Individual Wealth Preservation

Are Banks' Entry-Level Checking Accounts Safe and Affordable?

Mathieu Despard, Rachel Eastlund, Nik Schuetz and Terri Friedline
University of Kansas, Center on Assets, Education, & Inclusion (AEDI)

Workplace Financial Wellness Services

Joanna Ain, Pamela Chan, Meredith Covington, Geraldine Hannon and Santiago Sueiro

Protecting Communities on the Road to Recovery

Sarah Edelman, Michela Zonta and Shiv Rawal
Center for American Progress

A Tale of Two Retirements

Sarah Anderson and Scott Klinger
Institute for Policy Studies

Toward a Dignified Retirement for All

Jackie Odum, Eliza Schultz, Rebecca Vallas and Christian Weller
Center for American Progress

Forced to Walk a Dangerous Line: The Causes & Consequences of Debt in Black Communities

Pamela Chan, Devin Fergus and Lillian Singh

While the proportion of Black and white households with debt are similar, more Black households experience “troublesome debt,” or difficulties with debt and bill payments. This new white paper from Prosperity Now discusses this connection between the racial wealth gap and debt, highlighting how disproportionate access to wealth building opportunities such as homeownership and credit perpetuates this disparity. The paper calls for federal reforms that would create greater income and wealth building opportunities for communities of color. 

The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Rental Homes

Andrew Aurand, Dan Emmanuel, Diane Yentel, Ellen Errico and Marjorie Pang

Public Health & Wealth in Post-Bankruptcy Detroit

Suparana Bhaskaran
UC Berkeley

Published by the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society at UC Berkeley, this new report discusses the relationship between health outcomes and wealth disparities in Detroit, Michigan. The authors detail how a lack of access to safe housing and water poses the greatest health threats to residents, and call for solutions outside the realm of clinical care. While noting the necessity of Medicaid expansion, the report calls for investments in the social determinants of health—including affordable housing and expanded social services.

Affordable Housing Resources

Affordable Housing Resources focuses on helping Middle Tennessee’s low and moderate income families achieve homeownership.  To do so, the nonprofit: develops affordable housing; provides individual counseling and group classes focused on homebuying, foreclosure prevention and financial planning; and offers low-interest mortgage loans and down payment and closing cost assistance.  Since its incorporation in 1989, it has developed 1,300 new homes and helped more than 14,000 families and individuals buy homes.

CRA Performance Context: Why it is Important for Community Development and How to Improve it

Josh Silver

This white paper explains performance context analysis and explains why it is important from a community perspective. It first discusses the definition of performance context referencing CRA regulatory documents. Second, it reviews current thinking regarding the implementation of performance context analysis. While the thinking has evolved, the federal agency implementation is still centered too much on the banks and not enough on the community perspective. Third, the paper will review examples of both poor and good performance context analysis in CRA exams. Fourth, the paper will offer some examples of data analysis and community group input that provides a foundation for improved performance context analysis. 

Financial Coaching: Review of Existing Research

Center for Financial Security
University of Wisconsin-Madison

This brief summarizes research into the theories underlying financial coaching and the effects of financial coaching on participant behaviors and outcomes. In practice, financial coaching remains an unregulated field, and individuals and organizations use the term “financial coaching” to refer to an array of interventions. This brief concentrates on coaching interventions that explicitly focus on working with clients to identify behavioral outcomes, set goals, brainstorm strategies, set concrete action plans, identify strengths and build motivation, and provide monitoring and accountability, all of which are features of a more theoretically-grounded coaching approach (Grant, Cavanagh, and Parker 2010). This brief includes literature gathered through searches encompassing briefs, reports, book chapters, academic articles, and other sources. 

2014 Data Indicate That Four in Ten Children Live in Low-Income Families

Jessica A. Carson, Andrew Schaefer and Marybeth J. Mattingly
University of New Hampshire

In September 2015, the Census Bureau released 2014 poverty data from the American Community Survey (ACS), the only regular source for reliably estimating child poverty in geographic areas below the state level using the official poverty measure. In this brief, we use ACS data to explore child poverty rates across the United States by region, state, and place type (rural, suburban, and city). We also examine data on children who are deeply poor (those in families with incomes below half of the poverty line), as well as low-income children (those in families with incomes less than twice the poverty line). We find that while child poverty declined nationwide between 2013 and 2014, that drop was not felt uniformly across the country: several states saw declines, a few states saw increases, and others saw no change at all. We also found substantial differences in the magnitude of change across rural places, suburbs, and cities.