A New York financial watch dog organization claims the merger of Whitney Bank with Mississippi-based Hancock Bank is a bad deal for minorities.
The Times-Picayune reports that Inner City Press/Fair Finance Watch of New York, in a letter of opposition sent to the Federal Reserve March 6, lists gaps between the loan approval rates for whites and blacks who applied for home loans through Hancock Bank. Fair Finance executive director Matthew Lee says Hancock’s record of home loans for minorities is worse than Whitney’s, but did not say what Whitney’s record is.
A Hancock spokesman responded in a statement and said the information the group based its complaint on “provides a very limited view of covered loans or conditions such as factors related to creditworthiness:”
In checking out the merger, Lee’s group looked at data that Hancock reported under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act, a 1975 law that requires banks to report loan data so that the Federal Reserve can monitor whether banks are serving their communities’ housing needs and whether they’re discriminating.
The protest highlights six Gulf Coast markets where there are racial gaps in Hancock’s lending.
In Hancock’s hometown of Gulfport, Miss., for example, the bank denied conventional home loans to African-American and Hispanic applicants twice as often as those of white applicants, Fair Finance Watch said.
The complaint could further slow the timeline for the Whitney-Hancock merger to close, a timeline The Times-Pic says is already moving slower than Hancock had planned.
Read more on the Fair Finance complaint here.
For more on the Whitney-Hancock merger, check out The Independent Weekly’s Feb. 16 story “Don’t Bank On It.”
1,595 rigs were exploring for oil and 332 for gas. A year ago there were 1,738 active rigs.
Prestigious honor annually recognizes a single attorney for excellence in public interest/pro bono work.
JPMorgan Chase is giving $1 million to Louisiana's community and technical colleges, to help with workforce training efforts to match students to available jobs.
Law firm unveils newly renovated 200-year-old building.
UL grad named web developer at BBR Creative
Lafayette-based emergency department staffing and management company raises $120 million in senior credit facilities through GE Capital, Healthcare Financial Services.
High-rise apartment building, parking garage, hotel and retail part of new development.
The number of Louisianans with jobs continued to set records in September, but the state's unemployment rate kept rising.
Louisiana is drowning, quickly.
An investment group led by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets will buy the Louisiana power company Cleco for $3.4 billion.
Local developer’s Lake Charles Gardens LLC purchases buildings and leases; land still owned by Dugas family.
Economist Loren Scott says Louisiana is in the midst of an industrial boom unlike any other in its history, with more than $100 billion in industrial projects either under construction or in the engineering and design phase.
The Louisiana Treasury holds $18 million in Israel Bonds — bonds that earn 2.868 percent when the three-year U.S. Treasury is yielding 1.08 percent.
ABiz celebrates another class of Acadiana's most influential female trailblazers, the Lourdes Foundation honors a local philanthropist and MedExpress in Opelousas celebrates its 22nd year as the “little ambulance service that could.”
Is Louisiana’s O&G industry ready to head south of the border?
Downtown’s newest live-work space for creatives doubles as a gallery for other upcoming artists to show their work.
A maritime case originating in Lafayette federal court could become a game changer for the oil and gas industry.
Here’s what’s at stake in the November Senate race — regardless of whether Republicans gain control of the upper chamber.
From the publisher’s in-box: ABiz reaches out to Lake Charles, time to “Come Home, Louisiana,” and now accepting nominations for Entrepreneur of the Year.
In late September Cleco and UL Lafayette showed off the Cleco Alternative Energy Center, where researchers explore ways to generate power by using renewable resources.
The most recent promotions, hirings and announcements from Acadiana's biz community.
While Amendments 1 and 2 will shield some health care providers from the budgetary whims of Gov. Jindal, they could make higher ed even more vulnerable to cuts.
Age 60 looks good on the country’s second-largest oil and gas show.
Local pieces and logo-emblazoned corporate gifts
Let’s show how much we care what it looks like.