The Richmond Fed’s recent report, Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) by the Numbers, provides findings from the 2019 Federal Reserve CDFI Survey. CDFIs are specialized financial institutions operating in markets that are underserved by traditional financial institutions.

The 2019 CDFI Survey was a collaborative effort of the Federal Reserve, the CDFI Fund, Opportunity Finance Network, First Nations Oweesta Corporation, NeighborWorks America, and Inclusiv. The survey was conducted from April through June 2019 and gathered information from 557 CDFIs in the continental United States, Alaska, Guam, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico.

Key findings include:

  • • In 2018, approximately 12,000 staff members from respondent CDFIs provided financial products and development services to over 1 million clients and communities nationwide.
  • • Demand for CDFI products and services grew. From April 2018 through April 2019, 73 percent of respondent CDFIs experienced increased demand.
  • • The portfolio of CDFI lending is relatively concentrated in the small business sector, followed by residential and commercial real estate. CDFIs surveyed reported that 41 percent of their aggregated loan funds are invested in small businesses, followed by 28 percent in residential real estate, and 11 percent in commercial real estate.

The report also highlights the following special topics: workforce development, Opportunity Zones, modernization of the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), and the impact of the 2018–19 partial federal government shutdown. For more information about the Federal Reserve’s work with CDFIs, please visit You can also view which CDFIs responded to the survey at National CDFI Directory.