HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo announced plans Monday for a multimillion-dollar audit of housing discrimination patterns nationwide that will include scrutinizing mortgage lenders.

The Department of Housing and Urban Development said it will commission a $7.5 million study of the extent to which lenders, landlords, real estate agents, and other housing industry participants mistreat minorities. Testers will pose as homebuyers and renters in thousands of transactions nationwide to measure prejudice in business practices. A final report is expected within a year.

Mr. Cuomo said more data are needed to understand and expose "the less obvious but more insidious '90s-style" racism. He noted that 72.5% of whites own homes but less fewer 50% of African-Americans and Hispanics are homeowners.

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