, 
as it portrayed Pounds to Pocket as a preferable option despite its interest rates being higher.

Pounds to Pocket said that the APR was prominently included in the legal text, where applicable, and was held on screen for longer than the minimum on-screen hold time required.

It said the “I wish I’d gone to Pounds to Pockets first” claim represented actual customer comments about its service.

The firm argued that the reference to fast and simple related to the application process rather than the loan product itself.

But the ASA upheld both complaints.