The California Department of Business Oversight (“DBO”) has opened an inquiry into the marketplace lending industry for the purpose of assessing “the effectiveness and proper scope of our licensing and regulatory structure as it relates to these lenders.”
On December 11, 2015, the DBO sent an online survey to 14 marketplace lenders that requested data on loan and investor funding programs from January 2010 to June 30, 2015. Although the specific lenders were not identified, the DBO said that the surveys were distributed to consumer and commercial lenders.
The information requested includes annual loan numbers, overall loan numbers, median loan sizes, APR data, loan delinquency information as well as national and California investor funding data. In addition, the survey requests business model and platform information from each lender.
The DBO said that the requested information would help the agency assess the size of the marketplace lending industry in California and better understand the types of loans and investor funding programs used by these lenders so it can assess how the state’s regulatory and licensing regime is working — or should work — when it comes to marketplace lending.
The DBO survey follows on the heels of an announcement by the U.S. Department of the Treasury in July 2015 that it was seeking public comments on marketplace lending. The Treasury announcement noted that marketplace lending “is a rapidly developing and fast-growing sector that is changing the way consumers and small businesses secure credit…In light of the growth of this segment, Treasury is interested in learning more about the business models and product offerings of online marketplace lenders; the potential for online marketplace lending to expand access to credit to historically underserved market segments; and how the financial regulatory framework should evolve to support the safe growth of this industry.”
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