Opportunity Finance Institutions: Side by Side, FY 2020 23rd Edition
Side by Side is an annual reference guide for industry practitioners, investors, and others interested in assessing the activity and performance of the opportunity finance industry. It presents data from OFN member financial institutions and includes peer group analyses for the primary financing sectors.
This report provides information on 269 CDFIs in the OFN membership. The vast majority (248) of these institutions are loan funds with the balance being 17 credit unions, three banks, and one venture capital fund. The data source is CDFIs’ FY 2020 OFN annual member survey.
In new research supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Opportunity Finance Network shows the traditional measure of persistent poverty by county severely undercounts the number of Americans living in entrenched poverty and is less geographically inclusive of rural and urban communities alike.
The paper posits that measuring persistent poverty at a census tract level offers a more equitable and accurate methodology and has profound implications for many CDFIs.
A county measure suggests that nearly half of CDFIs have no lending activity in these areas. A census tract measure shows that the vast majority of CDFIs lend in persistent poverty areas and that nearly 40 percent of all CDFI lending is in these areas, a testament to the CDFI industry’s targeting of highly vulnerable rural and urban communities.
Persistent Poverty and the Prevalence of CDFIs offers:
Foreword by Partners for Rural Transformation
Data comparison of persistent poverty when measured by census tract and county, including overview of CDFI lending
Borrower stories and tracking resources
Recommendations for CDFIs, policymakers, funders, and investors
To find and download other OFN publications, visit the Open Forum library on CDFI Connect, a digital space for OFN members, allies, funders, investors and other CDFI industry supporters to network, collaborate, and learn.