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Loan sharks: yami-kinyu


Unswerving cyclist
14 Mar 2002
Loan sharks on the rise in Japan along with bankruptcies

With the economy in the doldrums for years and unemployment at a record high, Japanese are racking up debts, falling prey to loan sharks and declaring bankruptcy by the thousands.

Individual bankruptcies soared fivefold in the last five years to more than 214,600 last year, up 34 percent from the previous year, according to the Japanese Supreme Court. And experts say the nation's culture of shame about debts and overall ignorance about the law are a big part of the problem. [...]

"Japanese people feel it's an obligation to pay back money they've borrowed. They're determined to pay it back even if it kills them," says Shigeki Kanamori, who gives legal advice to people struggling with loans gone sour.

I wonder if this view is still valid during recession.

Kanamori and other experts say the ballooning problem of broke borrowers has produced a booming business of illegal lenders, some linked with gangsters, who charge outrageous interest rates -- such as 1,800 percent a year, according to police -- and hound borrowers with threats to wring payments out of them. [...]

Japanese police say 446 people were arrested last year on charges of operating illegal lenders, but the arrests are believed to be a just small portion of the rampant crime. The Tokyo police have set up a special team to crack down on "yami-kinyu" or "racket lenders."

=> Loan sharks on the rise in Japan along with bankruptcies - Taipei Times
loan shark.... hmmm... (considering career change....*)

(nah.... "You want fries with that" jobs much safer... and respected, too :D ))
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