Meltdown: The Financial Crisis, Consumer Protection, and the Road Forward

Shelterforce, November 6th, 2017: With Meltdown: The Financial Crisis, Consumer Protection, and the Road Forward, Larry Kirsch and Greg Squires provide a valuable service in documenting how and why the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) came into being to protect consumers from financial exploitation and how it was envisioned as a key agency in preventing another financial catastrophe.

“ This book is the first of this type and hopefully sets a trend for evaluating the new federal oversight established after the Great Recession.

Kirsch’s and Squires’ book could best be described as a documentary-style political economy of the financial crisis and subsequent policy responses. They describe the genesis of the idea for the agency (a white paper by senior Obama White House staff led by Michael Barr), the economic motivations for the agency, the politics propelling and also inhibiting the agency, and key players including Richard Cordray, former “Jeopardy” champion and first agency director. The book ends with two case studies illustrating the CFPB’s approach, success, and limitations.”

Review by Josh Silver, Senior Policy Analyst at NCRC. This review originally appeared in Shelterforce on October 30th, 2017.

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Redlining and Neighborhood Health

Before the pandemic devastated minority communities, banks and government officials starved them of capital.

Lower-income and minority neighborhoods that were intentionally cut off from lending and investment decades ago today suffer not only from reduced wealth and greater poverty, but from lower life expectancy and higher prevalence of chronic diseases that are risk factors for poor outcomes from COVID-19, a new study shows.

The new study, from the National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) with researchers from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health and the University of Richmond’s Digital Scholarship Lab, compared 1930’s maps of government-sanctioned lending discrimination zones with current census and public health data.

Table of Content

  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction
  • Redlining, the HOLC Maps and Segregation
  • Segregation, Public Health and COVID-19
  • Methods
  • Results
  • Discussion
  • Conclusion and Policy Recommendations
  • Citations
  • Appendix

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