Summary of Gender-Related Differences in Credit Use and Credit Scores

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Gender-Related Differences in Credit Use and Credit Scores summary

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It’s no secret that equally qualified men and women have different experiences in the labor market. But the Federal Reserve’s consumer finance chief Geng Li looks into how credit market outcomes vary for a sampling of single American men and women, after adjusting such factors as income and education. He works around the data limitations of the US Equal Opportunity Credit Act, which restricts lenders from basing credit decisions on gender, so he merely scratches the surface of the topic. Still, getAbstract suggests this succinct report to policy experts and financial services professionals for the useful nuggets of information it offers on credit divergences between the sexes.

About the Author

Geng Li is chief of the consumer finance section at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.


Considering how big a role credit availability plays in helping people build wealth and achieve financial stability, surprisingly little information is available on how the experiences of men and women vary in the credit market. In the fallout from the 2008 financial crisis, for instance, when easy credit led to many house foreclosures and defaults on mortgages, it has become more difficult for first-time homebuyers to access credit. The US Equal Opportunity Credit Act’s restriction on tying credit availability to gender means that lenders don’t collect such...

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