Access to Banking Services - Press

January 4, 2016

By Peter Rudegeair, Emily Glazer, and Ruth Simon

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. spent about $8 billion this year on technology. But when it came to developing a new online loan for small business, the bank turned to an unlikely outsider.

May 26, 2015

By John Heltman

BALTIMORE — Even as the smoke was clearing from the riots that erupted in the streets of Baltimore late last month, policymakers zeroed in on the root causes of the unrest in the blighted neighborhoods that were most affected — lack of jobs, lack of opportunity, and a lack of investment.

January 23, 2015
Small businesses in low-income, majority minority neighborhoods in the Chicago area were less likely to receive loans between 2008 and 2012, according to a report from the Woodstock Institute, recipient of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. The report, which examines...
August 20, 2014

By Sarah Needleman

7:20 EDT - Amid a slow recovery in US small-business lending, a report out today suggests that small firms in low-income communities are struggling the most. Between 2008 and 2012, small businesses in such neighborhoods in the Chicago metro area received $817M less than their share of overall business credit, reports Woodstock Institute, a nonprofit that analyzed data from Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, US Census and Department of Housing and Urban Development. "Just like the housing recovery, it's not even," says the study's author, Spencer Cowan. "If we have areas that are not growing, those will slow down the recovery for the entire nation." (sarah.needleman@wsj.com; @saraheneedleman)

August 11, 2014

By Herb Weisbaum

Checking accounts—and the debit cards that come with them—should be a simple and straightforward way to handle routine financial transactions. And yet, many people simply don't understand the overdraft policies at their bank or credit union.

August 5, 2014

By Kevin Wack

For the last four years, U.S. regulators have been requiring banks to offer their customers a choice on overdraft fees. And in response, most consumers have opted not to run the risk of incurring large fees in exchange for the ability to spend more than they have.

May 27, 2014
Parents whose financial standing disqualify them from most loans may have an easier time borrowing to pay their children’s college costs under a U.S. government proposal to ease credit standards.
May 27, 2014
Parents whose financial standing disqualify them from most loans may have an easier time borrowing to pay their children’s college costs under a U.S. government proposal to ease credit standards.
March 7, 2014
An Oak Brook-based community bank that runs a successful motorcycle lending business has received the lowest possible rating from a federal regulator on its community lending track record.
January 31, 2012
By Becky Yerak January 31, 2012     Luz Pagan, 45, has been working as a part-time cashier at a discount store in downtown Chicago for nearly three years, her requests to become a full-time employee with benefits having gone nowhere.   The single mom and her 12-year-old son, Marvin, have been...
October 5, 2011
By Megan Cottrell October 5, 2011   Late last week, Bank of America made an announcement: they're going to start charging their customers $5 a month to use their debit cards.   Needless to say, the response wasn't positive. Bank of America serves about 1 out of every 2 Americans, and nobody seems...
October 2, 2011
By Bernie Tafoya October 2, 2011   With Bank of America announcing it plans to charge customers $5 a month for using their debit cards, consumers of other banks wonder if it’s only a matter of time before they’re going to face charges too. But there are alternatives.   As WBBM Newsradio’s Bernie...
August 6, 2011
  By Sarah Ostman August 6, 2011   A nonprofit organization specializing in economic development released “report cards” Thursday for several West Side banks, ranking their commitment to lending within Austin, keeping homeowners out of foreclosure, and supporting projects that promote employment...
July 23, 2011
By Becky Yerak July 23, 2011   On the sixth floor of Diamond Bank's headquarters on the outskirts of Woodfield Mall, Chief Executive Matt Gambs tells how he once had visions of building his Schaumburg-based thrift into a $500 million-asset institution.   It peaked at about $300 million but has...
April 5, 2011
April 5, 2011 CHICAGO – Today, as part of national Money Smart Week®, State Treasurer Dan Rutherford and Secretary of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) Brent Adams announce the launch of a state-wide effort to help working families improve their financial futures with “Illinois Saves...
March 10, 2011
By Maya Jackson Randall March 10, 2011 The fight over federal efforts to rein in financial firms' debit card processing fees continued Thursday, with bank officials presenting their case to Federal Reserve Board members and retailers rallying in the rain outside of the U.S. Capitol. At the Federal...
March 9, 2011
By Mary Ann Meyers March 9, 2011 A bipartisan movement is picking up steam in Springfield to repeal a law that cuts or eliminates unemployment benefits for thousands of Illinois seniors. One of those seniors is Nancy Solomon, a Chicago writer who says she has worked all her life and paid into...
February 14, 2011
By Diane Eastabrook February 14, 2011 SUSIE GHARIB: Eighteen American banks have failed so far this year and all were small, community banks. Local banks are the lifeblood of inner city neighborhoods and small towns, but many have been pummeled in the recession because of bad real estate loans. In...
January 12, 2011
By Becky Yerak January 12, 2011 Twenty-three Kmart stores in Illinois and three other markets are testing financial centers where consumers can cash checks and pay bills. Kmart joins Wal-Mart in offering basic services to consumers who have little if any access to traditional banks. "We're looking...
October 26, 2010
By Odette Yousef October 26, 2010   Bank failures have brought a wave of new lenders into many communities. These institutions are larger and more stable than the ones they have replaced, but they don’t have the same relationships with the communities they serve. For minority business owners that...
September 20, 2010
By Will Buss September 20, 2010 A new report shows a disparity in credit scores between metro-east communities that have predominantly white residents and towns with predominantly black residents. In its report, called "Bridging the Gap," the Woodstock Institute in Chicago concluded that these...
September 15, 2010
By Adam Doster September 15, 2010 It's common knowledge that the income gap between black and white Americans is on the rise. Less understood is the nation's enormous and persistent racial wealth gap, which takes into account the amount of assets a household owns versus what they owe. A report...
September 14, 2010
By Sandra Guy September 14, 2010   The highest percentage of Chicago-area residents with low credit scores live in the Englewood, West Englewood, West and East Garfield Park, Riverdale and Austin communities, further distancing their abilities to get favorable loans, credit, rent and options for...
September 14, 2010
September 14, 2010   Consumers living in minority communities were more likely to have non-prime credit scores, while individuals in mostly-white neighborhoods were more likely to have prime credit scores, according to a report released Tuesday by Woodstock Institute. The Chicago-based non-profit...
August 23, 2010
By Steve Chiotakis August 23, 2010 Chicago's ShoreBank is under new management. The community bank served the undeserved community for years. Dory Rand, president of the Woodstock Institute, talks with Steve Chiotakis about the significance of the bank for its customers and what will happen to it...
August 20, 2010
By Dakin Campbell and James Sterngold August 20, 2010 ShoreBank Corp., the Chicago lender operating under a Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. cease-and- desist order for 13 months, and seven other banks were shut by regulators as 2010 bank failures climbed to 118. ShoreBank’s 15 branches, including...
August 20, 2010
By Becky Yerak August 20, 2010   Chicago-based ShoreBank, which for more than three decades made loans to South and West siders who might not have gotten financing elsewhere to buy homes, apartment buildings and start businesses, failed Friday. It had struggled for months to raise sufficient funds...
July 28, 2010
By Adam Doster July 28, 2010 In one of the more consequential legislative changes this past session, the General Assembly passed a bill almost unanimously that will close a major loophole in the state's 2005 Payday Loan Reform Act. Thanks to the new law, lenders can no longer dish out a "consumer...
May 18, 2010
By Kyle Peterson and Scott Malone May 18, 2010 A troubled Chicago community bank with a philanthropic reputation has won uncommon Wall Street backing to save it from a government takeover, while similarly sized rivals flounder and fail. Privately owned ShoreBank, a community development lender on...