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#780 - 02/26/01 03:06 PM Race & National Origin Definitions
Anonymous
Unregistered

I know this may come across as a 'stupid' question, BUT - can anyone direct me to an 'official' source of 'definitions' for the various race/national origin categories used to collect government monitoring information?

Unbelievable as it may seem, a recent compliance monitoring review has raised the question of whether we are correctly catagorizing 'Asian Indian' applicants. It seems self-evident (to me, at least) that persons of this ethnic origin should be reported in the "Asian or Pacific Islander' category - yet, I cannot seem to find definitive definitions under Reg B or Reg C regulations. Furthermore, our compliance auditor disagrees,

I did find a definition on the U.S. Census Bureau website which states: "'Asian' refers to those having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent."

So far, this is the only 'definition' I've been able to locate. If anyone can direct me to a regulatory definition, I'd be most grateful.


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#781 - 02/26/01 03:11 PM Re: Race & National Origin Definitions
John Burnett Offline
10K Club
John Burnett
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 39,641
Cape Cod
This may be naive, but unless you're adding the monitoring information yourselves (for persons who elect not to provide the information themselves), shouldn't you just use the information the applicant supplies?

We have this issue from time to time with natives of the Azores, some of whom refuse to be "pigeon-holed" by the categories provided.

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John S. Burnett
BankersOnline.com
Fighting for Compliance since 1976
Bankers' Threads User #8

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#782 - 02/27/01 05:34 AM Re: Race & National Origin Definitions
Princess Romeo Offline

Power Poster
Princess Romeo
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 8,272
Where the heart is
In my years of filing HMDA reports, what I have found interesting are the people who indicate racial category "6" - Other, and then go on to specify something like "American" or "Lithuanian" or "Mixed Ancestry." Now the official rules for HMDA say that you must report whatever the applicant indicates, so there is no second guessing even if a person who appears to clearly belong to a certain group indicates a different group.

What I found interesting was each case, the person who made this specification was someone who works for, or USED to work for, the U.S. Government!

The things that make you say "Hmm....."

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CRCM,CAMS
Regulations are a poor substitute for ethics.
Just sayin'

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#783 - 02/28/01 08:39 PM Re: Race & National Origin Definitions
D. Whitney Offline
New Poster
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 22
Hermitage PA US
The only definitions of race that I have been able to locate are in the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission rules. I'm sorry that I don't have the legal cite - my HR dept. copied a page from their book for me over 6 yrs. ago and I've kept it in my HMDA training folder ever since.

WHITE (not of Hispanic origin) -- All persons having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, North Africa, or the Middle East. (I give Egypt as an example of northern Africa and Iran & Iraq as examples of Middle East, when I do my HMDA training.)

BLACK (not of Hispanic origin) -- All persons having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa.

HISPANIC -- All persons of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.

ASIAN or PACIFIC ISLANDER -- All persons having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent, or the Pacific Islands. This area includes, for example, China, India, Japan, Korea, the Philippine Islands, and Samoa.

AMERICAN INDIAN or ALASKIAN NATIVE -- All persons having origins in any of the original peoples of North America, AND who maintain cultural identification through tribal affiliation or community recognition.

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Any opinion stated above is mine alone and not my employer's.

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Any opinion stated above is mine alone and not my employer's.

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#784 - 02/28/01 10:54 PM Re: Race & National Origin Definitions
Al Miller Offline
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Al Miller
Joined: Oct 2000
Posts: 2,416
Pleasanton CA USA
The Bureau of the Census has definitions. For the 1990 Census, the definitions can be found at:
http://www.census.gov/prod/cen1990/cph-r/cph-r-1b.pdf

It is an 85 page document. Race definitions start at the bottom of page 50 of 85 (Adobe numbering- that page shows 45 at the bottom).

I don't know if the 2000 Census definitions are available yet, but I beleive that they expanded the choices and allowed split designations. I wonder if HMDA will be revised when the Census information is released.

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Al Miller, CRCM
Fremont Bank (CA)
(510) 790-5825
(510) 505-5211 FAX

Opinions expressed are my own and not necessarily shared by my employer.

_________________________
Al Miller, CRCM
Opinions expressed are my own and not necessarily shared by my employer.

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#785 - 03/03/01 05:21 AM Re: Race & National Origin Definitions
Lucy Griffin Offline

Diamond Poster
Lucy Griffin
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 1,544
The categories used in ECOA and HMDA are set by OMB. For the future, that means no real change in the existing categories but the "other" category is being deleted. This leaves the question of people from the middle East and the Indian subcontinent unanswered. In our market area, this is a significant population that will go uncounted because they can choose their category and none will be quite accurate.

The procedure you should follow is to let the applicant indicate. Whatever the applicant chooses is "correct." You don't change it any more than you fool with Mother Nature. The problem comes when you ask loan officers to fill in the information. So far, no help from OMB. It's only going to get more confusing.


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