February 17, 2017. (ONN) Republicans argue that Democratic Party policies, especially those of the Barack Obama administration, have devastated the black community in America. But one rarely mentioned example is the devastating effect the Obama administration had on black-owned banks in the US. From 2008-2016, they failed at a greater rate than at any other time in modern history, and in greater proportion than the rest of the banking industry.
But you’ll never hear that on your TV set or even from other black-owned businesses. Take an article published last month by WatchTheYard.com, which bills itself as ‘a total revolution of the black college experience.’ Their site was at the top of the results of a Google search for the number of black-owned banks in the US by year. The only problem is that their numbers are completely false.
By the numbers
The website claims there are 38 black-owned banks in America today. But a story two weeks ago in the Chicago Sun Times puts that number at a mere 24. NerdWallet.com claims there are only 23. And industry experts warn that number will fall to just 4 by 2028. Consider that in 1986, during the heart of a 12-year Republican reign, there were 44 black-owned banks in America. By 2007, the year Barack Obama was elected President, the number had dropped slightly to 41.
By the end of Barack Obama’s 8-year Presidency, the number of black-owned banks shrunk to just 23. That’s a 44 percent plunge. Some may wish to blame it on the great recession. But during the same time period, US banks overall fell from 7,100 to 5,100 - a drop of just 28 percent.
Anyone who follows financial news knows what America’s small bankers think of Barack Obama. For eight years, they complained that only the largest dozen or so banks received the trillion-dollar government bailout while the other 99.9 percent of the country’s banks were left to fend for themselves, causing nearly a third of them to go bankrupt.
Another example was the Obama administration’s policies of ‘too big to fail’ and ‘too big to jail’. While thousands of small town banks went bankrupt and countless small town bankers were jailed for corruption or incompetence over those eight years, not a single Wall Street bank was allowed to fail and not a single banker from the nation’s largest banks went to prison.
Biggest crime in history
Consider another example that is blacked-out by the American news industry - the greatest crime in history. In 2013, the Obama Justice Department settled with a handful of the country’s largest banks including Wells Fargo, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase and Citigroup. The banks had wrongly foreclosed on and taken possession of the homes of over 4 million American families. The homeowners owed no money and had no mortgages or ties to the banks that stole their homes with the help of local Sheriff’s Departments across the country.
First, the Obama administration capped the number of victims its Justice Department would represent at 4 million, meaning an unknown number of Americans were out of luck all together. The 4 million proven victims didn’t fare much better however. The Justice Dept forced the banks to pay back an average of $500 per family. That’s it.
Four million American families lost their homes for no reason other than theft and instead of forcing the banks to give back the houses or reimburse the victims for the full amount stolen, the Obama Justice Dept ordered the banks to pay back just $3.6 billion to the victims. The banks were allowed to keep the homes and an estimated $200 billion in stolen property.
Small town banks, and black-owned banks specifically, were not so lucky under the Obama administration. Unlike the giant Wall Street banks, they didn’t receive a penny of the trillion-dollar bank bailout and they weren’t given a license to steal. They simply don’t have the same mutually beneficial relationship with the leaders of both major political parties that the Wall Street titans have. The lesson of the Obama years - the smaller your bank or business, the less the establishment cares about you.
As a closing thought, consider these two facts: not a single black-owned US bank has $1 billion in assets and it would take 45,000 black-owned banks to equal the size of Wells Fargo.