Bad, Bad Banks?
A new staff paper from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York assesses the tender topic of bank mortgage lending to minority borrowers. Going beyond the usual statistics showing significant racial disparities, the paper dives into a bank-by-bank analysis of why this might be, finding significantly different and persistent fair-lending records at different banks. Controversially, it comes up with what might be called a structural racism rationale for bank-by-bank differences when it comes to mortgage lending for African Americans. This might not sit at all well with bankers, but it could well have political traction with progressive advocacy groups despite our methodological quibbles.