Changes in Wealth of Low-Income Neighborhood Residents: A Local View of the Financial Crisis

Brief

Changes in Wealth of Low-Income Neighborhood Residents: A Local View of the Financial Crisis

Abstract

Using longitudinal Making Connections Survey data on 2,500 families in low-income neighborhoods, this fact sheet finds that access to credit and residents perceptions of their neighborhood are all related to wealth holdings, even after controlling for household characteristics. Residents who believed their neighborhood had shared values increased their total debt and equity from 2005/06 to 2008/09. High rates of subprime lending were associated with less saving and borrowing, perhaps signaling less access to credit. Our findings suggest that both household and place characteristics matter to wealth families accrue and illustrate the importance of paying attention to place and local conditions.

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