Why financial literacy should be part of the vacation

Brock Harrell of Galveston rings a bell during a reenactment to celebrate Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery in Texas, two years after the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation freed slaves elsewhere in the United States , in Galveston, Texas on June 19, 2021.

Callaghan O’Hare | Reuters

The finance-focused podcast Earn Your Leisure aims to normalize open discussions about money, wealth creation and financial freedom on Juneteenth, the holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in America.

“A lot of times we focus on the social impact of slavery and then on racism and discrimination of that nature. Equally important is the economic impact,” said Rashad Bilal of Earn Your Leisure at CNBC. “When you come to understand that slavery was really a financial system that was put in place for free labor. So when you see our ancestors sacrificing their lives and it was done for economic empowerment, it compels you watching your finances,” Bilal said.

Earn Your Leisure has over a million followers and is part of a growing movement of finance-focused social influencers including Kezia Williams, Ian Dunlap aka the Master Investor, Wall Street Trapper, Ross MacPhilip Michel, WorthLifeBalanceand many more.

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Each has a different style and focus, but all agree the data on black wealth is concerning.

According to Dr. William Darity of Duke University, the racial wealth gap – the disparity in assets between black and white Americans – exceeds $11 trillion.

The median wealth of a white family was $188,200 in 2019, compared to $24,100 for black families and $36,100 for Hispanic families, according to the 2019 Federal Reserve Survey of Consumer Financespublished in September 2020. A forecast for the median black family sees it drop to $0 if current trends continue.

“You don’t want to just waste your money. You can actually use that money to change the trajectory of your family. Financial education is something you can use to change the trajectory of your family. Our ancestors didn’t have given this opportunity, they were forced to work for free,” Bilal said.

social media influencer Ian Dunlap said this Juneteenth, there is an urgent need for the black community to understand long-term investing in stocks and the opportunity it can create for wealth. “Investing is not difficult,” he told CNBC. “The data is there, the information is there. My research shows that if you hold the S&P 500 index fund or equivalent for 30 years, you have a 0% chance of losing your investment and a 100% chance of being profitable.”

Kezia Williams focuses on black entrepreneurship and how it can help build generational wealth, but she emphasized that it takes collaboration and intentional economic decisions to create sustainable black businesses. For the third year, she is encouraging people to shop at black businesses and post their receipts online with the MyBlackReceipt hashtag.

Kezia Williams

Kezia Williams | Black upStart

“We have to intentionally buy from a black business! It should be a practice we do every day,” Williams told CNBC. “The pandemic has created opportunities to reach people in spaces outside of traditional media. There are a lot of female financial influencers teaching, creating wonderful content and it would be great for them to find or build spaces to do hear their voice,” she said. said.

Philip Michael is working to create 100,000 black millionaires through real estate investment by 2030. “Homeownership is the gateway to wealth,” he told CNBC. The black community needs to look at emerging investment vehicles like its NYCE app that lets investors buy a “fractional share” of a property. “I want to improve the psychology of money specifically for black people. It’s just about breaking down some of these perceived barriers that we have mentally about how we can start investing. It’s not just for rich people. , it’s a necessity,” Michael said. .

The housing market is currently under pressure, with mortgage rates posting their biggest weekly rise since 1987, and stocks have recently tested investors with the S&P 500 slipping in a bear market and more aggressive assets like tech investments and crypto. -currencies suffering big losses.

Nonetheless, some of the wealthiest investors in the market say bear markets are unique investment opportunities, and these influencers advocate exposure to riskier assets as part of an investment portfolio. In addition to blue-chip tech stocks, Dunlap advises exploring opportunities in Web3 and the Metaverse. Williams advocates for women to enter the cryptocurrency space and become influencers to address the unique challenges female investors face.

For Earn Your Leisure, social media conversation, psychology and likes are great. But they can’t wait to see the actions, decisions and goals of the next generation of investors they’ve helped inspire.

“We wanted to make learning about finance and generational wealth a cool thing, we wanted to make it a mundane conversation. I didn’t grow up with conversations like that at the dinner table. But imagine if we did?” Earn Your Leisure’s Troy Millings told CNBC. “Imagine if at the barbershop we weren’t discussing the best basketball player, but the best companies, what that could do to a neighborhood.”

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Disclosure: NBCUniversal and Comcast Ventures are investors in tassels.

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