- Created on 16 April 2013
According to a recent survey by Wells Fargo, African-American investors report high levels of confidence in their financial future. African Americans are also optimistic about the political and economic future of the country.
Three in five Black investors express confidence in their own financial future while half report they are better off now than they were three years ago.
"The optimism and confidence articulated by African-American investors is encouraging, particularly as those surveyed are feeling financially better off than they were three years ago,” said Jeff Cosby, Financial Advisor and Vice-President, Investment Officer in the Bloomington, Minn., office of Wells Fargo Advisors. "Where we see the biggest opportunity is helping people really consider how they are approaching saving and planning for retirement. It is important for financial advisors to help investors think through long-term strategies for investment planning, while also providing guidance on common concerns like how to balance paying off debt while continuing to save for retirement."
Black investors have made progress in retirement planning and preparation but many still have concerns as far as having enough money to actually retire. African Americans have begun taking the necessary steps to help them better prepare for retirement such as cutting back on their spending to put away money for retirement. Forty-five percent of those surveyed say they have cut back on spending which is a step up compared to 36 percent of the national population. Forty percent of non-retired African Americans say they have a retirement savings plan in place which is roughly the same as the national population.
Among non-retired African Americans, having a retirement savings plan is most common among those earning over $100,000 annually. Only 35 percent of those earning less than $100,000 have a plan.
Compared to the national population, African-American investors are less likely to consider themselves financially comfortable. Thirty-six percent of African American investors consider paying their monthly bills their biggest financial concern. Saving for retirement ranked second at 22 percent, followed by healthcare costs at 15 percent.
According to the survey, three in five Blacks in the U.S. focus on reducing debt as opposed to saving for retirement. Fifty-two percent of those surveyed are worried they won’t have enough saved for retirement, particularly those under the age of 50.
Thirty-six percent of Black investors are confident in knowing where to invest in today's market, similar to the national population, 31 percent.
"All investors -- regardless of age or level of savings -- should be focused on planning for retirement, and turning plans into actual saving and investing," said Cosby. "Many African American investors, much like the general population of overall investors, find investing in today's economy daunting. It's important to seek advice from a trusted professional to help navigate the ups and downs of the market, with an eye on long-term financial goals. It can be scary, but with all the resources and tools available, it can be done."
Living in multi-generational households also has a significant impact on African American investors' savings. Many of the survey’s respondents were faced with caring for their own children while providing for aging parents and grandparents.
Twenty percent of African American investors surveyed report living in three-generational households. Seventy-seven percent of those respondents are concerned they will not save enough to support themselves in retirement. Only 46 percent of those outside of multi-generational households had this concern.
Seventy-three percent of African American investors are optimistic about the political direction of the country, which is significantly higher compared to the general population, 43 percent. Eighty-three percent of African American investors feel the U.S. economy will improve in the next two years. Forty-seven percent of the general population agrees. Seventy-two percent of those surveyed expect their local economy to improve in the next two years.
Wells Fargo currently offers a resource called My Financial Guide, which is an online resource consisting of articles, videos and tools aimed at helping consumers become more confident and knowledgeable in money management.
These survey results are based on an online survey conducted November 9 - December 3, 2012 among adults nationwide (N=1,105) and African American adults (N=500). Respondents were non-students, ages 25-75, who are the primary or joint financial decision-maker in the household with household investable assets of at least $10,000. The survey results were weighted to reflect Census data for gender, age, race/ethnicity, region and household income to ensure representativeness. Assuming no sample bias, the maximum margin of error for the National sample is 2.9 percent and 4.4 percent for African American adults.
- Created on 15 April 2013
The Jackie Robinson biopic, "42," “overperformed,” according to Deadline.com, doing much better than expected and was the top grossing movie over the weekend with $27.3 million.
The impressive debut is a record for a baseball movie, topping the $19.5M debut of 2011′s Moneyball.
The film, which cost $38 million to produce, out-swung even the most ambitious expectations in the low-$20 millions, easily winning the weekend that included “Scary Movie 5,” which landed in the second position at $15.2 million, Variety reported.
Multiple scenes for the movie were shot throughout Georgia.
Exit polling showed the audience composition was males 48 percent females 52 percent; under age 25 was 17 percent, age 25 and up 83 percent, and the main reason for attending the movie was subject matter 84 percent. A Warner Bros exec told Deadline: “While we do not poll race breakdown, I can tell you we performed extremely well in all the large urban markets. But the highest grossing theaters were the country’s most commercial screens.”
Today is MLB’s Jackie Robinson Day where every player wears Robinson’s 42 and Deadline predicts that grosses for today could “stay level” because of the attention.
Thomas Tull, the movie’s producer, told Deadline that he relied on Robinson’s widow Rachel Robinson to help with the movie. “Her voice helped us with authenticity. That was the person who lived it,” Tull said. “And that was a really important story for us to tell.”
- Created on 12 April 2013
START ATL, an interactive symposium that teaches urban entrepreneurs how to start and grow digital businesses, will hold its inaugural conference at the Spelman College Science Center NASA Auditorium on Saturday, April 13, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Attendees will be able to pitch their digital business ideas and could win up to $5,000 in prizes. Early bird registration, ending April 12 is $49. To register, visit http://startatl.eventbrite.com or call 1-347-460-5115 for more information.
START is part of a nationwide series created by digitalundivided (DID). DID is a social enterprise that builds forward-thinking initiatives that change the digital space by increasing the number of Black and Latino women digital entrepreneurs.
Business experts such as Navarrow Wright, CTO of Interactive One, and Kendra Bracken Ferguson, founder of Digital Brand Architects, and leading investors Lauren Maillian Bias, managing director of Gen Y Capital, and Eghosa Omoigui, managing director of EchoVC, will be on hand to offer expert advice and information to those who attend and have an idea for the next big website, mobile app or blog.
Some of the panels include everything from "What You Need To Know Before Leaving Your Day Job" and "Everything You Need To Know To Build Your Site/Product" to "How to Ask for Money for Your Business" and "How to Market Your Company on the Cheap."
"There are 10.1 million firms in the United States that are owned by women, and people of color are among the fastest growing demographic of the population," said Jane Smith, executive director of the Spelman College Center for Leadership and Civic Engagement. "It is this reality, along with the role of technology in our lives, that motivated Spelman to become the host sponsor of this event."
From the Wall Street Journal to Essence Magazine, DID's activities and initiatives continue to drive the discussion around people of color in the digital space. DID (www.digitalundivided.com) was founded in 2012 by Kathryn Finney, a leader in the social media space, editor-at-large at the global social media powerhouse BlogHer and one of the first style bloggers on the web. In less than six months DID has had a significant impact on increasing the number of successful digital entrepreneurs of color.
- Created on 11 April 2013
AfricaBelle Festival Bringing Communities Together While Celebrating African and Francophone Culture
The French speaking African culture is closer than most Atlantans realize. Instead of learning about the culture from television, reading about it or even making a trip to Africa, the Alliance Française d' Atlanta's widely attended AfricaBelle Festival can enlighten one's curiosity on the culture and its people right here in Atlanta.
For the entire month of April the AfricaBelle Festival will not only serve as a celebration for French speaking Africans but as an outlet for French speakers to mingle and socialize as a means of connecting their culture with the Atlanta community.
"We wanted something really fun. We wanted it to be light and fun yet we wanted to educate people," said Obsé Ababiya, Director of Outreach and Development for Alliance Française d' Atlanta.
"We also wanted to provide a venue for the African French speaking community in Atlanta to present their work and by the same token we wanted to present that culture to the general community in Atlanta."
The AfricaBelle Festival will host its third annual community and cultural celebration during the month long celebration which began April 10 and runs through April 27. It will provide free and ticketed cultural events to expand the perception of Africans while celebrating their culture through art, food and fellowship.
"This is a brain child of the executive director, Hélène Touré. She wanted a series of events focused on Africa," said Ababiya. "It started it out with just one event but then we ended up with a series. It just exploded. We thought it would be just a one-time thing but no, there is a demand for it. So we kept doing it. Now it's our third year."
Supported in part by the City of Atlanta Office of Cultural Affairs and presented in partnership with the High Museum's Friend of African Art, this years' festival will focus on African fashion and identity. The High Museums' Friends of African Art will promote the "Symmetry/Asymmetry: African Textiles, Dress and Adornment" exhibition funded by the Fred and Rita Richman Special Initiative Endowment from March 23 thru August 25.
"The High often partners with the Alliance Française but this is the most extensive High/AF program related to African art," said Carol Thompson the Fred and Rita Richman Curator of African Art at the High Museum.
Thompson, who met Ababiya years ago when taking French classes to prepare her for a visit to Burkina Faso, is an example of how connected the African and French speaking community is and how much a part of the Atlanta community they are and can be.
"The hardest part about this festival is, really not knowing exactly which African groups to promote our events to," said Ababiya. "A lot of it is done through word of mouth."
"The other problem is there isn't a French-speaking African consulate in town. There isn't one unit body that organizes everybody; there isn't a database of people's mailing list," she added.
Statistically, there are approximately 136 million people who speak French worldwide. More than 90 million of those French speakers live in Africa. It is significant information like this that is often unknown by people who have never been introduced to the culture.
The Alliance Française d' Atlanta, founded in 1912, offers French language lessons in addition to cultural exchange programs that promote the French culture.
The Alliance Française is an independent, non-profit organization. It serves the community by encouraging the study of the French language and its cultures while fostering cultural, intellectual and artistic interactions between the French-speaking world and local communities.
"Because of this same language that they all share, there is a culture. Even if each culture is different, because they share the same language it makes communication easier. You speak the same language, you are like home," said Ségolène de Marolles, Marketing and Communication Director at the Alliance Française d' Atlanta.
Most of the AfricaBelle events will be at the Alliance Française, which is located at 1197 Peachtree Street, Colony Square, Plaza level, Suite 561 in Midtown.
Below is a schedule of events for Africa Belle 2013.
Film & discussion: Pièces d'identité
Wednesday April 10 @ 7pm: $10
African Storytelling and Arts & Crafts for Children
Saturday April 13 at 10am to 13 pm for children
Children 6-12 years old: $5 parents/guardian: free
Cultural Workshop: "Fashion & identity in Zanzibar, the Paris of the Swahili coast" by Sidney Kasfir, Professor Emerita, Art History Department, Emory University
April 24 at 7pm @ the High Museum of Art: Free
AfricaBelle Community Soirée
April 27 at 7pm to 11pm, student $15- AF members: $20- Non-members: $25.
Art Exhibit: Symmetry/Asymmetry: African Textiles, Dress, and Adornment. "Meet the collector: Michael Mack"
@ the High Museum of Art, Skyway Gallery, Wieland Pavilion at 6:00pm to 7:00pm, fee: $10
For more details on the AfricaBelle Festival and for reservations, visit afatl.com.