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University of Baltimore Law

Civil Rights and Discrimination

2001

Minorities

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Invisible Markets Netting Visible Results: When Sub-Prime Lending Becomes Predatory, Cassandra Jones Havard Oct 2001

Invisible Markets Netting Visible Results: When Sub-Prime Lending Becomes Predatory, Cassandra Jones Havard

All Faculty Scholarship

In this article, I argue that Ellison's metaphor of social invisibility—the societal undervaluing of minorities—is analogous to economic invisibility—the denial of fair access to credit to minorities. I then use the metaphor of invisibility as a basis for understanding the contemporary legal problem of predatory lending, or making credit available to borrowers at unreasonably high interest rates. Disguised as credit access to high-risk, underserved borrowers, predatory lending helps to create risk by offering borrowers products that do not adequately measure risk and that are not fairly priced.