Policy portal Retail & Inclusion

Access to financial services for individuals is a prerequisite for social inclusion, a decent standard of living during working and retirement age and protection in case of unexpected life events. Unaffordable offers and discriminatory practices are some of the barriers preventing many citizens from accessing the basic financial services needed to participate in modern life.

EU policymakers have a responsibility to remove these barriers and make the retail financial services market safe and fair. Rules are also needed to help citizens avoid over-indebtedness and offer a way out for those who find themselves in this difficult situation. And all of this must extend to the digital world (See also “digitalisation” under “Digital Finance“).

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20 PUBLICATIONS

Policy brief

Root causes of household over-indebtedness

Without strong consumer protection legislation and proper public social security systems, the risk of financial difficulty is left to chance, making people vulnerable to predatory schemes. In this short policy brief, Finance Watch takes a closer look at the root causes of over-indebtedness and highlights the steps policymakers can take to better protect households across Europe.
Position paper

Factsheet – Creditworthiness assessment for small loans: the key to prevent consumer over-indebtedness

Small loans are high risk for consumers, in particular for vulnerable consumers. Sound creditworthiness assessments are therefore necessary for small loans. This factsheet co-published by a European Coalition of NGOs on the Consumer Credit Directive provides recommendations for a sound creditworthiness assessment for small loans.
Report

Report – Tackling causes of over-indebtedness in the EU consumer credit market

This report presents the findings of the study as well as detailed policy recommendations for the CCD review.
Consultation response

Amending the Mortgage Credit Directive to address consumer protection issues, digitalisation and green mortgages

Report

Report – From debtor prisons to being prisoners of debt

Making the case for harmonised EU consumer insolvency rules.
Report

Consumer credit market malpractices uncovered

An in-depth study of consumer credit markets in Spain, Romania and Ireland and what it means for the Consumer Credit Directive (CCD) review
Report

Report “Basic Financial Services”

Finance Watch released a report which identifies a shortlist of basic financial products and services that should be made available to all European citizens to help combat financial and social exclusion.
Report

Report – Is the human dignity of individual debtors at risk?

New Finance Watch report provides evidence for the need to increase borrower protection and to improve proposed legislation on companies that deal with non-performing loans.
Consultation response

Consultation response on draft guidelines on loan origination and monitoring

Report

What makes credit so risky? A consumer perspective

Finance Watch’s research paper on consumer credit and its contribution to over-indebtedness.
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