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Sept 24, 2013

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Fed Fails CRA Litmus Test on M&T People's Endorsing Money Laundering Plus Redlining

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - ESPN

FEDERAL COURT / S Bronx, March 4 – Whether or not the U.S. Community Reinvestment Act will be again enforced by the Federal Reserve if new Governors join the Board is a remaining open question. Because the old Board's March 4 approval of merger of two redlining banks, M&T and People's United, is failed litmus test.

   Fair Finance Watch with Inner City Press exposed M&T as a redliner as well as money launderer; the first label applies to People's United as well. See, e.g., Journal Inquirer, "Challenge opposes M&T takeover of People’s United," by Adam Hushin, Fair Finance Watch, "a financial consumer watchdog group has asked federal regulators to deny Buffalo-based M&T Bank Corp.’s application to acquire People’s United Bank, based on what it claims is a record of discriminatory lending practices by M&T.

And see, Buffalo Business First, "Comments on the M&T/People's United merger," by Dan Miner, "Matthew Lee, executive director, Inner City Press/Fair Finance Watch, wrote in opposition and requested an extension to the public comment period."

  On the afternoon of Friday March 4, with new Governors pending, the old Governors hauled off and approved M&T's application. This as, in a rush, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York doled out an approval on a delegated basis - the Reserve Banks do not have the legal power to deny applications - a merger of Berkshire Bank, with a rare Needs to Improve CRA rating in New York. Fair Finance Watch immediately petitioned the (old) Governors for review; no answer, see here.

  Fair Finance Watch has asked that its petition be reviewed by the new Governors, as should be Toronto Dominion's First Horizon proposal. Watch this site.


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