Race and Mortgages: Bank of America Settles $335M Bias Suit

Bank of America has agreed to pay $335 million to settle a lawsuit alleging its Countrywide unit discriminated against black and Latino borrowers.  Sub-prime mortgage lending that targeted minority neighborhoods is one of the major factors behind the recent decline of the black middle class. The D.C. suburb hardest-hit by the foreclosure crisis is Prince George’s County, home to a large black middle and upper class.

Here is the ugly story made brief. According to [the U.S. Justice Department], Countrywide overcharged more than 200,000 black and Hispanic borrowers for their loans. About 10,000 were sold risky subprime mortgages, even though their finances were good enough to qualify for cheaper prime rates. Black customers who obtained their mortgages through a Countrywide-affiliated broker were more than twice as likely to get a subprime loan than similar white borrowers. In some markets, they were as much as eight times more likely.

Read more at: www.theatlantic.com