Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Community Development

Increasing Access to Capital: Could Better Measurement of Social and Environmental Outcomes Entice More Institutional Investment Capital into Underserved Communities?

Author(s):

August 2009

Community Development Investment Review

The role of capital in promoting growth is more apparent than ever as communities across the country struggle to bolster sagging economies and stem job losses brought on by the credit crunch. Although it may seem now that all markets are undercapitalized, some areas are chronically undercapitalized, including inner-city urban markets, rural markets, low-income communities, and enterprises owned by minorities and women or serving undervalued customer bases. Their struggle for capital means a struggle to thrive, and for owners, entrepreneurs, employees, customers, and communities, whether they will have a chance to reap the benefits of economic opportunity.

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