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Loans on the line

Here’s one thing that President Obama and former Governor Mitt Romney agree on: the critical need for America to start and to grow businesses. But how do you get started if, like many Americans, you can’t get a bank loan?

For that matter, what if you needed credit just to pay your bills and couldn’t get it? For some 19 million households, the answer is payday loans. These loans give otherwise unqualified borrowers access to credit — but at extraordinarily high interest. Annual rates can top 400 per cent. Consumer advocates call them “predatory.” Payday lenders say they provide vital help to folks who otherwise couldn’t get any help at all.

In Missouri, there’s an effort to put an initiative on the ballot this November that would cap payday loan interest rates, as 17 other states already do. But will capping rates mean no credit at all for some Missourians? Stacey Tisdale reports.

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