Saturday, October 31, 2015

Taking The New York Red Line

Anytime I hear claims that institutional, systemic, and economic racism is long gone from blue states and is "only in the South" I have a good long laugh because I know that's absolutely untrue.

The green welcome sign hangs in the front door of the downtown branch of Hudson City Savings Bank, New Jersey’s largest savings bank. But for years, federal regulators said, its executives did what they could to keep certain customers out. 
They steered clear of black and Hispanic neighborhoods as they opened branches across New York and Connecticut, federal officials said. They focused on marketing mortgages in predominantly white sections of suburban New Jersey and Long Island, not here or in Bridgeport, Conn. 
The results were stark. In 2014, Hudson approved 1,886 mortgages in the market that includes New Jersey and sections of New York and Connecticut, federal mortgage data show. Only 25 of those loans went to black borrowers
Hudson, while denying wrongdoing, agreed last month to pay nearly $33 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Justice Department. Federal officials said it was the largest settlement in the history of both departments for redlining, the practice in which banks choke off lending to minority communities.

Those of you keeping score at home, 25 out of 1,886 is 1,3%.

Folks, post-Great Recession redlining is rampant all across the country, and one of the main issues I have with the awful lie that anti-redlining measures like the Community Reinvestment Act signed by Clinton into law forced banks to give mortgages to "broke minorities" and caused the housing collapse.  That particular lie I've documented for seven years on this blog as false.

And redlining is exactly why the CRA lie cannot possibly be true: if banks weren't lending to minorities, then how did minorities cause the Great Recession Housing Crash?

Ahh, but that brings us back to redlining going on still today.  And if you want to know why the GOP is so eager to get rid of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, this is one major reason why.

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