CREDIT: Women Battle Bias

Christine Carroll, 32, of Floral Park, N.Y., would appear to be a solid financial asset to any marriage. Steadily employed as a bookkeeper for the past decade, she regularly contributes $4,000 a year to the Carrolls' combined income of $16,500. Yet for three years she and her husband Richard were turned down for a mortgage loan by one lending institution after another. His income alone was not sufficient, the couple was invariably told, and her income could not be counted because she was "of childbearing age." When one loan officer asked Christine...

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