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More Americans will be able to access credits. Photo: Pixabay.

More Than Fair improves access and inclusion in credit

Civil rights organizations, consumer advocates and industry leaders have joined the initiative.

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The educational initiative, supported by the public and private sectors, as well as by non-profit organizations, seeks to make economic loans and credits granted more fair, transparent and inclusive.

Following the recent announcement of its launch, More Than Fair presented a website that will be used as the hub of a digital forum available to communities that need it most.

A Necessary Change

Considering that traditional credit scores have a history of more than 30 years, and that those in charge of assigning loans rely on them, access to affordable credit for buying homes, cars, personal expenses, among others, is quite limited.

Faced with this scenario, described by many as unfair and exclusionary, millions of Americans who could potentially qualify for credit are left behind, especially small business owners, young adults, recent immigrants, and low- and moderate-income families, especially in black and Hispanic communities.

More Than Fair seeks to change this landscape by employing artificial intelligence and data science to drive better credit results and reduce interest payments for users by about $103 billion per year.

Strong Reasons

The firms behind More Than Fair take into account the following aspects to support the initiative:

  1. America needs faster progress toward a more inclusive and affordable credit system nationwide.
  2. Modern technology and data science, under proper public and private regulation and supervision, can make more progress toward this goal than we’ve seen in decades.
  3. Fairness standards and testing requirements should apply equally to all lenders and all methods, irrespective of underlying technology or process.

Gary Cunningham, President and CEO of Prosperity Now, stated: “Prosperity Now is proud to join MoreThanFair, a powerful channel for increased transparency in lending and stronger credit solutions for Black and Brown consumers, innovators, and entrepreneurs. As long-standing champions of financial inclusion and access, we are excited to join this dynamic nonprofit and private sector alliance. As a national organization committed to building an economy that truly works for everyone, we proudly support this new effort, which we believe will bring us a step closer to closing the racial and ethnic wealth divide.”

Organizations supporting the More Than Fair initiative. Graphic: Business Wire.
Organizations supporting the More Than Fair initiative. Graphic: Business Wire.

Committed Companies

The organizations behind the initiative include: the American Fintech Council, Credit Builders Alliance, National Bankers Association (NBA), National Community Reinvestment Coalition, National Consumer Law Center, Prosperity Now, UnidosUS, Camino Financial, Cross River, Esusu, LendingClub, Oportun, SolasAI, Stratyfy, Upstart, and Zest AI.

Reactions 

Nicole Elam, CEO of the National Bankers Association, said: “Minority Depository Institutions have long been leaders in serving communities that traditional credit underwriting models have overlooked. The NBA is pleased to help launch the MoreThanFair community with fintechs, consumer advocates and civil rights firms to bring our unique perspective on credit access to the digital arena.”

“We are encouraged by the prospect for meaningful engagement with industry and with other advocacy organizations. As an organization that is committed to ensuring that financial institutions have community reinvestment obligations and comply with all consumer protection regulations, we hope that MoreThanFair becomes a vehicle for those goals,” pointed out Jesse Van Tol, President and CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition.

Nicholas Schmidt, CEO of SolasAI, noted: "Participating in the MoreThanFair community is a thrilling opportunity to collaborate with the most innovative and inclusive organizations in the consumer finance industry. We love to see such broad-based stakeholders, from the largest fintechs to the most influential public advocacy groups come together. At SolasAI we know from our many years of working with a large portion of financial institutions in America, that a tremendous opportunity exists to expand credit for under-served communities and others for whom traditional credit has not been an option. We are looking forward to providing the experience and knowledge of methods and policies that allow us all to work together in finding more inclusive practices and models.”

“As a female-founded technology startup, we understand what it is like to be in a category often discriminated against. Because of this, we made the conscious decision to use our knowledge and skills to help create a fairer, more inclusive — and more profitable — lending ecosystem. That’s why we build Stratyfy’s Unbias software, which — for the first time — allows lenders to get clarity into how their models are built to identify any discriminatory lending or biases in their practices. Additionally, they are provided with recommendations on optimizing their models to be more compliant, creating more lending opportunities more quickly, and helping to identify and increase revenue generation opportunities,” underlined Laura Kornhauser, CEO of Stratyfy.

About More Than Fair

It is a community of organizations dedicated to improving access to affordable and inclusive credit for American consumers and small businesses.

Using modern technology and data science, it can now make lending more inclusive, more transparent and fairer, something that will certainly help the public and private sectors to ensure that the models are properly supervised.

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