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Centering on the ABC Loan Co., a twenty-five year old pawnshop/checkcashing outlet, No Loans Today documents daily life in the African-American community of South Central Los Angeles in the aftermath of the 1992 riots. The film explores the lives of several people who've either chosen or been forced to remain in this community. With interviews and cinema-verité scenes of day-to-day living, No Loans Today examines the relationship between pawnshops and checkcashing outlets - also known as ""fringe banks"" - to other economic problems that this community endures, such as crime and unemployment. The recent proliferation of fringe banks completes a cycle of economic marginalization that began when industries left the area and banks began to redline South Central against business loans. Portraying the pawnshop as a metaphor for survival, the film explores economic and psychological marginalization, and reveals the unseen resiliency of the people of this community.

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