The People Have Spoken: E Cash is Better than Obama's Pilot Cash Advance Program

After a year of President Obama's Small Dollar Loan Pilot Program, it's clear that borrowers prefer their cash advance online and with no strings.

Online PR News – 06-December-2009 – – President Obama made waves in the cash advance industry after he was elected by promising to stop the so-called predatory lending and find better alternatives. He and the FDIC began a two-year pilot program in 2008 called the Small Dollar Loan Program. Halfway into the experiment, it's clear that borrowers prefer a cash advance that comes with no strings.

The premise behind the new FDIC program is that banks will start offering small dollar loans to borrowers who have been turned away from these very banks, and who have been served by the growing cash advance industry. The APY will be lower at the banks, and the borrowers will form a relationship with the bank by opening a bank account and attending a financial literacy class. They will also have longer to repay the loan.

But borrowers don't like their loans with all those requirements. Making time for even just a one hour class that they don't find useful seems like a lot to ask. And they are required to keep 10 percent of their loan in the savings account they're forced to open at the lending bank. They get that money back, but not up front. Compared to a quick and easy cash advance like the ones offered at, which offers an online application that takes an average of two minutes to fill out, the bank program is annoying to many borrowers.

"Sure, I can save five dollars on fees if I go to the bank that offers the short term loans" says Marinda Clark, a cash advance customer at "But I also have to take two hours out of my day to get to the financial class and sit there for an hour." Ms. Clark is a busy mom with a full time job, and the time spent attneding the class, not to mention that she had to go sit at the bank and wait for someone to talk to about getting the loan, is time away from her already incredibly oversheduled life. "I like that I can just apply online and the cash advance is in my bank account the next day. Sometimes it's there the same day. What a time saver."

Borrowers also appreciate that with an online cash advance, there are no awkward interactions with people at the bank, people in your financial literacy class, etc. It's a private matter, having to take out a cash advance, and sitting in what feels like an invasive group therapy session is a high price to pay to save an average of $10 in fees over the online cash advance offered by

If you want to find out more about cash advances like the ones Miranda Clark prefers, visit for Frequently Asked Questions, an online application, and lots of info about the short term cash advances offered at the site.