Lists of alternative financial services

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Consume(er)ium list of alternative financial services lists

Spectrum of consumer finance

Predatory lending -> Payday loan -> Consumer finance -> Peer-to-peer loan -> credit card debt -> bank loan

What are alternative financial services?

This is the Consume(er)ium list of w:alternative financial services lists.

Alternative financial services (AFS) are financial services provided outside traditional banking institutions, on which many low-income individuals depend. In developing countries, these services often take the form of microfinance. In developed countries, the services may be similar to those provided by banks and include payday loans, rent-to-own agreements, pawnshops, refund anticipation loans, some subprime mortgage loans and car title loans, and non-bank check cashing, money orders, and money transfers. It also includes traditional moneylending by door-to-door collection.”

Often the spectrum ranges from brute loan sharking in operations known as w:payday loans all the way to almost respectable interest taking of non-collateralized loans.

What is APR, why does it matter?

“In many countries and jurisdictions, lenders (such as banks) are required to disclose the "cost" of borrowing in some standardized way as a form of consumer protection. APR is intended to make it easier to compare lenders and loan options.”

~ Wikipedia on annual percentage rate
  • In EU all loaning operations must show the APR for their example loans in their marketing.
  • APR can range from hundreds of percent to few tens of percent. Credit card debt is usually in the 10-15% zone.

Peer-to-peer lending

Peer-to-peer lending, abbreviated P2PL, is the practice of lending money to unrelated individuals, or "peers", without going through a traditional financial intermediary such as a bank or other traditional financial institution. P2PL is not to be confused with peer to peer investing (P2PI). This lending takes place online on peer-to-peer lending companies' websites using various different lending platforms and credit checking tools. Many also use the abbreviation "P2P" when discussing the peer-to-peer lending or investing industries more generally. Peer-to-peer lending is also known as crowdlending.”

~ Wikipedia on peer-to-peer lending

Microfinance and microcredit

Microfinance is a source of financial services for entrepreneurs and small businesses lacking access to banking and related services.”

~ Wikipedia on microfinance

Microcredit is the extension of very small loans (microloans) to impoverished borrowers who typically lack collateral, steady employment and a verifiable credit history.”

~ Wikipedia on microcredit
More reading Impact of microcredit

Socially responsible investing

Socially responsible investing (SRI), also known as sustainable, socially conscious, "green" or ethical investing, is any investment strategy which seeks to consider both financial return and social good.”


Lists of P2P financial services in Europe


List of Finnish alternative financial services lists

List of P2P financial services in Finland

Lists of P2P financial services in Finland

List of alternative investment schemes in Finland


List of UK alternative financial services lists

Lists of P2P financial services in UK

North America