Archive for September, 2007

Report: Minorities’ credit scores lower (Boston Herald)

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

In a report to Congress that’s certain to generate controversy, a new Federal Reserve study concedes credit scores vary “substantially” among different racial and ethnic groups.

The study, mandated by Congress in 2003, looked at a statistically accurate sample of 301,536 people’s ethnicities and credit scores.

Lawmakers ordered the study because critics have long charged that credit scores are biased against African-Americans, Hispanics and other minorities.

But after a massive, multi-year review of three different credit-scoring systems – including one the Fed’s own economists created – researchers concluded that:

Credit scores are highly accurate in predicting future payment performance.

Credit-rating systems aren’t inherently biased, although African-Americans and Hispanics do have lower average scores than non-Hispanic whites and Asians.

The types of loans that various ethnic groups lean toward “do not appear to be the source of differences in (payment) performance once (the) credit score is taken into account.” This counters some activists’ claims that African-American and Hispanics’ credit scores suffer because the mortgage industry steers minorities into risky subprime mortgages.

Some ethnic groups’ payment records are better – or worse – than what their average credit scores suggest.

Full story…

The GOP may erase the gains it’s made with Hispanics (Newsweek)

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

Lionel Sosa has long been one of the Republicans’ most potent weapons come election time. A Hispanic marketing guru, he’s crafted successful ad campaigns for presidential candidates from Ronald Reagan to George W. Bush aimed at drawing more Latinos into the GOP fold. So his presidential pick this time—New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, a Democrat—is startling. Part of the reason, he says, is ethnic loyalty: Richardson is the first serious Latino contender. But Sosa, who last worked for Bush in 2004, has also been dismayed by the way many GOP candidates have handled the illegal-immigration issue, advocating policies like building a border wall and employing rhetoric that he says is venomous and xenophobic: “It’s just an exaggerated, unfriendly position that needlessly turns away Latinos.”

Full story…

In English, Spanish, Lopez Means Talent (Washington Post)

Tuesday, September 18th, 2007

SHANGHAI, Sept. 16 — Years ago, before she became the youngest player on the U.S. women’s national team and a starter in this month’s World Cup, Stephanie Lopez was visiting Mexico, her paternal grandparents’ birthplace, when she decided to join the local boys on the soccer field.

Not only were they taken back by the presence of a female player — an absurd sight in Latino culture — “they were so surprised that the girl was actually decent in soccer,” she recalled.

Full story… 

Mortgages & minorities (Chicago Herald News)

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

The foreclosure crisis now hitting home in Will County is most likely affecting poor and minority neighborhoods the hardest, lending experts say.Nearly a quarter million black and Hispanic families are expected to lose their homes to foreclosure in the next few years. Neighborhoods with large segments of poor and minority populations in Chicago, Cleveland, Philadelphia and Atlanta are registering alarming rises in foreclosure rates, in some cases more than a doubling, according to an analysis of court filings and other housing data by The New York Times and academic researchers.

Full story… 

Asian-Americans angry at GOP focus on Hsu (Politico)

Friday, September 7th, 2007

An Asian-American civil rights group and the lawyer for embattled Hillary Clinton fundraiser Norman Hsu responded sharply Thursday to Republican efforts to link the case to scandals involving other Asian-American donors to Bill Clinton more than a decade ago.

“It would be wholly inappropriate to link this in any way to the ’96 campaign cycle investigations, just because both involve Asian-Americans,” said Lawrence Barcella, a lawyer for Hsu, who is a top donor to Hillary Clinton and other Democrats.

Full story…

Latina and Asian American women live the longest (Sacramento Bee)

Friday, September 7th, 2007

Maria Guzman, who celebrated her 82nd birthday last week with about 40 relatives, is preparing for her next cruise — to the Greek islands.

Guzman, who lives by herself in Elk Grove when she’s not touring the world, is one of the unsung heroines of a new study showing that Latinas and Asian American women live longer than anyone else in California.

The state’s 6.5 million Latinas enjoy an average life expectancy of 83, while the nearly 2.3 million Asian American females can expect to live past 85, according to the nonprofit Public Policy Institute of California.

Full story…

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