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CHEMICAL BANK AND MANUFACTURERS HANOVER TRUST REACH AGREEMENT WITH ACORN

CHEMICAL BANK AND MANUFACTURERS HANOVER TRUST REACH AGREEMENT WITH ACORN
 NEW YORK, Nov. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Manufacturers Hanover Trust, Chemical Bank and its subsidiary, Texas Commerce Bank, today announced an agreement with ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) to enhance the new Chemical Bank's banking services that are targeted at low and moderate income consumers.
 The agreement covers many of the details of implementing the recently announced five point Affirmative Mortgage Program, which was designed to increase mortgage lending to low and moderate income consumers and communities. A key element of the merged bank's program is the development of home mortgages that have more flexible lending criteria than standard mortgages that are usually sold into the secondary market. In New York State, the new Chemical Bank has created a $10 million pool to hold these mortgages on its books.
 Under the agreement, the new Chemical Bank will:
 -- apply new, more flexible standards for those lower-income applicants who participate in a bank-approved credit counseling program, including recognition of all forms of income, including government assistance, using higher debt to income ratios than standard mortgages, reducing up-front fees and points and lending up to 95 percent of the value of the property.
 -- support credit counseling provided by community agencies throughout its market and will utilize ACORN as a provider of this service in areas of Brooklyn and Queens.
 -- work with community organizations, including ACORN, tenants and government agencies to rehabilitate and/or restructure residential properties that the bank has foreclosed on. This will be part of the new Chemical's distressed property program and will be implemented in New York, Texas and New Jersey.
 -- expand the bank's ongoing relationship with the Mutual Housing Association of New York (MHANY) and will assist MHANY with predevelopment and construction financing and assist current and future MHANY home buyers with renovations and mortgages.
 Carol Parry, managing director of Manufacturers Hanover, who will be in charge of the Community Development Group at the new Chemical Bank, stated, "Our work with ACORN over the past few months has resulted in a program that will go a long way in assisting the bank in increasing home mortgage lending in low and moderate income communities. We look forward to a fruitful, on-going working relationship with ACORN on these very important issues."
 Gwen Jacobs, ACORN board member, stated, "Low and moderate income families that have traditionally had a more difficult time becoming homeowners will now have that option due to the significant changes announced today. We applaud Chemical Bank and Manufacturers Hanover Trust for taking the lead in the New York banking community."
 This agreement follows the October announcement of Chemical Bank's and Manufacturers Hanover's comprehensive program which includes a five year commitment of $750 million for loans for housing, small business and not-for-profit organizations in low and moderate income communities in New York, Texas and New Jersey -- the new Chemical Bank's primary markets.
 Chemical Banking Corporation (NYSE: CHL) and Manufacturers Hanover Corporation (NYSE: MHC) will combine in a merger of equals, pending state and federal regulatory approval, at year-end 1991.
 -0- 11/21/91
 /CONTACT: Ken Herz of Chemical Banking, 212-310-7436; Jon Kest of ACORN, 718-693-6700; or Judy Walsh of Manufacturers Hanover Trust, 212-270-2918/
 (CHL MHC) CO: Manufacturers Hanover Trust; Chemical Bank ST: New York IN: FIN SU: FC-SH -- NY034 -- 5853 11/21/91 11:37 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 21, 1991
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