The launch of a new “ultra” credit score said to have the potential to improve credit access for the majority of Americans was announced by Experian, FICO and Finicity at the Money 20/20 USA conference. The new score will launch as a pilot early in 2019 and should become available to lenders by midyear.

The new UltraFICO Score, according to the firms, “leverages account aggregation technology and distribution capability from Experian and Finicity to help consumers improve access to credit by tapping into consumer-contributed data, such as checking, savings and money market account data, that reflects responsible financial management activity.”

Consumers grant permission for the firms to get access to information from bank statements, including how long accounts have been open, the frequency of activity and evidence of saving. Finicity electronically reads those statements and combines the data with consumer credit information from Experian “to provide an enhanced view of positive financial behavior.”

The model was developed by FICO; it will be implemented through Experian, with borrower data aggregated through Finicity and integrated into a lender’s existing operational workflow. The new score builds off of the framework of the base FICO score, and is designed to reflect the same odds-to-score relationship so that it can be easily incorporated into lending strategies, origination and account management systems.

According to Experian, FICO and Finicity, the new score could improve credit access for the majority of Americans, particularly those who “fall in the gray area in terms of credit scores (scores in the upper 500s to lower 600s) or fall just below a lender’s score cutoff.” They also expect that those who could benefit the most are consumers with new and relatively limited credit history or those who are digging out from earlier financial woes.

“Through this project, we’ve found a new way to use consumer-permissioned data that allows lenders to make better decisions and helps consumers gain access to credit,” Alex Lintner, president, Consumer Information Services, Experian, says in a statement.