Thursday, October 13, 2005

the economic plantation(6.21.05)

It is not surprising that as a people, we are more likely
than others to spend our money on nothing and then attempt
to secure additional money via high interest rate loans.
If you are unaware, African Americans are more apt
to be swindled in this fashion than any other ethnic group.
According to a recent report published by The
National Community Reinvestment Coalition of 15 large
mortgage lenders for the year 2004, African Americans
were almost three times more likely than whites to be
required to secure a more expensive sub-prime home
mortgage loan. The data, collected via the
Home Mortgage Disclosure Act—which requires that lenders
release information on loans and loan pricing—revealed that
African Americans were awarded almost 30 percent sub-prime
loans compared to just 10 percent for whites.
It was also observed that there was a disparity in lending
for African Americans who purchased manufactured
homes—homes built entirely in the factory under
The Federal Manufactured Home Construction and
Safety Standards of HUD—suggesting that African
Americans who purchased these homes were more
likely to get a sub prime loan when compared to
other ethnic groups.
Sub-prime loans usually have an interest rate that
is 0.1 to 0.6 percent higher than the prime rate. Although
on the surface this seems like a small fee, in the long-term
it can end up being thousands of dollars of interest. Swindlers,
I mean mortgage brokers, suggest that these loans are for
persons with blemished credit histories and serve to
compensate for an increased credit risk. This is why some
suggest that minority populations have more than their
share of these type of loans. However, I cannot believe
this, since as a population, we have been disenfranchised
historically from an economic standpoint. This is just an
extension of bad habits that have not died, even after
the end of slavery 140 years ago.
--torrance stephens


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