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A third of ads for financial services ‘do not meet guidelines’

A Central Bank survey assessed almost 300 advertisements from 23 different firms.

Image: credit card via Shutterstock

JUST UNDER ONE third of advertisements for banking, moneylending and credit union did not adhere to European guidelines, a new survey has found.

The Central Bank examined advertisements over a period of five months from 23 different firms, and found that 30% of the 291 advertisements ‘did not contain all relevant information or display the information in a clear manner’.

All firms involved have been contacted following the review and asked to withdraw the advertisements until they are amended.

Five banks, four moneylenders and 14 credit unions were examined, with the latter being the worst offenders.

“Consumers must be confident that financial products and services, including loans, are advertised and marketed in a way that is clear, fair and not misleading,” director of consumer protection, Bernard Sheridan said.

The Central Bank investigated 182 advertising complaints last year, with 154 requiring some form of action.

The European Communities (Consumer Credit Agreements) Regulations requires the following information to be displayed:

  • The borrowing rate, fixed or variable or both, together with particulars of any charges included in the total cost of the credit to the consumer
  • The total amount of credit
  • Subject to [the above], the annual percentage rate of charge
  • If applicable, the duration of the credit agreement
  • In relation to credit in the form of deferred payment for a specific good or service, the cash price and the amount of any advance payment
  • If applicable, the total amount payable by the consumer and the amount of the instalments’.

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