Kerry Katona Cash Lady ad banned

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You would be looking for a financial role model for a long time before you stumbled over Kerry Katona. Nevertheless, the sometime singer, tabloid catnip and rent-a-celebrity has been selected as the face of a payday loan company, presumably on the theory that "if your finances are as insane as Kerry's perhaps you won't bother to look too closely at the interest rate".

Katona was declared bankrupt in 2008 for unpaid taxes on her celebrity earnings. Now she is fronting the ads for the Cash Lady loans company and seems to be suggesting that a celeb lifestyle can be financed by borrowing a few quid at exorbitant interest rates (in the case of Cash Lady the apr is 2,760 percent). The tagline is "fast cash for fast lives".

Unfortunately for Katona's depleted bank account, the Advertising Standards Authority has banned the ads on the grounds that it was irresponsible to encourage people in Katona's position to borrow cash on those terms. The ASA judged that the ad "made no reference to the fact that those loans were intended for short-term stop gaps between pay days and were not intended as a more immediate solution for more serious financial problems."

Cash Lady said they had chosen Katona because she was the sort of person that their customers could relate to, which sounds rather like the equivalent of calling her a feckless idiot who would rather spend her money on breast augmentation than a tax bill.

Looking more closely, perhaps Katona might be a suitable choice after all. Payday loans appeal to the desperate who have exhausted all other sources of income and have few marketable skills. Katona fits the bill. Advertising opportunities have been a little thin on the ground for her ever since Iceland dropped her as their mumsy frontperson after she was filmed snorting a substance that probably wasn't sherbet.

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