WASHINGTON - The way Office of Thrift Supervision Director Ellen Seidman sees it, the Community Reinvestment Act is not merely a legal requirement, it is the future of community banking.

To survive in an ever-consolidating industry, she said in an interview, thrifts must reach out to the customers that CRA targets - lower-income people, minority group members, immigrants, and those living in rural America or on Indian triba lands.

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