Given the dynamics of the market for credit, there is little the Fed can do to make additional credit and lower rates available to the lower end of the market. If the Fed wants to go around the market and introduce rationing, it can force commercial banks to make loans to markets they do not normally serve. However, rationing would have unintended consequences, including higher losses on low-end consumer loans for commercial banks, which will impair their capital and thereby reduce their ability to lend to other segments of the market.
Smaller loans have higher transactional costs relative to the loan amount. While government regulations designed to “protect consumers” may be well-intended, if the result is to prevent lenders from recovering those costs, then the unintended result will be denial of credit to otherwise creditworthy consumers.
• Armstrong Williams is the author of the book “Reawakening Virtues.” Join him from 4-5 a.m. and 6-7 p.m. daily on Sirius/XM Power 128. Become a fan on Facebook, and follow him on Twitter.