Payday Lenders Close Many Ohio Offices

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Cincinnati (AP) -- More than a third of the payday lending offices in Ohio have closed since the industry lost a November ballot fight.

The law approved by voters places a 28 percent cap on interest rates that used to range up to almost 400 percent when computed on an annual basis.

State officials say there were about 1,600 retail payday lending locations across Ohio.

Fewer than 1,000 remain, and those are under fire from critics who want to enact even tougher rules.

Payday lenders had said the limits enacted by the legislature last year would put them out of business.

Supporters of payday lending say it sometimes is the only source of quick cash for people with credit problems.

Opponents say the high rates sometimes kept clients them in a cycle of borrowing they could never escape.

(Copyright 2009 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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