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Mortgage Lending to Minorities: Where's the Bias?

Theodore E Day and Stan Liebowitz

Economic Inquiry, 1998, vol. 36, issue 1, 3-28

Abstract: This paper examines mortgage lending and concludes that studies based on data created by the Boston Fed should be reevaluated. A detailed examination of these data indicates that irregularities in these data, when combined with the most commonly used research methodology, appear to have biased previous research toward a finding of discrimination against minority applicants. When the most severe data irregularities are eliminated, evidence to support a hypothesis of discrimination disappears. The currently fashionable 'flexible' underwriting standards of mortgage lenders may have the unintended consequences of increasing defaults for the 'beneficiaries' of these policies. Copyright 1998 by Oxford University Press.

Date: 1998
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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:36:y:1998:i:1:p:3-28