Partners Update - September/October 2012 - Announcements and Recommended Reading

Announcements and Recommended Reading

New York Fed Releases Research on Distressed Residential Real Estate
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York recently posted new data about the distressed residential real estate market, including an inventory of real estate owned (REO) properties. Using interactive maps and charts, viewers can explore the current status and potential future scenarios for REO properties nationally and at the state level.

Alternative Financial Services Grow, and So Do the Unbanked and Underbanked
Despite improvements in the general economy, 20.1 percent of U.S. households are underbanked and 8.2 percent are completely unbanked. These populations tend to rely more on alternative financial services (AFS). A Portals and Rails post asks, will their growth fuel AFS growth?

Wanted: Jobs 2.0 in the Rural Southeast
Jobs and income in rural communities have lagged those in cities for many years. As manufacturing jobs have diminished over the decades, small towns and rural areas face a growing challenge to remain economically healthy. How can rural communities position themselves for revitalization and job growth? A recent EconSouth article examines the topic.

Will the Housing Market Recovery Leave the Hardest-Hit Neighborhoods Behind?
The Southeast's housing market swoon left few unscathed, but some areas were hit harder than others. As signs of a nascent recovery become more evident, how will the hardest-hit areas be affected? A macroblog post looks at new survey data to discuss the uneven progress.

All Federal Benefit Payments to Go Electronic
Effective March 1, 2013, the U.S. Treasury Department will phase out paper checks and require all federal benefit and nontax payments—including federal wage, retirement, and vendor payments—to be made electronically. Benefit recipients will be able to get their funds either through direct deposit to a bank or credit union or by applying for a debit card called Direct Express®. Visit the Go Direct webpage to learn how to enroll in, or transition to, electronic federal benefit payments.

Student Loan Debt Report Released by Kansas City Fed
Student loan debt has gained the attention of both the public and policymakers because of its rapid increase over the last decade. A new report by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City provides an overview of the student loan market, presents current statistics that highlight student loan debt burdens and delinquency rates, and discusses concerns among many Americans about student loans, including their fiscal impact. View the full report, "Student Loans: Overview and Issues," on the Kansas City Fed's website.

Hurricane Isaac Recovery and Rebuilding Resources
Though Isaac was a Category 1 hurricane, it caused widespread destruction as it hit parts of the Southeast in late August. Check out resources available for people coping in the storm's wake. Individuals and business owners in Louisiana and Mississippi who sustained losses in the counties and parishes designated in the major disaster declarations can apply for assistance by registering online at or by web-enabled mobile device at Alternatively, those affected may call 800-621-FEMA (3362) or visit a disaster recovery center in the designated counties and parishes.