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NEWS FLASH: Lenders are becoming less stingy, maybe

Jim Henry is a special correspondent for Automotive News
Here's some good news, sort of:

While still WAY stingier than we'd like, lenders have at least stopped squeezing those purse stings.

At least, that's my take on a recent Federal Reserve announcement that loan-to-value ratios have on average stopped falling.

Loan-to-value measures how much a lender is willing to lend vs. the value of the vehicle. A higher ratio makes it easier for dealerships to bundle F&I products into the finance contract.

Dealers are hoping for an upward trend. And maybe that's starting to happen.

Josh Aaronson, owner of Yonkers Auto Mall in Yonkers, N.Y., swears loan-to-value ratios are starting to improve.

“Some (lenders) are upping them -- some,” Aaronson swears. “We are starting to be able to get some more business on the back end, and that's important.”

Some good news is better than none at all.

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