Bank Black: More Black homeownership and business ownership would be possible if Black-owned banks had more capital.
According to a Nielsen study, Black spending power is $1.3 trillion. That’s trillion with a T. Black buying power has seen an 86 percent growth since 2000. This growth is in part due to the increase in Black-owned businesses and the uptick in education among African-Americans. We own businesses, we’re educated, and our collective spending power is massive. We continue to be significant consumers and influencers in goods and services offered. Many of the companies and brands we support, however, do not treat us as if their livelihood depends on us. Spoiler Alert: They need us more than we need them.
This includes banks. Banks use money sitting in accounts to invest in businesses and community projects. Banks that do not value Black consumers are less likely to invest in Black-owned businesses and businesses that are more likely to hire Black employees. White-owned banks are notorious for denying loans to qualified Black applicants. They also played a huge role in the segregation of our country through the practice of redlining.
Black-owned banks, on the other hand, have been invested in the Black community since their inception. Black-owned banks understand the value of the Black dollar and they respect and appreciate the business they receive. Black-owned banks are known for being out in the community, spreading knowledge, and offering opportunities. More Black homeownership and business ownership would be possible if Black-owned banks had more capital.
That’s where YOU come in.
Opening an account with a Black-owned bank is an investment in Black communities that have been neglected by larger banks. I’ve compiled a list of popular Black-owned banks throughout the country. End the year with a new savings account in a Black-owned bank.
OneUnited is a leader in the Bank Black Movement. As America’s largest Black-owned bank, OneUnited is working to develop urban communities across the nation, to raise financial literacy within our communities, and to build Black economic power in America. OneUnited helps its customers determine which of their many services is right for them. They also provide loans to Black-owned businesses and businesses more likely to hire Black employees. OneUnited is a designated Community Development Financial Institute serving low and moderate income communities. Additionally, OneUnited holds workshops and events throughout the country to improve financial literacy. The folks at OneUnited proudly proclaim the Black Lives Matter and Black Money Matters.
As its name suggests, Liberty Bank is passionate about helping more people achieve more freedom. Liberty invests in the development of personal goals, business objectives, and communities. Liberty’s mission is to provide cost-effective delivery of high quality, innovative, customer driven financial products and services to diverse markets with a focus on disadvantaged minority communities who have traditionally been underserved. The folks at Liberty pride themselves on being a catalyst for economic and community development. Liberty has nine locations throughout the country.
Voted Best Bank of 2017 in Washington City Paper, Industrial Bank is known for its great services and putting on numerous events for the community regarding financial literacy and awareness. Industrial has been holding true to its mission of making a difference in people’s lives and the economic development of communities since 1934. Located in Washington, D.C., Industrial is a partner to small and large businesses, homeowners, and personal banking account customers. The Industrial team is guided by its core values of leadership, customer service, integrity, community, and relationships. Find out why they were voted 2017’s Best Bank for yourself.
Serving North Carolina for over 110 years, Mechanics & Farmers Bank (M&F) is the nation’s second oldest minority-owned bank. According to Black Enterprise, M&F is the 9th largest financial institution with nearly $256 million in total assets as of 2016. It is also the only bank in North Carolina to receive the Community Development Financial Institution designation. Unlike many banks, M&F is independent and not affiliated with another banking institution. It’s not controlled by a major institution, and all decisions are made within the organization by its leadership. This allows them to strive toward their mission of meeting the needs of their community and providing quality service.
Citizens Trust Bank opened its doors on Atlanta’s historic Sweet Auburn Ave over 95 years ago. In that time, it has built its reputation by remaining firmly rooted and accessible in the communities it serves by combining trust, loyalty, and personalized relationship banking with the delivery of high-touch service and life focused financial solutions. Citizens has locations in Georgia and Alabama. Citizens goes beyond just offering banking services; they are committed to empowering people financially.
Featured Image: John Milinovich, Creative Commons