I agree to the above explanations but my doubt is "Shouldn't the preposition "of" be followed by a noun?"
Does "not paying back" plays the role of a noun?
Experts please let me know if I am missing something here.
The answer to your question is yes. The phrase “not paying their loans on time” is playing the role of a noun. Let’s take a few simple sentences to understand the structure of this official sentence.
1. Akbar is known for giving equal importance to all religions.
2. Birbal has the record of solving all the riddles presented to him.
3. Birbal has the record of not leaving any riddle unsolved.
In all the above three sentences, the entities after the preposition is a noun phrase. Note that “giving”, “solving”, and “solving” are gerunds – the words that suggest action but act as nouns. Adding “not” does not change their roles. The presented official sentence follows the same structure:
The loan company announced it would soon lend money to borrowers with proven records of not paying back their loans on time, a group collectively known as the subprime lending market.
Here “not paying back their loans on time” is acting as a noun.
Hope this helps.
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