Financial Inclusion Depends on Data

July 6, 2021 by Alex Lintner

The financial services industry is poised to take advantage of the unprecedented availability of accurate, comprehensive, and timely data. Through increased lender adoption, the growing array of insightful data can create meaningful change and provide access to credit for more consumers and businesses than ever before.

At Experian, we feel we have a responsibility to consumers seeking credit. Ensuring lenders can obtain the insights needed for responsible lending is key to supporting this.

By leveraging the most accurate traditional credit data as well as expanded data sources that improve how risk can be assessed for thin-file or no-file consumers, lenders can form a precise picture of an individual’s financial situation and improve financial access for millions of Americans who have been unfairly excluded from the credit ecosystem.

Extend credit responsibly.

Some of the most predictive information available today is employment data, including how long a consumer has been at a job and how much they earn. Layering verified income and employment information with credit data can improve financial outcomes for consumers and help lenders say ‘yes’ when they otherwise couldn’t or wouldn’t.

To help, Experian has released Experian Verify™ – a suite of solutions that provide lenders with real-time access to verified information about a consumer’s income and employment status.

Through Experian Verify, credit card, personal loan, auto and mortgage lenders have near-instant access to millions of active employer records to verify an applicant’s income and employment status for use across the lifecycle, including pre-qualification, originations and account review.

The products are powered by Experian’s growing network of exclusive employer records and payroll partner data, which includes data from recent acquisitions of Corporate Cost Control (CCC), Tax Credit Co. (TCC) and EmpTech.

We are answering the industry’s call for change in income and employment verification while providing lender’s with deeper insights to increase financial access.

Putting consumers in control.

This is the latest example of many that illustrate our commitment to improve financial access for consumers. The new products complement Experian Boost – a free tool that empowers consumers to contribute their on-time telecom, utility, streaming services and mobile phone payments directly to their Experian credit report.

Incorporating this information has been proven to increase the predictiveness of a consumer’s credit reputation and can complement the data derived from their lending history.

Experian Boost provides consumers with the ability to immediately impact their credit scores, while providing lenders with deeper insight into a consumer’s financial situation.

With Experian Boost, nearly 70 percent see an uplift in their credit score. Since the product was released in 2019, more than 7 million consumers have connected to Experian Boost with over 50 million cumulative points added to FICO Scores.

The financial impact to the industry is significant, with Experian Boost users gaining access to more than $1.7 billion in credit as a result of improved credit scores.

Serving credit invisibles.

Our commitment to consumers does not end there. Through our investments in expanded data sources and advanced analytics, we are helping lenders identify consumers who are excluded from the traditional credit ecosystem, but who can fulfill their financial obligations and pay responsibly.

Experian Lift, our suite of lender credit scores, has the potential to help more than 40 million credit invisible consumers gain access to credit while providing first and second chances to millions more. Experian Lift uses proprietary technology, advanced analytics, and machine learning models to combine exclusive credit data attributes, trended data and expanded Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) regulated data sets. This combination of data and technology is creating new opportunities for consumers who are often overlooked.

Looking ahead.

Data has the power to unlock financial opportunities for millions of consumers. Collaboration between Experian, lenders and consumers that is informed by data is key to keeping the economy flowing and improving livelihoods of Americans.

As we look to the road ahead, we are committed to working side-by-side with lenders, credit scoring companies and consumers to eliminate credit invisibility and improve financial equity and access.

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