A new project from the Center for Public Integrity takes a closer look at the global economic meltdown, and the 25 lenders responsible for the majority of high-interest or subprime loans from 2005-2007, “a period that marks the peak and collapse of the subprime boom.” CPI’s analysis found that:

  • At least 21 of the top 25 subprime lenders were financed by banks that received bailout money — through direct ownership, credit agreements, or huge purchases of loans for securitization.
  • Nine of the top 10 lenders were based in California, including all of the top five — Countrywide Financial Corp., Ameriquest Mortgage Co., New Century Financial Corp., First Franklin Corp., and Long Beach Mortgage Co.
  • Twenty of the top 25 subprime lenders have closed, stopped lending, or been sold to avoid bankruptcy. Most were non-bank lenders.
  • Eleven of the lenders on the list, including four recipients of bank bailout funds, have made payments to settle claims of widespread lending abuses.
  • >> View the project online.