SMS loans ad banned from radio

Sweden's Market Court has banned a radio advertisement for a loans company on the basis that it contained too little information about the repayment conditions.

Mobillån Sverige has been told that it will be fined 500,000 kronor (75,000 dollars) if it uses the ad, which focuses on the speed with which the loan can be arranged.

“The consumer ombudsman wanted the company to provide more information about the credit period and the interest rate,” said Christer Fallenius, chairman of the Market Court.

By sending an SMS and answering the questions which are sent back, customers can arrange a loan of up to 3,000 kronor in 15 minutes, the company says.

“The other thing was that the ombudsman didn’t want the company to promote the speed argument so strongly,” said Fallenius.

The Market Court, which handles competition-, consumer- and marketing-related cases, acknowledged that there were no rules which stated that the credit limit had to be included.

“We have banned the radio advertisement. But the ad is on TV and on the company’s web site, and we haven’t banned that,” said Fallenius.