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The Subprime Mortgage Calamity and the African American Woman


  • Sandra Phillips



Many media and scholarly reports have focused on the subprime mortgage crisis and the resultant global financial meltdown. Most of the literature notes unequivocally that discrimination in the mortgage market has been, and remains, race-based and that it has damaged the African-American population disproportionately. This paper discusses the consequences of the subprime mortgage calamity and its negative impact on the Black community, women in general, and African-American women in particular. After controlling for individual, credit and housing characteristics, research shows that disparities in lending have persisted. Studies indicate that 63% of those given subprime mortgages qualified for prime mortgages. African-American females received the most high-cost loans and were over twice as likely to be given a subprime mortgage compared to White females. Moreover, African-American women were five times more likely to have received a subprime loan than similarly situated White males. Upper-income Black women were more often targeted for high-cost loans than lower-income women of color. As a result, the subprime mortgage crisis has precipitated an enormous loss of home equity and wealth among African-Americans that will affect generations to come. Copyright Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2012

Suggested Citation

  • Sandra Phillips, 2012. "The Subprime Mortgage Calamity and the African American Woman," The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer;National Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 227-237, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:blkpoe:v:39:y:2012:i:2:p:227-237
    DOI: 10.1007/s12114-011-9107-1

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Brian K. Bucks & Arthur B. Kennickell & Traci L. Mach & Kevin B. Moore, 2009. "Changes in U.S. family finances from 2004 to 2007: evidence from the Survey of Consumer Finances," Federal Reserve Bulletin, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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