A recent study points toward predatory lending practices aimed at minorities as the main reason for the U.S. housing meltdown.
Predatory lending aimed at racially segregated minority neighborhoods led to mass foreclosures that fueled the U.S. housing crisis, according to a new study published in the American Sociological Review.
The financial institutions likely to be found in minority areas tended to be predatory — pawn shops, payday lenders and check cashing services that “charge high fees and usurious rates of interest,” they said in the study.
“By definition, segregation creates minority dominant neighborhoods, which, given the legacy of redlining and institutional discrimination, continue to be underserved by mainstream financial institutions,” the study says.
So it’s those fat cats in their suits that have caused this ruckus.
Sure, I wouldn’t doubt that there is some predatory lending going on out there and it should be severely punished, but I’d bet dollars to donuts that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac had some part in this as well. Either by being passive and not informing buyers about predatory loans or by not insuring that lenders did not carry on with such practices.