- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 15, 2014

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - New Hampshire businesses offering short-term loans using vehicles as collateral would be restricted to a much lower interest rate under a bill headed to the Senate.

The House voted 212-129 Wednesday to let the companies continue to charge 25 percent interest on the first month of the loan, but lower the rate allowed to 3 percent for each subsequent month the loan is outstanding.

Supporters argued the bill is a compromise that allows the lenders to make a profit without gouging people who have few options when they need cash quickly.

But opponents said the bill could drive the companies out of New Hampshire and eliminate a needed option for people who need a short-term loan.

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