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Thursday, March 21, 2019

Federal Reserve Board Launches Article Series for Consumers and Communities

The Federal Reserve Board has launched Consumer & Community Context, a new article series that features original analysis about the financial conditions and experiences of consumers and communities, including traditionally underserved and economically vulnerable households and neighborhoods. The inaugural issue covers the theme of student loans. It includes articles covering the impact that rising student loan debt levels may have on homeownership rates among young adults, as well as the relationship between the amount of student loan debt individuals acquire and their decisions to live in rural or urban areas.

The article series intends to increase public understanding of consumer and community financial well-being and risk concerns. It will be published periodically throughout the year, and each issue will have a theme. Authors contributing to the series are employees of the Federal Reserve Board or Federal Reserve System.

To subscribe to this series, please send an email to:

St. Louis Fed Policy Insight Series Shine Light on the Duty to Serve Program

Two recent St. Louis Fed reports provide information on Duty to Serve (DTS), a program that requires Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to take measures in the secondary mortgage market that will lead to additional housing options for individuals and families with very low, low and moderate income. The first Policy Insight provided an overview of the program–how it came to be, who the key players are, how the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) will be rated and more. The second Policy Insight focuses on the specific actions Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac intend to take before December 2020 to fulfill their commitment to meet the needs of three markets: manufactured housing, rural housing and affordable housing preservation. The actions by the GSEs include loan product development and/or loan purchase, investment, outreach and research. DTS has the potential to substantially impact affordable housing in the U.S. through the secondary mortgage market. The objective of the latest Policy Insight is to highlight the program in a manner that is useful to affordable housing practitioners in an effort to maximize opportunities as they arise.