France remains anachronistic among all mature economies when it comes to consumer credit information sharing. They lack a formal consumer credit repository, and lenders—in a highly concentrated retail credit market—use primarily application data and housefile data. Retail credit is underdeveloped as a result and it is difficult for lower income persons, members of ethnic minority groups, and other credit underserved groups to access affordable sources of mainstream credit. Further, what little information is shared is often only negative data, such as late payments, non-payments, collections and bankruptcy information. This makes for an effective black list and becomes an instrument for financial exclusion. PERC is committed to helping drive credit reporting regime change in France, and has undertaken preliminary activities including:
- Generating report on credit reporting and transborder data flows for the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD);
- Consulting government officials on potential credit reporting reform; and,
- Addressing industry executives.