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It is hard to let an interesting article slip by before your eyes.

“Westbon Inc. Introduces New Online Financing Platform for International Students in U.S., Revolutionizing New Way to Build Credit History for this Underbanked Group.” –

Westbon Inc. founded in 2015 and based in Chicago, IL, has applied the advantage of the Fintech industry to delivering its online Auto and Personal Loans to international students in the United States.   Why have international students become the target market for this new company’s services?    Here are two reasons:

  1. Currently, over one million international students are studying at U.S. colleges and universities.  Most international students don’t have Social Security Numbers to build up their credit scores.
  2. If one does not have any credit score, it is almost impossible to borrow money from a bank or any financial institution(s) in the United States.

Sounds like the company had found a perfect market for their online borrowing business, right?   We don’t think so.   Here is why.

  1. The two largest groups of international students in the United States are from China (31.5%) and India (15.9%).   Students from these two countries often have to borrow money from banks in their home countries to support their studies overseas.
  2. The key issue: “How much do people in the two countries have to pay for the lending interesting rates? “
  3. In China, the loan lending rates are around 4.5% to 5% per year, and in India, the rates could go up as high as 11%.
  4. This U.S. company, offering an online platform for international students borrowing money, charges an annual rate at 19.1%, and the company still calls it an “affordable rate.”

You do the math and see if it’s worth your attention and application.   One more point to add – even you, as a foreigner, with a perfect credit score, many U.S. banks will still not let you borrow money unless you have real estate or some property in the United States as an escrow or if you have qualified co-signers who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents.