Publications

Alternative Data in the US: Progress, Promise, and Paralysis

This paper highlights new solutions in the alternative data and proven payment data space that are benefiting the credit invisible but advocates that the first-best solution for consumers would be pervasive full-file credit reporting of utility, telecom, and rental payment data directly to the main consumer databases operated by the nationwide CRAs.

Data Flows, Technology, and the Need for National Privacy Legislation

Does being a victim of a data breach increase the risk of identity theft? In this first-of-its-kind joint-study with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Technology Engagement Center, which we hope will contribute to informed and evidence-based federal preemptive privacy legislation, no evidence is found that data breaches lead to increased consumer harm.

FHFA Credit Score Request for Comments Input

In these comments we support the FHFA’s effort to update the credit score used/required by the GSEs and explore how more than one score could be considered or permitted. We wish the FHFA would go further and create a more flexible process that would allow the credit score(s) used to be updated more regularly and also permit more credit score flexibility to enable scores that use alternative data to be utilized.

Crypto-currencies: Misnamed, Misunderstood, and a Mistake for Casual Investors

Let me begin by declaring that Bitcoin has jumped the shark. Hopefully, the news of exchanges being shut down and wild price swings will provide sufficient red flags to potential investors so that they may avoid being drawn into¬†this self-evident¬†Ponzi scheme. Alas, this likely does not mean the end for crypto-currencies…for better or for worse.

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The Impact of Credit Reporting and Credit Scoring on the MFI Sector

This research analyzes a series of questions pertaining to the impacts on microfinance institutions (MFIs) when using credit bureau data (conventionally referred to as credit files) for purposes of underwriting credit; for the same purposes, it also analyzes credit scoring models and credit decisioning platforms that use credit bureau data.

Data Protection and Credit Information Sharing

This white paper discusses different data protection regimes and argues that whether a system is considered siloed or omnibus what really matters (in a practical sense) are the details and whether there is sufficient regulatory flexibility to account for “on the ground” realities. Credit information sharing is a focus of the white paper.

Changing the Lending Landscape: Credit Deserts, the Credit Invisible, and Data Gaps in Silicon Valley

This report presents findings from the pilot effort of the Credit Deserts Project, which aims to map the incidence of Credit Invisibility, in which consumers have credit reports with no or insufficient data with which to generate a traditional credit score. Previous research suggests that Credit Invisibles disproportionately live in lower income areas of communities and help form what we call Credit Deserts.