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January 3, 2013

Regulators Cut J.P. Morgan Community-Lending Grade

“Regulators twice in the past six months disclosed downgrades of J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.’s community-lending practices, a rare occurrence for any large U.S. bank.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency lowered J.P. Morgan Chase’s primary deposit-taking bank and credit-card-lending unit to “satisfactory” from “outstanding” after examining their performance under a law designed to encourage banks to lend to low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. Regulators examine banks’ compliance with this law, called the Community Reinvestment Act, every few years.

J.P. Morgan, the largest U.S. bank by assets, is the only one of the four biggest commercial lenders to have a “satisfactory” CRA rating attached to its primary bank as well as its credit-card operations. The main deposit-taking banks at Bank of America Corp., Wells Fargo & Co. and Citigroup Inc. all scored “outstanding” in their most recent exams. Bank of America’s credit-card unit, FIA Card Services NA, also scored a “satisfactory.””


Read Dan Fitzpatrick’s full Wall Street Journal article here

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