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Wells Fargo Extends Outreach in Underserved Communities

piggybank-cashWells Fargo unveiled new corporate social responsibility (CSR) goals that are intended to address global social, economic, and environmental challenges, including a multibillion-dollar mortgage pledge to minority and low-income communities.

The financial institution stated that the new CSR goals include significant commitments in home and small business lending, community investment, operational efficiency, and corporate philanthropy, among other things, through 2020.

Wells Fargo’s 2015 CSR report outlines goals that the company will focus on through the end of 2020 to recognize and respond to three important priorities:

  •    The demographic and cultural shifts taking place in society;
  •    The financial needs of underserved individuals and communities; and,
  •    The impacts of climate change and natural resource constraints on communities and customers.

The goals reflect the company’s "longstanding commitment to delivering practical solutions for the customers and communities it serves," the announcement said.

According to the bank, more than $665 million in corporate philanthropic giving will be administered by 2020 to address social, economic, and environmental needs, as well as local nonprofits in the communities in which Wells Fargo operates.

On the economic empowerment front, Wells Fargo announced that its main focus is "strengthening individual financial knowledge and improving economic opportunities in underserved communities through products, services and financial tools."

The 2020 economic commitment goals will include $500 million in philanthropic giving to critical economic needs such as financial education and affordable housing. In addition, the bank will give $150 billion in mortgage originations to minority households and $70 billion in mortgage originations to low-to moderate-income households through retail and correspondent networks.

More than 4,000 lower-income homebuyers will receive education and down payment assistance to through Wells Fargo's LIFT programs, bringing total homeowners created to more than 15,000 by 2020. The company also plans to help build and improve 1,000 homes by 2020 to support of affordable housing initiatives serving low-and moderate-income households, including for seniors, veterans, and families

According to Wells Fargo, $75 million in grants and lending will be offered to help diverse-owned small businesses access capital and technical assistance and 12 million customers will receive their credit scores and overall financial health support.

“To continue to succeed as a global bank, Wells Fargo must help address these social, economic, and environmental challenges and strengthen the communities in which we operate for current and future generations,” said Wells Fargo Chairman and CEO John Stumpf. “Our efforts to integrate CSR strategies across all aspects of our business, products, and culture position us to have a positive and critical impact on people, industries, and the broader global economy when and where it matters most.”

Click here to view Wells Fargo's 2015 Corporate Social Responsibility Report.

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