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From the NCLC eReportsFast Facts on the Debt Buyer Industry:”

Encore Capital, that often operates under the name Midland, is becoming the dominant actor in the field. Even before it purchased Asset Acceptance, the sixth largest debt buyer, it had purchased far more debt in 2012 than any other company — over $18 billion, or 58% more than it did in 2011.

This explains why they do whatever they like and get away with it and it makes me not want to settle my claims against Midland Funding, Midland Credit Management and their attorneys Bursey & Associates.  I’ll be looking up lawsuits against them in AZ

Also from the NCLC eReport:

Sherman Financial Group, which used to be number one, fell to number two and purchased only $11 billion in debt in 2012, down 40% from 2011.

Other top debt buying companies that purchased over $1 billion in debt include Portfolio Recovery, Square Two Financial, Ophrys, Unifund, and Fourscore.

Sherman Financial Group is the infamous LVNV and you may get collection letters from Resurgent Capital Services (Sherman owned) or their other collectors and when my clients disputed with one LVNV collector, they simply assigned the accounts to another collector and they never provided substantive responses to the disputes.  Very frustrating.

Debt purchased directly from credit card companies dropped industry-wide in 2012 by over 30%, but purchases of all other debt increased almost 50%, so that total debt purchases fell only about 13%. At the same time that credit card issuers began to shy away from selling their debt, debt buyers found other forms of debt to purchase and also purchased more debt from each other.

A number of debt buyers exited the industry in 2012, including B-Line, NCO, Arrow Financial, West Corp., and Zenith. Presumably these companies sold their debt to other debt buyers before exiting the industry.

I wonder WHY credit card issuers shy away from selling their debt.  They get a bad reputation due to the collectors’ misconduct?  They don’t want to be subpoenaed for records and testimony when debt buyers sue?

As I recall, Chase bought NCO, but I didn’t know that Arrow quit buying debts.

NCLC is the National Consumer Law Center and if you’re serious about credit reporting or debt collection litigation, their manuals are MUST haves.   I have their FDCPA book and it comes with a free subscription to the NCLC eReports. The NCLC does great work defending consumer rights.