New Report Shows Recession Amplified Wealth Gap Between Whites and Hispanics, Blacks

There are many reasons for the widening wealth gap between whites and minorities, according to Tom Shapiro, director of the Institute on Assets and Social Policy at Brandeis University, chief among them predatory loan lending, which affected black and Hispanics in higher numbers. “We know that communities of color, their rate of subprime or predatory loans was twice what it is in the overall population,” he notes.

Aracely Panemeno, with the Center for Responsible Lending, tells that she’s seen this first-hand in Virginia. “I live in Prince William County, Virginia, where 12,000 predominantly Latino families lost their homes because of predatory lending, the subprime boom and over-development,” she explained.

But some, like Frederick Rivera of the nonprofit lending group Fintana, remain optimistic despite the expanding gap. “As the bubble has settled, there is a bigger interest to purchase on behalf of the minority community,” says Rivera.

At least there’s a silver lining…