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racial wealth gap

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AFROTECH Executive: Northwestern Mutual’s Abim Kolawole Shares How Corporations Can Help Close The Wealth Gap

AFROTECH Executive is set to close out in Brooklyn, NY. On Sept. 22, the last stop of the multi-city series will focus on wealth, finance, and innovation, including a fireside chat with Northwestern Mutual’s Abim Kolawole on corporate responsibility in closing the wealth gap. Snag your tickets for AFROTECH Executive here. View this post on Instagram A post shared by AFROTECH (

Sep 20, 2023

How 41-Year-Old Lakisha Simmons Secured Her Retirement Bag Of $850K As A Single Mother

Retirement isn’t normally a high priority on young workers’ lists. But this 41-year-old single mother not only secured her bag but did so in the biggest way possible. CNBC has the story of Lakisha Simmons, who retired with almost $1 million in her retirement fund ($850,000 to be exact), having worked since she was 14-years-old. Although she comes from a working-class family, Simmons worked as an associate professor at Belmont University in Nashville, TN. Between her full-time job and her side hustles, Simmons was able to bring in $150,000 in 2020. But Simmons had set a goal for herself: retire by the time she was 45-years-old. So, she deployed what’s known as the FIRE Method — “financial independence, retire early” — which is also popularly known as an extreme saving method. Simmons sold her home (to get rid of her mortgage of $2,400/month), cut down on all her expenses (switched to a prepaid cell phone plan, made meals at home), and saved $100,000 in the first year. “Simmons keeps...

Black Women In Georgia To Receive $850 A Month Through Income Pilot Program

Black women in Georgia will receive guaranteed monthly income to improve their mental health and address the racial wealth gap. Yahoo News reports , the In Her Hands program will grant 650 Black women below the federal poverty line $850 in monthly cash with no conditions attached for two years. In Her Hands will become one of the largest guaranteed income pilot programs in the U.S distributing over $13 million in funding by early 2022. “Black women are among the most likely groups to experience cash shortfalls that make covering basic needs difficult. This isn’t the result of poor choices; it’s the result of pervasive economic insecurity that has the sharpest impacts on women and communities of color,” Hope Wollensack, executive director of the GRO Fund, said in a release, according to Yahoo News. “Guaranteed income is a step toward creating a more just and equitable economy.”

Dec 10, 2021

Out Of 724 Billionaires In America, Only Seven Are Black  — What Does It Take To Join The Club?

There’s a stereotype regarding Black billionaires and Black and wealthy individuals where many believe fortunes mostly come from being musicians, actors or athletes. This sends a message that we cannot obtain wealth outside of these industries, but that’s far from the truth. In fact, there are many Black millionaires in the United States that have found success outside of music, sports and entertainment. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the amount of Black billionaires that are too scarce compared to white billionaires who dominate in industries like the tech space. According to Forbes’ 2021 World’s Billionaires List, there are 724 billionaires in America yet only seven of them are Black. That’s just enough to seat at one dining room table since Black billionaires only make up less than one percent of the nation’s billionaire population. This low number comes as no surprise, but it’s an alarming figure that highlights the widening racial wealth gap in this country. Yet...

Sep 20, 2021

NBA's Steph Curry Sets Out To Close The Racial Wealth Gap With Nonprofit NinetyToZero

Steph Curry has plans to help close the racial wealth gap. The NBA superstar will join forces with the nonprofit NinetyToZero in an effort to close the wealth gap that is currently plaguing America. According to NinetyToZero, closing the racial wealth gap could increase the economic growth of the U.S. by $1.5 trillion over the next decade. They also report that Duke University research revealed that the wealth gap between Black and white Americans is between $11 trillion and $13.5 trillion. “Uncovering solutions and creating opportunities is something I’m profoundly committed to,” said Curry in an official press release. “Bridging the racial wealth gap is one of the biggest challenges of our generation. We are setting a concrete approach that every organization can take to initiate meaningful progress now.” Curry will also be joined by American Express, cannabis company, Green Thumb, the NFL’s Washington Football Team, and the United Way of New York City. Other partners include the...

Jul 28, 2021

The Highland Project To Distribute $100K Grants To Narrow Wealth Gap For Black Women Leaders

The past year plus in America has been a glaring reminder of the unfair and unequal conditions that exist in this country, especially for Black Americans. In an effort to change that reality, The Highland Project founder Gabrielle Wyatt wants to create the change she hopes to see for women that look like her. Wyatt shares that The Highland Project — a non-profit organization created to help Black leaders support one another and build power — was founded with a mission to cultivate a coalition of Black women who are leading in various institutions and systems to help generate multi-generational wealth. “As Black women, we are tired of performative activism when real and meaningful policies and practices are needed to close the racial wealth gap,” she said in a press release shared with ESSENCE. “Black women do so much for this country, but our contributions are rarely appreciated and certainly don’t always benefit us.” According to her, her non-profit will reverse this truth...

Jul 6, 2021

Morgan Stanley's Jesse Walton Sees The 'Bigger Picture' To Closing The Racial Wealth Gap

On average, Black workers are already earning $12,000 less than the median wage in the U.S. , and there are so many other barriers in their way in regards to diversity, opportunity and stability in the workplace. Jesse Walton, SVP of the Walton Group and a certified private wealth advisor at Morgan Stanley, has been fighting institutional inequities for over two decades. Walton is extremely passionate about helping  position his clients to create generational wealth and those building blocks start with financial literacy, long-term investing and saving, he says. “The biggest opportunity this country gives you is freedom and the fact that you can participate in the corporate structure,” Walton told AfroTech. “You can grow your wealth if you save and participate in the growth of this economy and you do that through stock ownership.” Here’s more of Walton’s thoughts on the racial wealth gap , how the Black community can close it, and more. Editorial Note: This piece has been edited for...

Jul 5, 2021

Study Finds Black American Workers On Average Earn $12K Less Than The Median Wage In The U.S.

This new report is calling on change makers to step up to the plate after highlighting gaps in representation, participation and pay for Black workers in America. McKinsey & Company published some eye opening findings in its recent “The Economic state of B lack America: What is and what could be” report. The new study explores the racial gaps and disparities across the nation’s economy. The Economic state of Black America studies five specific economic roles: workers, business owners, savers/investors, consumers, and residents. With this new report, McKinsey wants to provide a comprehensive review of how Black Americans participate and thrive in the economy. The management consulting firm also wants to put a spotlight on the challenges Black Americans face and help imagine what a new future looks like following the coronavirus pandemic. “The way forward is a mix of truth and reconciliation, and it’s really important to tell the full truth,” John Paul Julien, an associate partner at...

Jun 17, 2021

MassMutual Great Lakes, First Independence Bank Announce Partnership To Close Racial Wealth Gap

MassMutual is linking up with Michigan’s only Black-owned bank to work toward closing the racial wealth gap! According to the news release , First Independence Bank (FIB) is the only Black-owned bank in Michigan and through the new strategic alliance with MassMutual Great Lakes (MMGL), they’ve committed to helping the underserved reshape how they view money. “At MassMutual Great Lakes, we believe every individual, small business owner, and corporation deserves the right to financial services and strategies designed to create stability,” said MassMutual Great Lakes Manuel Amezcua in an official news release. “Our commitment is to develop meaningful relationships that reshape the financial well-being and success of a diverse group of individuals and institutions in the communities we serve.” Since its launch in 1970, FIB has served the dreams and financial needs of Black Americans and is one of only 155 minority depository institutions, according to Black Enterprise, in the nation and...

May 18, 2021

While Millennials Only Account For 5 Percent of U.S. Wealth, Gen Xers Are Doing Better Than Ever

Generation Xers are emerging from the pandemic more wealthy and economically stable compared to other generations, specifically millennials. Reuters first reported this along with data collected by the U.S. Federal Reserve showing that members of Generation X saw their wealth jump more during Donald Trump’s presidential term and through the coronavirus pandemic. Generation Xers can be defined as those currently between the ages of 40 and 55; they come after the Baby Boomer generation, and right before Generation Y, also known as Millennials . Generation X hit a major turning point last year when its share of wealth, at 26.9 percent, passed its share of households which is 26.8 percent. But what does this mean? This means that Generation X’s wealth has surpassed the amount of households they account for in our population. Reuters coined Generation X as the ascendant generation because of this. When Trump took over as president in 2017, Generation Xers accounted for 34.6 million...

May 7, 2021

New York Life Launches $1B Impact Investment Fund Aimed At Closing The Racial Wealth Gap

New York Life — known as America’s largest and most admired mutual life insurer — has made a huge stride toward closing the racial wealth gap. In a press release provided exclusively to AfroTech, New York Life has announced a $1 billion impact investment initiative aimed at addressing the looming issue that comes along with the racial wealth gap. The initiative includes investing in both underserved and undercapitalized communities over the course of the next three years with a primary focus on affordable housing, community development, and supporting small businesses. “We are focused on investments that promise to not only deliver meaningful societal impacts but also those with the potential to generate market returns for New York Life’s policy owners,”  said Tony Malloy, Executive Vice President & Chief Investment Officer, in an exclusive interview with AfroTech. “Generating positive market returns is key to driving sustainable and positive economic outcomes in underserved and...

Apr 27, 2021

Car Sharing Marketplace Turo Commits $1M in Funding Toward Addressing America's Racial Wealth Gap

Car sharing marketplace Turo has forged a partnership with Kiva — a nonprofit that expands financial access to underserved communities — to launch its Turo Seed Initiative and help address America’s wealth gap. According to a news release , the initiative was designed to specifically address wealth inequality in the U.S. as it pertains to traditionally underserved Black communities. Turo has committed $1 million to this initiative, which will offer people — regardless of gender, race, or class — access to interest-free car loans in an effort to provide more wealth-building opportunities. “Our commitment of up to $1 million in funding to address the growing wealth inequality in the United States is not only the right thing to do, but a necessity,” said Turo CEO, Andre Haddad, in a statement . “Traditionally, minority communities have more difficulty procuring fair loans, receiving access to credit, and have been disproportionately impacted by the effects of COVID-19. Kiva and Turo...

Nov 18, 2020

JPMorgan Chase Reveals $30B Plan To Serve Black and Latinx Communities

JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced this week a $30 billion plan to advance racial equity and help remedy the country’s racial wealth gap over the next five years, as it relates mainly to underserved Black and Latinx communities, CNBC reports . According to CNBC , the bank’s pledge includes a combination of loans, investments, and philanthropy efforts that is expected to stretch beyond its normal course of business. The banking institution shared that barriers within the U.S.’ financial structures has generated profound racial inequalities that have been especially apparent amid the COVID-19 pandemic. JPMorgan Chase’s new commitment arrives to help drive more inclusive measures for the economy’s recovery efforts and eliminate systemic racism. “Systemic racism is a tragic part of America’s history,” said Jamie Dimon — Chairman and CEO, MDIs JPMorgan Chase & Co. — in a press statement . “We can do more and do better to break down systems that have propagated racism and widespread economic...

Oct 9, 2020

Mastercard Commits $500M to Close Racial Wealth Gap For Black Americans and Entrepreneurs

Global finance giant Mastercard is furthering its long-standing inclusion efforts to Black Americans across the country with another financial commitment. Last week, the company announced a $500 million investment in Black communities over the next five years that includes products, services, technology and financial support, as well as an increase in concentrated investments that will provide Black-owned businesses and consumers access to affordable finance tools and capital, a press release reports . “This is a time for action. We have an obligation as a corporate citizen to ensure the digital economy is enabled for all, an obligation to be part of the positive change Black communities so rightly need now,” said Ajay Banga, Chief Executive Officer at Mastercard, in a statement . “We are starting in cities across the country with on-the-ground efforts meant to drive out inequities and create the opportunities, connections and resources that will spark economic growth for the long...

Sep 23, 2020