Subprime Crisis May Cost Minorities $256 Million

Boston–The subprime mortgage crisis may be the worst financial loss in U.S. history for minorities, costing blacks and Hispanics up to $256 billion, according to a new study.The “Foreclosed: The State of the Dream 2008″ report, issued by Boston-based nonprofit awareness group United for a Fair Economy, said blacks stand to lose $71.5 to $121.6 billion on high-cost mortgages issued in the past eight years; Hispanics could lose $75.8 to $128.9 billion, The Boston Herald reported Wednesday.Researchers called it the “greatest loss of wealth for communities and individuals of color in modern U.S. history,” saying the subprime crisis “at first glance seems to have nothing to do with race or ethnicity, [but is] actually steeped in discrimination.”The report cited government mortgage data that said 41 percent of blacks and 32.8 percent of Hispanics who bought homes in Boston or five other major cities in recent years had high-cost loans. Only 6.9 percent of whites used the same type of mortgages.The disparity also played out in upper-income buyers, according to the study, which found that 54.4 percent of blacks and 48.9 percent of Hispanics used high-cost loans, compared with 16.4 percent of higher-income white buyers.