Debate in the Bundestag: Better protection against high interest rates

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news Debate in the Bundestag: Better protection against high interest rates finanzen.de News always well informed Thursday, 09.10.14 , written by Cora Christine Döhn This Friday, debates in the Bundestag on a limitation of disposition and overdraft interest rates. There are applications from the Greens and the Left, which consider the cost of overdrafting at historically low interest rates unjustified. Consumer Protection Minister Heiko Maas proposes a more diplomatic solution. > Viel Geld für teure Dispozinsen Disbursing costs pull the banker's money out of his pocket

Green Party and Left Party are again campaigning for the limitation of discretionary interest and thus for the rights of bank customers on Friday. In times of historically low interest rates (0.05 percent) , they see the level of bank overdraft and overdraft rates as unjustified. Many banks demand according to the disbursement test test of Stiftung Warentest interest of over 10 percent. The highest overdraft interest rate, according to the Left Party, even stands at 22.5 percent. From the perspective of consumer protection, it is particularly critical that interest rate increases are passed on to customers much faster than interest rate cuts. In concrete terms this means that the negative interest rate developments are borne by the bank customer, but he benefits only slowly from the positive ones.

Overdrawn interest rates: Do banks bank customers pay?

Banks take a risk when lending money in the form of disposition or overdraft facilities. If the customers can not settle their debts, the bank will remain at the expense. The payment default rate, according to the Left, is only 0.3 percent . The amount of the interest is therefore not justified as a risk buffer. Both the Left and the Greens speak of a systematic rip-off of private banking customers and criticize the behavior of banks. Especially in rural areas, where a bank change is often not possible without significant circumstances, the high interest rate is not acceptable.

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Trapped in the Dispo trap: Affected get into personal bankruptcy

One in five Germans, according to FMH-Finanzberatung and Dusseldorf-based financial expert Udo Keßler, have to take out a loan in the form of overdraft or overdraft facilities. The reasons for this are diverse. Unemployed, single parents, couples with children and people in precarious working conditions are often dependent on overdraft. Especially people who regularly have to overdraw their bank accounts, get into the debt trap with the high interest rates of the emergency loans. Disbursements can be easier for customers to get than the cheaper installment loans. But it is also one of the most expensive forms of credit on the market. Frequently, indebted people can not withstand the rising costs without help and get into private bankruptcy .

Green and left call for limitation – Maas only wants to introduce banking advice

To relieve consumers, the left calls for a limitation of the overdraft and discretionary interest to a maximum of five percent above the base rate of the European Central Bank (ECB). Currently that would be 5.05 percent . The Greens are proposing an audit to determine what the interest rate should be in order to cover the banks' risk costs. Consumer Protection Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) chooses the diplomatic way and considers advisory obligation on the part of the banks with the customers meaningful, which use the Scheduling credit longer term. In addition, more transparency with regard to the amount of disposition and overdraft costs is to be ensured in the future. It is questionable whether counseling alone paves the way out of the debt trap. Because even if the bank customer is well informed, he probably has no way to switch to a cheaper loan.

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Cora Christine Döhn

editorial staff

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