BankThink: Let’s rethink how CDFIs are examined

American Banker
Tuesday, December 3, 2019

From former Comptroller of the Currency Gene Ludwig: financial institutions are eager to serve customers with middle-class incomes. But in other parts of the country — places where a greater proportion of local residents live below the poverty line — banks are few and far between. For much of the 20th century, policymakers struggled to identify effective ways to address this inequity. But 25 years ago, Washington took a key step in establishing a federal fund to support so-called Community Development Financial Institutions that serve communities traditional banks often leave behind. Now, CDFIs have a proven track record and hold perhaps even more promise to advance financial well-being in low- and moderate-income communities.