Exam council updates three census products to assist with CRA compliance

Three census products – on family income, state/county track crosswalk and a new “county to MSA” within the crosswalk – were released Thursday by the umbrella group for federal financial institution regulators.

The Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) said the three products, used by banks to help determine compliance with anti-redlining regulations under the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), were released by its census and geocoding team.

Key elements of each product include:

  • The updated FFIEC Median Family Income Report for 2024, which only includes the 2020 MSA/MD Median Family Income column. The FFIEC said some MSA/MDs were recalculated due to the 2023 OMB boundary changes that are incorporated into the 2024 FFIEC Census. The column “2024 FFIEC est. MSA/MD Median Family Income” will be updated in early summer after the Housing and Urban Development Department (HUD) releases its annual numbers.
  • The updated MSA/MD State County Tract crosswalk, which adds detailed information on the census tract income category. The FFIEC said the file may be used to compare tract income categories across years to see how they may have changed due to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) boundary changes. “Users should be particularly careful when comparing tracts in Connecticut as the FIPS codes have changed,” the agency said.
  • An addition to the crosswalk file that provides county-to-MSA (excluding Connecticut) mapping that allows users to determine if a county changed status between FFIEC Census years 2023 and 2024. A similar list is provided for Connecticut at the tract level as the eight counties in the state were replaced with nine new planning regions for 2024, FFIEC said. “Using these lists, users can determine the type of status change (e.g. a county or tract was added or removed from an MSA) and whether an MSA/MD name and/or code changed,” the agency added. It also pointed out that Connecticut also has a few tract changes for its underwater tracts: one 2023 tract was split into two new tracts for 2024 and two other tracts were redrawn for 2024 to match the new planning regions. All these underwater tracts have an income level of “Unknown,” FFIEC said.

The agency also noted that its geocode has been enhanced to allow users to geocode addresses for an additional two years, bringing the total lookback to five years.

FFIEC Median Family Income Report

FFIEC Census and Demographic Data