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Cory Doctorow:

California’s Inland Empire was hit hard by the 2008 crisis, with disproportionate foreclosures on poor and working-class families, leaving neighborhoods blighted by empty, vandalized homes.

But then a funny thing happened: the rents in these blighted neighborhoods started going up and up and up, so that now 63% of tenants are paying 30% or more of their income in rent (33% of tenants are paying 50% or more).

The soaring rents are the results of a cornered market: the houses in San Bernardino were snapped up by Invitation Homes, a division of the Blackstone Group, the world’s largest hedge fund. Blackstone is at the center of a national epidemic of high rents, and is financializing tenants by creating bonds based on their rent payments.

Makers and Takers: How Wall Street Destroyed Main Street

Paul Ciano

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