Can Innovation Help the Poor Escape from Payday Lenders? Ford Thinks So – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

The Ford Foundation has been working to close the racial wealth gap for over two decades, a gap much in the news these days, and one part of that effort has been to help “unbanked” low-income people escape from the shady world of payday lending and worse, and access the financial services that middle-class people take for granted. To that end, Ford recently gave $1 million dollars to the Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI) to continue its work on building financial tools for the underserved.

Can Innovation Help the Poor Escape from Payday Lenders? Ford Thinks So – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

This Billionaire Is Spending Big to Control Healthcare Costs. Is That a Good Thing? – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

To me, his foundation’s role in helping fan panic over deficits at the height of the Great Recession—when most economists argued that more stimulus was needed to spark growth, not austerity—was deeply irresponsible.

via This Billionaire Is Spending Big to Control Healthcare Costs. Is That a Good Thing? – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

Filling a Gap: This Billionaire Couple Steps Up for Early Childhood As Federal Cuts Loom – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence

Sam Zell is a Chicago businessman with a fortune of nearly $5 billion. His wife Helen is a philanthropist with wide interests and liberal views. The couple has been stepping up their giving, and we watch them closely, although we’re often struck by the inscrutability of the Zell Family Foundation’s giving, and always on the lookout for clues as to where the Zells’ philanthropy is going.

via Filling a Gap: This Billionaire Couple Steps Up for Early Childhood As Federal Cuts Loom – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.

NEXT Awards Are One Way Funders Move Capital To Underserved Communities – Assets | Financial Inclusion | Grants – Inside Philanthropy

If you are a nonprofit that focuses on housing, should you apply for CDFI money? It’s probably a good idea to look into it. Funding from CDFIs has increased since 2008, and appears to be a growing trend.

NEXT Awards Are One Way Funders Move Capital To Underserved Communities – Assets | Financial Inclusion | Grants – Inside Philanthropy.

How Banks Kill the American Dream and Risk Economic Nuclear Meltdown

How do you kill the American dream? One way is to finance people in over their heads, in essence creating debtors out of hard-working people who, in a more sane economy, would be accruing assets. It appears we are ready to go down the path of deregulation again all too quickly. From the New York Times:

“Financial deregulation is similar to relaxing rules on nuclear power plants,” argue Anton Korinek of Johns Hopkins University and Jonathan Kreamer of the University of Maryland in a related working paper for the Bank for International Settlements. It makes it easier and more profitable for the utilities, their shareholders and executives. It might also help ordinary Americans get cheaper electricity. “However, it comes at a heightened risk of nuclear meltdowns that impose massive negative externalities on the rest of society.”

Read more at More Renters, Less Risk for Wall St. – NYTimes.com.

And, for a first-hand account of what it feels like to be ripped off by an unscrupulous bank: http://www.rifuture.org/the-mortgage-debt-crisis-murders-the-american-dream.html

Wells Fargo Is Giving Housing Groups Millions of Dollars. Here’s the Irony in That. – Inside Philanthropy

It’s hard to know how many people lost their homes thanks to this bank’s abusive lending and foreclosure practices, but the answer is probably “a lot.”

Wells Fargo Is Giving Housing Groups Millions of Dollars. Here’s the Irony in That. – Inside Philanthropy: Fundraising Intelligence – Inside Philanthropy.