University of Utah Raises Red Flag of Treatment of Latino Mortgage Applicants

August 20, 2013
mortgage lending news

Investigators with the Bureau of Economic and Business Research at the University of Utah say they have documented a correlation between ethnicity, loan approvals, and interest rates.

According to their study, Hispanics in Salt Lake County who applied for a mortgage between 2006 and 2011 were turned away twice as often as white applicants -- 27.4 percent of the time compared to 14.2 percent -- even when their incomes were in the top 10 percent of all applicants. Many Latinos who did get approved, meanwhile, paid more in interest than white borrowers. The researchers stopped short of accusing the lenders of deliberate bias but said the findings threw up a "red flag."

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