Mortgage Loan Discrimination

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A government report finds it still matters who the Joneses are when it comes to borrowing money to buy a home.

The report by the Federal Reserve and other regulators shows significant disparities continue to exist between white mortgage loan applicants and minority applicants.

The report finds that minorities received loans with higher interest rates or other increased charges in greater percentages than white applicants. According to the report, 30.3 percent of loans for home purchases by African-Americans were higher-cost loans compared with 17.7 percent of loans for whites. The gap is higher than the percentage found in the 2005 survey.

The report also finds that applicants for home mortgages were turned down for loans at a slightly higher rate in 2006 than the previous year. Government regulators found the denial rate for all home loans was 29 percent last year, up from 27 percent in 2005.

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