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Fintech Lending: Financial Inclusion, Risk Pricing, and Alternative Information

Listed author(s):
  • Jagtiani, Julapa

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia)

  • Lemieux, Catharine

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago)

Fintech has been playing an increasing role in shaping financial and banking landscapes. Banks have been concerned about the uneven playing field because fintech lenders are not subject to the same rigorous oversight. There have also been concerns about the use of alternative data sources by fintech lenders and the impact on financial inclusion. In this paper, we explore the advantages/disadvantages of loans made by a large fintech lender and similar loans that were originated through traditional banking channels. Specifically, we use account-level data from the Lending Club and Y-14M bank stress test data. We find that Lending Club’s consumer lending activities have penetrated areas that could benefit from additional credit supply, such as areas that lose bank branches and those in highly concentrated banking markets. We also find a high correlation with interest rate spreads, Lending Club rating grades, and loan performance. However, the rating grades have a decreasing correlation with FICO scores and debt to income ratios, indicating that alternative data is being used and performing well so far. Lending Club borrowers are, on average, more risky than traditional borrowers given the same FICO scores. The use of alternative information sources has allowed some borrowers who would be classified as subprime by traditional criteria to be slotted into “better” loan grades and therefore get lower priced credit. Also, for the same risk of default, consumers pay smaller spreads on loans from the Lending Club than from traditional lending channels.

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File URL: https://www.philadelphiafed.org/-/media/research-and-data/publications/working-papers/2017/wp17-17.pdf?utm_campaign=WorkingPapers&utm_source=2017/07/7&utm_medium=E-mail
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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in its series Working Papers with number 17-17.

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Length: 48 pages
Date of creation: 18 Jul 2017
Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:17-17
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  1. Usman Ahmed & Thorsten Beck & Christine McDaniel & Simon Schropp, 2015. "Filling the Gap: How Technology Enables Access to Finance for Small- and Medium-Sized Enterprises," Innovations: Technology, Governance, Globalization, MIT Press, vol. 10(3-4), pages 35-48, Summer-Fa.
  2. Iyer, Rajkamal & Khwaja, Asim Ijaz & Luttmer, Erzo F. P. & Shue, Kelly, 2009. "Screening in New Credit Markets: Can Individual Lenders Infer Borrower Creditworthiness in Peer-to-Peer Lending?," Working Paper Series rwp09-031, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  3. Frame, W Scott & Srinivasan, Aruna & Woosley, Lynn, 2001. "The Effect of Credit Scoring on Small-Business Lending," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 33(3), pages 813-825, August.
  4. Seth M. Freedman & Ginger Zhe Jin, 2011. "Learning by Doing with Asymmetric Information: Evidence from Prosper.com," NBER Working Papers 16855, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Jagtiani, Julapa & Lemieux, Catharine, 2016. "Small Business Lending After the Financial Crisis: A New Competitive Landscape for Community Banks," Economic Perspectives, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, issue 3, pages 1-30.
  6. Jefferson Duarte & Stephan Siegel & Lance Young, 2012. "Trust and Credit: The Role of Appearance in Peer-to-peer Lending," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 25(8), pages 2455-2484.
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