Posted by | February 10, 2011 19:32 | Filed under: Top Stories

By Cate Regan

JPMorgan Chase makes a killing from processing food stamp benefits, reports Alternet. As the largest processor of food stamp benefits in the US, JPMorgan is “contracted to provide food stamp debit cards in 26 U.S. states and the District of Columbia.”

The firm is paid per customer. This means that when the number of food stamp recipients goes up, so do JPMorgan profits… JPMorgan is taking its responsibility to keep the U.S. unemployment rate high by offshoring the servicing of many of these contracts to India, according to ABC News.

There are 43 million American families living on food stamps right now. And if that number goes down, if the unemployment rate drops, JPMorgan won’t make the money it makes now.

In addition to benefiting from the rampant US unemployment, the bank also has a sour relationship with veterans and service members in general, having “illegally overcharged 4,000 active service members for their mortgages” and foreclosed improperly on them. Since 2008, foreclosure filings around military bases increased to 32 percent. And the homes of over 20,000 veterans and service members were foreclosed in 2010.

Diane Thompson from the National Consumer Law Center points out that big banks and mortgage service firms have perverse financial incentives that spur them to foreclose. “The servicer’s expenses, other than the financing costs associated with advances, will be paid first out of the proceeds of a foreclosure. . . Whether and when costs are recovered in a modification is more uncertain.”

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Copyright 2011 Liberaland
By: Cate