Viewpoint: Extend CRA’s Benefits Beyond Banking

American Banker
By Eugene A. Ludwig

The following is an excerpt from a speech on corporate social responsibility Mr. Ludwig delivered Sept. 23 at Adelphi University.

Many companies today have admirable programs and foundations designed to serve their communities beyond the products and services they create and sell. However, many companies do not.

I come from an industry where at least one part of it, the banking business, has an affirmative, statutory, and regulatory set of duties to serve its entire community, in particular low- and moderate-income elements of that community. These duties are part of something called the Community Reinvestment Act. Continue reading “Viewpoint: Extend CRA’s Benefits Beyond Banking”

California Is Headed for a Real Fiscal Train Wreck

The Wall Street Journal

The state should spend less before calling on Uncle Sam.

With credit markets in New York in crisis last week, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger sent an extraordinary letter to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson asking for $7 billion. Although the governor has since withdrawn that request, it testifies to the dire state of his budget. Continue reading “California Is Headed for a Real Fiscal Train Wreck”

Countrywide Plan May Cut Mortgage Rates for 395,000 Borrowers

Interest rates on some subprime and ‘option ARM’ loans will temporarily go as low as 2.5%.

By E. Scott Reckard

October 24, 2008

With calls growing for stronger action to help troubled homeowners, consumer advocates are hailing a mortgage-modification program being implemented by Bank of America Corp.’s Countrywide unit as the most ambitious effort yet to avert foreclosures.A key lawmaker is demanding that other mortgage lenders adopt the program, which was called for by a settlement of state lawsuits alleging that Countrywide borrowers were systematically tricked into taking out unaffordable loans. Continue reading “Countrywide Plan May Cut Mortgage Rates for 395,000 Borrowers”

Viewpoint: Winning Main Street Hearts and Minds

American Banker | Friday, October 24, 2008
By Robert Gnaizda and Jorge Corralejo

Last week the secretary of the Treasury and the chairman of the Federal Reserve Board decided to save the American banking industry from its follies by partially nationalizing the banks through an infusion of $250 billion of taxpayer funds. Continue reading “Viewpoint: Winning Main Street Hearts and Minds”

Chase Home Lending Heeds Pleas for Foreclosure Relief

By RACHEL RASKIN-ZRIHEN/Times-Herald staff writer

A leading lender has announced it will impose a temporary foreclosure moratorium following calls by two Solano County government bodies hit hard by the sub-prime mortgage crisis.Chase Home Lending CEO David Lowman announced the bank has implemented a temporary foreclosure moratorium in all Solano County cities, said Bob Gnaizda general council for Greenlining Institute, a California-based national nonprofit promoting home ownership for those living paycheck to paycheck. Continue reading “Chase Home Lending Heeds Pleas for Foreclosure Relief”

The Latest Charity Shakedown

Do you know the color of your donees?
The Wall Street Journal

What if the Greenlining Institute held a shakedown and nobody paid up?

The Berkeley-based outfit invited representatives from America’s top 50 foundations to come to their offices two weeks ago for a chat on the urgent national priority of “diversity in philanthropy.” Among the questions posed: “What percent of the asset management firms under contract with your foundation are minority-owned?” We’re delighted to say that not a single one of the foundations sent Greenlining any data and no one showed up to the meeting. Maybe they’re starting to catch on to this con game. Continue reading “The Latest Charity Shakedown”

We Are Trying to Get Charities to Be More Inclusive

The Wall Street Journal

Your post-election day editorial attack on community organizers (“The Latest Charity Shakedown,” Nov. 5 – See Below) is inconsistent with the Journal’s recent strong support for transparency and scrutiny of the Wall Street firms that have helped cause the economic meltdown. Continue reading “We Are Trying to Get Charities to Be More Inclusive”