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Amid PPP Abuse Lenders Like Live Oak Bank Issue Prurient Denial To Inner City Press Data Q

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - CJR - PFT

SDNY COURT / SOUTH BRONX, Oct 1 –     Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, fair lending and the Community Reinvestment Act are taking a back seat, or worse. Some banks to which CRA applies are excluding smaller businesses and those in communities of color. And some banks bragging about the PPP loans won't provide any information - we are Pressing.

   Inner City Press / Community on the Move has begun contacting both banks and non-banks for their Paycheck Protection Program data. Without yet getting into the full results, note that Inner City Press asked Live Oak Bank, twice: "On behalf of Inner City Press / Community on the Move and its Fair Finance Watch project, and in my personal capacity, this is a formal request for Live Oak's full CRA Public File and pressingly for the following with regard to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL), in light of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for this information:  1. How many loans has Live Oak made pursuant to the programs?  2. What is the total dollar amount of loans made pursuant to the program  3. What is the average loan size? ... 9. What percentage of your PPP loans are to borrowers with a previous borrowing relationship with your institution?"

  Their SVP for communications sent only the CRA file, performance evaluation and strategic plan - no date. Now after months of non response on data by Live Oak Bank, on October 1 came this:

"Thank you for your interest in Live Oak Bank Based on your responses, our loan programs are not a fit for your business at this time. Some of the most common reasons for this are listed below:   Loan amount is below our minimum   Business is not based in the United States   FICO credit score does not meet our minimum requirements   Prior bankruptcy   Prior loss to creditors or government   Pending legal action   Presently suspended, debarred, proposed for debarment, declared ineligible or voluntarily excluded from participation in this transaction by any Federal department or agency   Revenues derived from gambling, loan packaging, or from the sale of products or services, or the presentation of any depiction, displays or live performances, of a prurient sexual nature."
Oh really... We'll have more on this.

Meanwhile the Fed is pushing forward to approve bank merger applications, like Banco Bradesco - BAC which Fair Finance Watch has been opposing, as it has commented to the OCC against the acquisition of State Farm's health savings account business by Webster Bank, based in part of Webster's problematic Paycheck Protection Program performance.

   Fintechs and other non-bank financial firms are now at the PPP trough and are getting sued. For example, there is the lawsuit filed as a class action against Fountainhead Commercial Capital LLC on May 6, noting the finance firm advertised that it would process loan requests on a first-come, first-served basis and then stealthly shuffled its line of PPP applicants so that it would lock down the largest lending fees first.

     Meanwhile Paulson of the OCC, which wants to admit fintechs into banking without regulation, says no one is in PPP for the money. This while in response to Inner City Press' FOIA request for Otting's schedule the OCC redacted the names of banks that he met without, and obscured others. (A FOIA appeal has been filed.)

   Amid all this, Fair Finance Watch and Inner City Press / Community on the Move are launching a new project. Watch this site.


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