BBVA Compass is planning to direct $11 billion to lower-income communities.

The $76 billion-asset company's pledge includes $6.2 billion to small businesses and $1.8 billion in community development loans.

The commitment by U.S. arm of Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria in Spain comes three months after it disclosed in a regulatory filing that it expects to receive a poor Community Reinvestment Act rating from the Federal Reserve Board. BBVA said in a press release this week that it will begin rolling out its new investments and services next year.

BBVA Compass also plans to use $2.1 billion to offer mortgages in low- to moderate-income neighborhoods. The bank will also emphasize community health clinics and other medical facility growth in low-income areas.

After acknowledging its poor CRA rating, BBVA hired Chris McGillis, once SunTrust Bank's head of community reinvestment, to become its CRA program administration director.

"We have made significant enhancements to our CRA program in terms of staffing, governance and overall strategy," Reymundo Ocañas, BBVA Compass' director of corporate responsibility and reputation, said in the recent release.

BBVA's community reinvestment team met last week in Washington with several low-income housing and community development activist groups to discuss better community involvement.


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