What Recovery? Ask Chicagoans 10 Years after Financial Crisis

Woodstock Institute Releases 2018 Community Lending Fact Book against Backdrop of Sluggish Recovery in the Region  


PRESS CONTACT: Jenna Severson (0) (312) 368-0310 (jseverson@woodstockinst.org)

CHICAGO, IL – The 2018 Chicago Area Community Lending Fact Book released today by Woodstock Institute identifies local mortgage and small business lending trends in the City of Chicago, Chicago’s 77 community areas, and the seven-county region of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties. The Fact Book’s community-specific pages are designed for community-based organizations, neighborhood residents, policymakers, and lenders to identify new market opportunities or ensure their community receives an equitable amount of lending, investments, and financial services.

Woodstock Institute had published its Community Lending Fact Book annually from 1986 until 2009, when its contents were moved to an online Data Portal. Brought back to provide analysis via neighborhood-specific pages, this latest iteration of the Fact Book adds data on bank branches and business lending to its robust information on mortgage lending.

“The Fact Book has historically been an important tool for community-based organizations, lenders, and others to understand investment levels in their communities,” said Community Lending Fact Book author and Woodstock Institute Director of Research Lauren Nolan. “We felt it was important to bring back this resource as communities continue to cope with the lingering effects of the financial crisis, address structural inequities in access to capital, and find new ways to support historically disinvested areas.”

The release of the Fact Book tracks against a backdrop of sluggish recovery from the 2008 financial crisis, where Chicago leads the country in the number of home borrowers who are underwater on their mortgages. The region’s unequal recovery most acutely impacts low-income and minority communities, where high volumes of foreclosed and vacant homes have plunged surrounding property values, as indicated by previous Woodstock Institute research.

The Fact Book data from 2012 to 2017 demonstrate disparities among racial and ethnic groups. For example, homeownership rates are 22.9 percent lower among Hispanic/Latinos and 34.3 percent lower among Black/African Americans than their White counterparts in the region. Likewise, loan origination rates for Hispanic/Latinos are 10.3 percent lower and 15.9 percent lower among Black/African Americans than for their White counterparts in the region.
Other notable trends in the decade since Woodstock Institute last released its Community Lending Fact Book include the growth of non-bank mortgage lenders, such as Guaranteed Rate, LLC. and Quicken Loans, which now account for the majority of mortgage loans.

Presentation of the Fact Book to over 120 community members and civic leaders at the Federal Reserve Board of Chicago Friday included a panel discussion, “What Recovery? Chicago 10 Years after the Financial Crisis,” moderated by Jane Dokko, Assistant Vice President of the Federal Bank Reserve of Chicago, featuring experts from the housing, banking, and small business sectors including: Deborah Moore of Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago, Steve Hall of  LISC Economic Development Lending, Manuel Jimenez of Marquette Bank, and Kyle Smith of Metropolitan Mayors Caucus.