WASHINGTON — Due to the recent relatively high credit risks spotted in SBA's Community Express loan program, which is designed for small businesses in disadvantaged communities, the agency has referred the matter to its Office of Inspector General for an audit.

"As we review the program's pilot status and make decisions about its future, we want to ensure that the program minimizes fraud, waste and abuse," SBA said today in a statement.

The Community Express pilot program assists small businesses owned by women, veterans and minorities that are located in underserved areas. Of the 337 Community Express lenders, 12 are credit unions, according to SBA.

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