NEW rules on the controversial payday loan market have handed a business opportunity to one Bournemouth software company.

The rules require lenders online to display “prominently” at least one link to a price comparison site so customers can see other available interest rates.

Choose Wisely, a price comparison site from Bournemouth start-up Ratio, is working with several of the best-known lenders including Wonga and Quick Quid as a result of the regulations, enforced by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Marc Biles, chief executive of Choose Wisely, said of the new rules: “This is a great step forward for consumers looking for short term loans. We’re excited to be leading the way in collaboration with market-leading lenders.

“Visiting a price comparison site like Choose Wisely is the easiest and best way to make sure that you’re informed and you get the best possible deal. We’re delighted that people are being encouraged to compare their options - it’s a real win for consumers.”

The growth of high-cost short term loans triggered a 2015 investigation by the CMA. It reported that among consumers who failed to repay on time, more than half felt the total repayment amount was more than they expected.

The CMA found that on average, only 42 per cent of consumers looking for a loan visited comparison sites before deciding on a product. It ruled that comparing options before purchasing would increase competition for improve consumer understanding of what was on offer.

The CMA says its rules will allow customers to compare loans more easily and give them a clear explanation of fees and charges. Those were capped by the Financial Conduct Authority in 2015. Lenders cannot charge more than 0.8 per cent of the amount borrowed per day, while the total in fees and charges must not exceed 100 per cent of the loan amount.

The cap is being reviewed as part of another enquiry, but the Consumer Finance Association, which represents lenders, says the cap has led to 600,000 fewer people having access to credit.

Choose Wisely has partnered with more than 20 lenders including Wonga, Quick Quid, Pounds to Pocket and Satsuma to get its link displayed.

Choose Wisely was founded in 2013 by Ratio, a software company that was part of James Benamor’s Richmond Group until a management buyout that year. The site caters for all consumers but specialises in finding products for those with a poor credit history or none at all.