Luke LaHaie is on no one’s list of Wall Street heavy-hitters. But from the comfort of his Chicago condo, he’s just become the biggest player in a hot new thing in American finance: pandemic relief loans.
His little-known firm, The Loan Source, has scooped up $3.3 billion of small-business loans issued under the federal Paycheck Protection Program. LaHaie, 35, is racing to buy even more.
The Loan Source is part of a largely hidden ecosystem that’s sprung up around the PPP program, which was designed to keep small businesses afloat. It’s capitalizing on free money from the Federal Reserve to buy PPP loans from the banks that actually lent out the money, with the goal of eking out a small profit in the unglamorous business of servicing the debt.
LaHaie is one of the new breed of pandemic pros who are trying to make a little money off the PPP