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Showing posts from March, 2024

Black vs White Labor Force Participation, 1972 to 2024

  "The labor force participation rate is the percentage of the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years and older that is working or actively looking for work. It is an important labor market measure because it represents the relative amount of labor resources available for the production of goods and services." Source: US Department of Labor.

Banking on AI: How financial institutions are deploying new tech. American Banker Newspaper. By Frank Gargano March 19, 2024 11:23 AM

Despite both consumer and institutional interest in artificial intelligence continuing to grow across the financial services industry, the majority of leaders are still unsure about the technology and its potential uses — leaving a select group of executives to lead their organizations into the fray.  Arizent, the publisher of American Banker, surveyed 127 financial institution professionals to find out how traditional and generative AI is unfolding in the industry with respect to applications, risks versus rewards, impact on the workforce and more. Respondents represent banks ranging from less than $10 billion of assets to more than $100 billion of assets, as well as credit unions of all asset sizes. The results showed that familiarity is the largest hurdle for adoption. Tech-minded changemakers helping prepare their organizations for AI said the top two things they are doing are researching providers and attending industry conferences or events on AI. They are also creating worki

MBDA Decision From A Young Person's Perspective, Anish Thota, Impact Investing Intern. Charlotte Latin School

A federal judge in Texas has ruled that the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) can no longer provide exclusive assistance to businesses owned by people of color, following a lawsuit alleging unconstitutional policies. The MBDA, originally established to promote growth in minority-owned businesses, must now provide support to all businesses regardless of race. The judge emphasized the need for concrete evidence of past discrimination to justify race-based assistance programs, indicating a shift away from policies that prioritize minority businesses without sufficient evidence of discrimination. This ruling reflects broader debates around affirmative action and equity measures, suggesting a trend of legal challenges to programs aimed at addressing inequity. Opinion from a young person’s perspective As a young person, witnessing this decision regarding the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) prompts a deep reflection on the complexities of addressing systemic inequalities

Unemployment by Race, Ethnicity for February 2024

Unemployment data indicates persistent disparities in unemployment rates among the racial/ethnic groups studied. Over the period from January 2023 to February 2024, the Black population consistently experienced higher unemployment rates compared to other groups. In contrast, the Asian population, aside from a spike in November 2023, generally had the lowest unemployment rates. Differences Between Groups: - Black unemployment rates were 1.3% to 2.9% higher than those of the White group throughout the period. This suggests a significant and persistent gap that does not close over the months observed. Even when the Black unemployment rate decreased from its peak in November 2023, it was still higher than the rates for other groups. Black small business ownership has been on the rise in recent years, but it is important to note that Black-owned businesses have had less access to capital, higher loan denial rates , and less favorable loan conditions compared to businesses owned by other rac

International Women's Day! #breakthebias

  International Women's Day!  #breakthebias

VC FUNDING OF BLACK STARTUPS DROPS. Jeff McKinney, Black Enterprise Magazine.

New data show that venture funding for Black-founded startups remains dreary. For the first time since 2016, backing for those companies in 2023 fell below $1 billion to $705 million, according to a new report from tech research firm Crunchbase. The eye-popping 71% decline for Black startups was much larger than the 37% drop in combined venture capital (VC) dollars invested in 2023 as the market retreated. The latest numbers also reflect Black founders last year getting over $300 million less in those dollars than seven years before that. During the peak funding year of 2021, Crunchbase shared that $4.9 billion was invested in Black founders. The 2023 figure represents an 86% drop from 2021 for those entrepreneurs. The drop in VC funding to Black start-ups is significant as those firms need the capital to launch businesses, expand, and gain working capital to help them survive. Further, Black-owned women’s small businesses continue to struggle to land VC funding even though they’re amo

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