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Wells Fargo Commits $2B to Support Housing Affordability

Wells Fargo has issued its second Inclusive Communities and Climate Bond, a $2 billion bond that will finance projects and programs supporting housing affordability, economic opportunity, renewable energy, and clean transportation.

“Through the issuance of this second Sustainability Bond, Wells Fargo is continuing our commitment to strong, resilient communities,” said Wells Fargo Chief Sustainability Officer Robyn Luhning. “These efforts are important for both our business and our corporate sustainability goals.”

Wells Fargo issued its first Inclusive Communities and Climate Bond in late May, $1 billion earmarked to support job creation and human and health services in minority communities, housing affordability for low- to moderate-income individuals and families, and the development of renewable energy resources.

“Wells Fargo’s first Sustainability Bond is intentionally designed to support job creation and human and health services in minority communities, housing affordability for low-to-moderate income individuals and families, and the development of renewable energy resources,” said Bill Daley, Vice Chairman of Public Affairs at Wells Fargo. “The focus on capital investment in moderate- and low-income, predominantly minority areas, and our partnership with diverse firms in the offering of this Sustainability Bond underscores Wells Fargo’s commitment to supporting historically marginalized communities, which have been some of the hardest hit by COVID-19 and the impacts of climate change.”

Five broker-dealers whose owners include people of color, women, and service-disabled veterans joined Wells Fargo Securities LLC to serve as bookrunners for the issuance. They, along with 19 additional broker-dealers whose owners are also from underrepresented groups, will receive 75% of the underwriting fees from the transaction. BurgherGray LLP, a minority-owned law firm, was retained as issuer’s co-counsel for the offering, together with Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP. Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP served as underwriters’ counsel.

“Wells Fargo’s inclusion of 24 diverse firms across all tiers of this transaction’s underwriting syndicate demonstrates the depth and breadth of the bank’s commitment to the diverse dealer community,” said Sam Ramirez Jr., Sam Ramirez Jr. Senior Managing Director of Samuel A. Ramirez & Company Inc., one of the broker-dealers involved in the issuance. “We applaud Wells Fargo for giving us, and other diverse firms, the opportunity to perform at the highest level. It is a visible example of their leadership in meaningful engagement with diverse firms.”

The Inclusive Communities and Climate Bond will be used toward housing affordability project design through the construction, building, expansion, or renovation of multifamily housing properties for low- and moderate-income populations that specifically qualify for HUD’s Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC), in which financing may be provided in the form of loans, equity investments, or investments in regional and national funds.

About Author: Eric C. Peck

Eric C. Peck has 20-plus years’ experience covering the mortgage industry, he most recently served as Editor-in-Chief for The Mortgage Press and National Mortgage Professional Magazine. Peck graduated from the New York Institute of Technology where he received his B.A. in Communication Arts/Media. After graduating, he began his professional career with Videography Magazine before landing in the mortgage space. Peck has edited three published books and has served as Copy Editor for Entrepreneur.com.
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