"The structure of today's mortgage market does not serve Latinos well," a housing policy analyst for the National Council of La Raza told a Federal Reserve Board hearing June 9.Speaking at the Fed hearing in Philadelphia, Janice Bowdler said Latino consumers are more likely to choose a provider by relationship than by price. The most popular products in the Latino community are payment-option mortgages, 100% financing, and stated-income loans from subprime lenders, she said, adding that even when prime lenders advertise to Latinos, they are marketing those products and not the conventional products available from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. There are products available, but there is no incentive for originators to use them, she said. Ms. Bowdler concluded her remarks by noting that market intermediaries such as mortgage brokers do play an important role, but she said improved accountability standards are needed to protect consumers.

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