CRA Lexicon

Area median income

The Agencies are the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation(FDIC).

Alternative delivery systems are non-branch delivery systems used by financial institutions to provide retail banking services to customers, such as Internet or online banking, mobile banking, remote deposit capture and 24-hour Internet banking kiosks.

Assessment area is the area that examiners evaluate for CRA performance.

Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA)

Innovativeness is a qualitative standard of lending, investment and service tests. A CRA evaluator would consider an activity innovative if it implements meaningful improvements to products, services or delivery systems that respond more effectively to customer and community needs.

Investment test reviews whether the investments have been considered under the lending or service tests and whether an affiliate’s investments have been claimed by another institution.

Lending test reviews the most recent HMDA and CRA disclosure statements, the interim HMDA Loan Application Register and any interim CRA loan data collected by the institution; a sample of consumer loans if consumer lending is a substantial majority of the institution’s business; and any other information that the institution elects to provide.

Traditional delivery systems are full-service branches of financial institutions.

Ratings substantial noncompliance, needs to improve, low satisfactory, high satisfactory and outstanding.

Responsiveness to credit and community development needs is criterion or consideration in all CRA tests. Responsiveness is the extent to which activities benefit low- and moderate-income individuals and geographies, designated disaster areas or distressed or underserved metropolitan middle-income geographies.

Service test evaluates the distribution of the institution’s branches among low-, moderate-, middle- and upper-income geographies in the institution’s assessment areas and its banking services, including hours of operation and available loan and deposit products. 

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