Giant Cash Economies Being Targeted By Banks

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Banks in the U.S. are becoming increasingly interested in the segment of low-and moderate-income people normally considered "poor credit risks."

According to studies by non-profit group Social Impact, there are massive cash-economies in inner cities, USBanker said.

The magazine reported that Cleveland, for instance, has a cash economy of $828 million or 12% of the city's total; Harlem has a $1-billion cash economy (16%), while Houston has $443 million, (12%).

The magazine reported that a large part of those markets is made up of immigrants. The Census Bureau projects that by 2050 ethnic populations will comprise half of the U.S. population. From 2000 to 2050, Hispanics are projected to grow 188%, Asians 213% and blacks 71%, it said.

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