Weekly Topic Update (Jan 14 to Jan 20)

Community banks battle predatory lending by supporting rural poor

01/13/2018

Community banks like Southern Bancorp are offering free financial literacy classes to help the vulnerable who feel they have nowhere to turn to but predatory lenders. Low income and impoverished Americans, especially those in rural areas, are pushed into using payday lenders due to lack of trust with traditional banks, lack of accessibility and the fact online banking is nearly impossible in areas where there is little broadband. Southern Bancorp's CEO says the company is aiming to free the rural poor from succumbing to quick-cash schemes by offering community banking that helps them back on their feet and educates them on building their net worth.

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Source: New York Post

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FRS | Lending | Mortgage Lending | Rule | 12/22/2017

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01/11/2018

Experian: Employment boosts credit scores to 10-year high

National Mortgage News • Mortgage Lending • Industry News

According to Experian's annual State of Credit report, VantageScores, an Experian-affiliated alternative to the FICO credit scores used in mortgage underwriting, averaged 675 last year - the highest on record since 2007. This is due to improved hiring and despite stagnant wages that aren't keeping pace with rising debt levels, the report stated.

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01/12/2018

Report: Trump Organization's $1.5B in condo sales to shell companies could be front for money launderers

Quartz • AML BSA CTF • Industry News

A media report found that more than 1,300 condos worth $1.5 billion either owned or licensed by the Trump Organization - or 21% of all U.S. sales since the 1980s - were bought by shell companies in all-cash transactions. BuzzFeed reports Trump makes extensive use of shell corporations for his own businesses and since his election, 70% of his company's property sales have been made to LLCs, making them open to AML violations. The Treasury Department says shell companies and cash purchases are two of the most common ways of laundering money through real estate, even with the mechanism that forces title-insurance providers in seven major cities to reveal the real identities of all-cash buyers who use shell companies.

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01/14/2018

Chase first national bank to partner with online car lender

Business Insider • Lending • Industry News

Fintech startups are working to ease auto financing for consumers to seek out loans and leases using mobile devices, and by expanding partnerships with major automakers and banks. San Francisco-based AutoFi has joined with Chase - the first major national bank to align itself with the company.

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