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Banks Rekindle Risky Lending To ‘Near Prime’ Borrowers


The word subprime has had a negative connotation ever since the financial crisis, but now that banks are back in business with risky borrowers they need a new phrase—“near prime” has replaced subprime.

During a Q2 earnings call JP Morgan Chase finance chief Marianne Lake said the bank has been lowering its credit-score requirements to lend to riskier borrowers, those who are “near prime." That’s the first time the bank has ever used that term, at least on earnings calls dating back to 2007, the Wall Street Journal reports.

But Lake didn’t coin the euphemism. Wells Fargo used it earlier this year while US Bancorp and TD Bank have been using it publicly since 2013. No matter what you call it,banks are clearly rekindling risky lending in an attempt to drum up new business. [WSJ]