Rep. Waters seeks answers on Navy Federal Credit Union’s lending practices

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) this week called for the nation’s largest credit union to “explain to Congress and their members” media reports alleging that it denied mortgage approvals to more than half of Black applicants. Navy Federal Credit Union approved more than 75% of the White borrowers who applied for a new conventional home purchase mortgage in 2022, but less than 50% of Black borrowers who applied for the same type of loan were approved, CNN reported last week. The approval gap between white and Black applicants was the largest of any of the 50 lenders that originated the most mortgage loans last year.

In a statement, Waters, who is the ranking member of the House Financial Service Committee, said she was “appalled and shocked” that Navy Federal has “routinely engaged in a pattern of discrimination.” She also called on the CPFB, National Credit Union Administration and other regulators to investigate the credit union’s lending practices.

“As a private institution that bears the name of an esteemed branch of the United States military, Navy Federal must explain both to Congress and their members how such practices took place, what immediate steps are being taken to correct the harm done, and who in management will be held responsible,” Waters said. “Its leadership should also share to what extent they prioritize diversity and inclusion, including on their management team and board, as well as in their hiring, promoting and contracting practices.”