1.2 Million Pages on Home Mortgage Loans

WASHINGTON - So how do you get a copy of a 1.2 million-page report anyway?

That's the logistical question facing people interested in seeing the Federal Reserve System's massive study on mortgage lending patterns.

The report, formally released Monday, has attracted widespread attention because it says a minority person's mortgage application is 2.4 times as likely as a white's to be turned down.

Much Is Revealed

The study provides details about the lending habits of 9,281 institutions. Included are mortgage rejection rates and the types of loans being made. Rival banks, consumer activists, and lawmakers are expected to pore over the results.

Here's how the data are being distributed:

* The full report can be obtained on three magnetic tapes from the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council. The cost: $500. Printed reports on individual institutions also can be bought, for $50 each. The phone number for this umbrella agency is 202-357-0177.

* Aggregate mortgage data for all the institutions are available from the FFIEC on tape. Cost: $500.

* The agency also has aggregate data for each of 341 metropolitan statistical areas. The reports are $50 each.

* Every bank must make its own data available to the public at its lead branch in any metropolitan statistical area. Information on local banks will also be available at central libraries. The libraries will have composite information for the area as well.

Abundance of Details

The data are a treasure trove of information on home lending. The loan information is broken down by census tract, enabling comparisions among loan applicants from similar neighborhoods and, therefore, similar incomes.

The reports also detail what types of mortgage loans a bank is making: for purchase, refinancing, or improvement. The reports indicate, too, whether a mortgage was made directly by a bank or with backing by a government agency like the Veterans Administration.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.