Consumer & Community Context features analysis about the financial conditions and experiences of consumers and communities, including traditionally underserved and economically vulnerable households and neighborhoods.


November 28, 2023: Nuts and Bolts of Today’s Auto Finance Market
The seventh issue of Consumer & Community Context delves into the auto finance market. It unpacks the role of dealers, the different types of providers of financing, and the products available to auto buyers. The article also reviews the post-pandemic state of the market and potential consumer risks.

July 28, 2023: Meeting Small-Dollar Consumer Credit Needs: Old and New Choices
The sixth issue of Consumer & Community Context explores the use of small-dollar credit. It reviews traditional and new products offered by banks and nonbanks alike and considers how new data sources and technologies are used to offer these products to consumers. The discussion concludes with a look at whether and how these products may be serving consumers’ needs.


November 5, 2021: Examining the Pandemic's Economic Effects on Women
The fifth issue provides insights into the pandemic's economic impact on women, including childcare disruptions and employment, the financial challenges of single mothers, debt and access to credit, and the experiences of women-owned small businesses.


November 18, 2020: The Pandemic's Early Effects on Consumers and Communities
The fourth issue covers the topic of how consumers, communities, and community development organizations are responding to the pandemic. The first looks at select results from the Survey of Household Economics and Decisionmaking (SHED) to measure the economic impact of the pandemic; the second describes the operations of community development financial institutions and their roles responding to the pandemic; the third presents the results of an analysis of complaints consumers reported to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau about their experiences with financial institutions; and the fourth highlights the results of a survey of organizations providing services to low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities during the pandemic.

August 10, 2020: Two Tales of Changes in Retail Banking
The third issue covers the topic of changes in retail banking, and includes articles on the implications of faster payments for cash-flow constrained consumers; and the emergence of online-only subsidiaries of traditional brick-and-mortar banks.


November 4, 2019: Access to Financial Services Matters to Small Businesses
The second issue covers the topic of small businesses' access to capital, and includes articles on experiences of small business owners when searching for financing online; disparities in small business credit approval by race and ethnicity; and small businesses' access to financial services in low- and moderate-income communities.

January 16, 2019: At the Fed, Consumers and Communities Matter
The inaugural issue covers the theme of student loans, and includes articles covering the impact that rising student loan debt levels may have on homeownership rates among young adults; and the relationship between the amount of student loan debt individuals acquire and their decisions to live in rural or urban areas.

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Last Update: November 28, 2023