Majority white areas of California got more PPP loan money than Latino areas: UCLA study

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A staff member of Clinica Romero registers patients at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic.(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

A staff member of Clinica Romero registers patients at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic.(Genaro Molina / Los Angeles Times)

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Majority white areas of California received more money from the federal Paycheck Protection Program for small businesses than majority Latino areas did, according to a study by UCLA researchers.

The disparities arose primarily because the loans, which are awarded to businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, were distributed on a first-come, first-served basis by big banks, said Rodrigo Dominguez-Villegas, director of research for the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Initiative.

Larger businesses that had relationships with the big banks were better equipped to get the loans than smaller Latino businesses with fewer banking ties and less knowledge about how to apply, he said.

The disproportionate amount of PPP money going to wealthier, whiter areas may make economic and racial disparities worse across California, said the study by the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Initiative and Center for Neighborhood Knowledge, released on Wednesday.

Read the full story at LATimes.com.

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