Anything above 60% per year is considered “interest at a criminal rate” in the criminal code. So, these lenders are staying well clear by maintaining a buffer of 0.1%.
This is how I imagine the discussion going when these lenders chose their interest rate.
“Is 60% criminal, or is it only over 60% that’s a problem?”
“Not sure. Maybe we should back off to 59% just to be safe.”
“Are you crazy? We can’t leave that much money on the table. Let’s go with 59.99%.”
“Is that getting too close? Maybe just 59.9%.”
It could be that this big decision over how much interest to squeeze from their customers was more sophisticated than this. Maybe just having a decimal point in the percentage makes people more likely to gloss over “mathy” stuff. I can believe that “59.9%” is more likely to be ignored than “59%”.
This is a part of the financial world I don’t wish on anyone.