Banking

BofA investing up to $150 million in Middle-Income Housing Preservation Fund

BofA investing up to $150 million in Middle-Income Housing Preservation Fund

Collaborating with Enterprise Community Partners and Developers to preserve housing for middle-income earners

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Bank of America Community Development Banking is investing up to $150 million in equity to preserve more than 3,000 affordable homes nationwide for middle-income households in partnership with Enterprise Community Partners (Enterprise), one of the nation’s largest affordable housing organizations.

Bank of America and Enterprise will help working Americans across the country earning between 80% and 120% of area median income remain in housing they can afford. According to the Pew Research Center, about half of Americans (49%) said this was a major problem where they live, up 10 percentage points from early 2018.

“As rent costs outpace income growth, the continued lack of affordable housing inventory is forcing families to make difficult decisions on how and where they live,” said Maria Barry, Bank of America Community Development Banking national executive. “This fund will focus on the “missing middle,” which refers to middle income individuals who make too much money to qualify for subsidized housing but make too little to afford market rate housing in their community.”

According to Harvard University’s 2022 State of the Nation’s Housing report, home prices rose 20.6% from March 2021 to March 2022 and rents jumped 12%, showing that unaffordability worsened even further in the past two years. Both Enterprise and Bank of America will leverage their national networks and resources to help accelerate the preservation of affordable housing.

“Preserving affordable housing for middle-income households is more critical today than ever as our country faces the worst housing shortage in generations,” said Lori Chatman, interim co-CEO of Enterprise Community Partners. “Through our work with Bank of America, we are able to fill a gap to creatively finance projects that will preserve the supply of affordable homes and build resilience and upward mobility for thousands of families.”

This fund builds on Bank of America and Enterprise’s partnership spanning more than 30 years to create and preserve thousands of affordable homes. It will expand the partnership to preserve middle income homes by investing critical equity capital to allow affordable housing providers to acquire existing properties that are at risk of being converted into unaffordable, market-rate homes and preserve their affordability for the long term.

Enterprise has 40 years of experience providing affordable housing solutions, capital and community development – under one roof. For 10 years, Enterprise has managed preservation equity funds, which have preserved more than 17,000 homes nationwide, valued at nearly $2 billion.

Bank of America remains committed to helping address the affordable housing shortage. With innovative capital deployment, like its $15 billion Community Homeownership Commitment, the bank works through its lines of business, partnerships and philanthropic support to help provide safe and affordable housing in the communities where we live and work.

Enterprise Community

Enterprise is a national nonprofit that exists to make a good home possible for the millions of families without one. We support community development organizations on the ground, aggregate and invest capital for impact, advance housing policy at every level of government, and build and manage communities ourselves. Since 1982, we have invested $54 billion and created 873,000 homes across all 50 states – all to make home and community places of pride, power and belonging. Join us at enterprisecommunity.org.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 3,900 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATM and award-winning digital banking with approximately 56 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]

 

Jan. 26, 2023|

Bank of America data finds that 2022 was a solid  year for consumer spending, but the new year brings new challenges

Bank of America data finds that 2022 was a solid  year for consumer spending, but the new year brings new challenges

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Bank of America Institute released new analysis today which shows that, while 2022 was a solid year for consumer spending, the New Year brings with it cross-currents for U.S. consumers, including a potentially weaker job market and easing inflation pressures in 2023. Although January and February are typically lighter months, New Year resolutions to get healthy may provide some support for spending.

BofA aggregated credit and debit card data indicates 2022 was a strong year for consumer spending, with total card spending per household up 5.9% year-over-year (YoY).

There was a stark difference, however, between retail/goods spending and non-retail spending (which includes services such as travel and entertainment); average YoY spending growth for retail in 2022 was 3.7% compared to a much stronger 10% in services.

2023 starts with consumers still facing higher living costs, especially utilities, partially driven by a colder December in 2022 than the prior year. BofA internal data shows that the average utility payment per customer increased 13% YoY in December, even as natural gas prices have dropped by more than 50% since the peak price levels in August 2022. And while the labor market remains tight, there are signs of wage growth moderation. According to BofA internal data, consumer after-tax wages decelerated to 2.7% YoY (3-month moving average) in December, from the high of 8% in April 2022.

With these trends in mind, a new year often signals a fresh start and good intentions, illustrated by an uptick in web searches for “gym memberships” each January. BofA internal data shows that between 2010 and 2019, credit and debit card spending per household at fitness clubs surged in January of each year, after relatively low levels during the winter holiday months. However, as of December 2022, card spending per household at fitness clubs remained 35% lower than pre-pandemic levels. Part of this weakness could be due to the rise of in-home fitness, which gained popularity since the pandemic because of migration out of city centers and a preference for social distancing, especially among older generations.

Other highlights of the Consumer Checkpoint include:

  • Total credit and debit card spending per household was up 5.9% YoY for all of 2022, with the YoY rate of growth slowing to 2.2% in December.
  • Overall total credit and debit card spend, which makes up over 20% of total payments, was up5% YoY in December, as total payments growth across all channels (Automated Clearing House (ACH), Bill Pay, Credit and Debit Card, Wires, Person-to-Person, Cash and Check) increased 1.4% YoY.
  • In 2022, in-home fitness spending (based on both cards and ACH) accounted for 16% of total fitness spending on average, down from 24% in 2020 but higher than the 11% in 2019.

“After a solid year in 2022, we expect the consumer to feel the weight of 2023. However, for now, they are heading to the gym in OK financial shape” said David Tinsley, senior economist for Bank of America Institute. “While the year is just beginning, a reduction in cost-of-living pressures and some easing in the labor market are expected to play a big role in determining the evolution of consumer spending.”

About the Consumer Checkpoint

Consumer Checkpoint is a regular publication from Bank of America Institute. It aims to provide a holistic and real-time estimate of US consumers’ spending and their financial well-being, leveraging the depth and breadth of Bank of America proprietary data. Such data is not intended to be reflective or indicative of, and should not be relied upon as, the results of operations, financial conditions, or performance of Bank of America.

See the Consumer Checkpoint for methodology and definitions.

About Bank of America Institute

Bank of America Institute is dedicated to uncovering powerful insights that move business and society forward. Established in 2022, the Institute is a think tank that draws on data and analyses from across the bank and the world to provide timely and original perspectives on the economy, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG), and global transformation. The Institute leverages the depth and breadth of the bank’s proprietary data, from 67 million consumer and small business clients, 54 million verified digital users, $3.8T in total payments in 2021 and $1.4T in consumer and wealth management deposits. From this robust data set, the Institute provides a unique perspective on the health of the economy. It also elevates thought leadership from throughout the bank that addresses long-term trends and shares these findings with the general public.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 68 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 3,900 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs and award-winning digital banking with approximately 56 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]

Jan. 13, 2023|

Florida First Capital remains top SBA lender

Florida First Capital remains top SBA lender

 

Florida First Capital Finance Corporation (FFC) is pleased to announce it is once again the top Small Business Administration (SBA) lender in Florida for fiscal year 2022. This is the 7th consecutive year FFC has been #1 statewide.

Florida First Capital provided $348,713,000 in SBA dollars to small businesses and helped create 2,621 jobs. The company also finished the fiscal year ranked fourth nationally out of 270 CDCs across the country.

Florida First Capital is a nonprofit certified development company, created by the state of Florida to promote economic development and job creation by small businesses. SBA 504 loans are provided in partnership between CDCs like Florida First Capital and commercial lenders. In FY 2022, Florida First Capital and its commercial lending partners loaned $859,560,078 total dollars to Florida’s small businesses.

“This accomplishment is a testament to the Florida First Capital professional lending team and our lending partners who work diligently to help small business owners grow and succeed through the 504 loan program,” said Todd Kocourek, President and CEO of Florida First Capital Finance.

The SBA 504 Loan Program provides up to 90% financing at below-market, fixed interest rates for as long as 25 years to help small businesses buy or build commercial property, purchase heavy duty machinery and equipment and/or refinance commercial debt. “In a rising rate market, the 504 loan remains the best solution for small business owners,” said Kocourek.

In the SBA North Florida District during FY 2022, Florida First Capital dominated the market with $142,999,000 total approved dollars and 1,215 jobs created. In fact, of the SBA lenders serving north Florida, Florida First Capital lent 66% more SBA dollars and created more than twice the number of jobs than the next 5 lenders combined.

Since 1983, Florida First Capital has helped thousands of small businesses grow and expand, create jobs, and strengthen Florida’s economy. For more information on the SBA 504 Loan Program, visit our website at www.ffcfc.com or call 800.504.LOAN.

About Florida First Capital

Florida First Capital is Florida's original statewide certified development company promoting economic development and job creation. Under the SBA 504 Loan Program, Florida First Capital works with private-sector lenders to provide eligible small business owners in Florida and Alabama and Georgia (dba First Capital Finance) with below-market, fixed interest rate long-term financing for the purchase of capital assets, such as owner-occupied commercial real estate and/or fixed heavy duty machinery and equipment.

Get in Touch: Email us at [email protected] or call us toll-free at 800.504.LOAN.

Stay Informed: Visit or website to sign up for monthly interest rate releases plus the latest small business lending information through e-alerts and our SBA 504 Q&A articles.

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]
Nov. 7, 2022|

Bank of America finds 66% of small business owners expect revenue increases; 52% plan to expand their businesses

Bank of America finds 66% of small business owners expect revenue increases; 52% plan to expand their businesses

New report spotlights women and minority business owners, including challenges and overall business and economic outlook

 

 

Despite headwinds from supply chains, inflation and labor shortages, small business owners are forecasting a strong year ahead, according to the 2022 Women & Minority Business Owner Spotlight, a new report from Bank of America exploring the outlook of entrepreneurs nationwide. The report is based on a survey of more than 1,300 small business owners across the country, with additional insights into gender and ethnicity, and found that revenue expectations rose to a seven-year high, and expansion plans increased significantly since the spring. Over the next 12 months:

  • 66% of business owners expect revenue to increase—a seven-year high
  • 52% plan to expand their business—up from 37% this spring
  • 83% plan to obtain funding for their business—up from 70% this spring

As the possibility of a recession looms, 77% of entrepreneurs say their business is equipped to survive a recession.

“As we look ahead to 2023, small business owners are optimistic about the future, even with ongoing economic challenges and uncertainty,” said Sharon Miller, President, Small Business, Head of Specialty Banking and Lending at Bank of America. “The data underscores what we’ve seen time and time again: the continued resilience of small business owners whose success remains foundational to our local and national economies.”

Inflation and commodities prices are top concerns

When asked about their primary concerns, small business owners identified inflation (75%) and commodities prices (69%), followed by a potential recession (67%), the U.S. political environment (66%) and interest rates (65%). A strong majority (88%) say inflation and supply chain issues (80%) are continuing to impact their operations, leading to price increases.

Hiring plans are up significantly with wages on the rise to attract talent

Amid labor shortages, business owners reported that their hiring plans are reaching the highest levels in seven years, with 38% planning to hire in the next 12 months. The majority (61%) of business owners say labor shortages are currently impacting their business, up from 41% in the spring. Among those business owners impacted:

  • 49% are working more hours
  • 31% are raising wages to attract competitive talent
  • 30% are having difficulty filling job openings

The report also includes specific insights on the perspectives of women, Black, Hispanic-Latino and Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) business owners, examining key areas including access to capital, business outlook, social change and community.

Women, minority entrepreneurs face barriers accessing capital

More than a quarter (29%) of women business owners surveyed said they do not think they will ever have equal access to capital, while 40% of Black business owners, 27% of Hispanic-Latino business owners and 22% of AAPI business owners said the same.

Minority business owners reported more challenges accessing capital for their businesses than the national average, with 46% of Black and Hispanic-Latino business owners and 55% of AAPI business owners reporting they’ve personally faced challenges. Black business owners were most likely to say they are concerned about credit availability—57% of Black business owners surveyed expressed concern vs. 45% overall.

Women business owners project growth but are less optimistic than men

Women business owners have an overall positive business outlook, while confidence in their business and the broader economic landscape is more tempered than their male peers. Over the next 12 months:

  • 63% expect revenue to increase vs. 68% of male business owners
  • 47% plan to expand their business vs. 57% of male business owners
  • 38% are confident that the national economy will improve vs. 50% of male business owners

Overall, women business owners say they face more challenges in business than their male counterparts, with the majority (59%) saying they have to work harder for the same success as men.

Black business owners advocate for social change through their businesses

Fifty-five percent of Black business owners say racial justice and equity are important causes for their business, compared to 30% of non-Black business owners. Eighty-seven percent of Black business owners say they are committed to driving social change through their business, and two in five have active pledges or commitments toward social causes through their business, including volunteering, making operational changes and monetary commitments. As a result of these efforts:

  • 61% say they have increased sales
  • 40% say they deepened ties to their community
  • 34% say they have increased their customer base

In addition, Black business owners are more optimistic than their non-Black counterparts about their business outlook. Over the next 12 months:

  • 72% expect revenue to increase vs. 63% of non-Black business owners
  • 65% plan to expand their business vs. 50% of non-Black business owners

Hispanic-Latino business owners prioritize building generational wealth

Keeping the future of their families in mind, a strong majority (86%) of Hispanic-Latino business owners are committed to building generational wealth through their business—compared to 77% of non-Hispanic-Latino business owners. Community involvement is a priority, too: 88% of Hispanic-Latino business owners say they actively give back to their communities, taking actions such as donating products/services, volunteering and sponsoring local events and teams.

Additionally, Hispanic-Latino business owners are more optimistic than their non-Hispanic-Latino peers about their business outlook. Over the next 12 months:

  • 71% expect revenue to increase vs. 65% of non-Hispanic-Latino business owners
  • 59% plan to expand their business vs. 52% of non-Hispanic-Latino business owners

AAPI business owners rely on family to drive business

AAPI business owners report strong support systems, as 80% say their family supports their business. Providing for the next generation is also top of mind, with 82% of AAPI business owners aiming to build generational wealth through their business. Additionally, more than one in three (37%) AAPI business owners said they received guidance on starting their business from family members.

When asked about their business outlook for the coming 12 months, 62% of AAPI business owners said they expect their revenues to increase, while 60% said they plan to expand their business (vs. 52% of non-AAPI business owners).

 

For an in-depth look at the insights of the nation’s small business owners, please read the full Bank of America 2022 Women & Minority Business Owner Spotlight.

Bank of America 2022 Women & Minority Business Owner Spotlight

Ipsos Public Affairs conducted the Bank of America 2022 Women & Minority Business Owner Spotlight survey online between July 26 and August 17, 2022 using a pre-recruited online sample of small business owners. Ipsos contacted a national sample of 1,308 small business owners in the United States with annual revenue between $100,000 and $4,999,999 and employing between two and 99 employees, as well as 357 interviews of Hispanic small business owners, 369 interviews of Black small business owners and 150 interviews of Asian American small business owners. The final results for the national and demographic segments were weighted to national benchmark standards for size, revenue and region, while the final results for the Hispanic segment were weighted for size, revenue, region, and whether the respondents were primarily English-speaking or Spanish-speaking.

 

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Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,000 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs and award-winning digital banking with approximately 55 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]
Oct. 17, 2022|

Florida SBDC IRSC teaches how to become a bankable business

Florida SBDC IRSC teaches how to become a bankable business

 

 

The Florida Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Indian River State College (IRSC) in collaboration with the Florida Bankers Association will conduct and host the How to Become a Bankable Business seminar.  The event will take place on the IRSC Massey Campus Kight Center For Emerging Technologies in Fort Pierce on Friday, Oct. 21, 2022 from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m.

Capital is critical for entrepreneurs as they launch and grow their businesses. A regionally healthy small business community is essential for sustainable economic development and neighborhood revitalization. Entrepreneurs need access to capital, networks and guidance as they grow. Access to capital supports the region’s recruitment of new business ventures, while also providing existing operators the environment to expand operations, which creates new employment opportunities. Frequently, worthwhile projects with great economic potential never move beyond the planning stage due to the inability to access needed capital.

In this seminar business owners will learn from the top banks in the community, get questions answered from real local lenders, and network with other business owners, bankers, and more.

There is no cost to attend, all interested can register via: https://form.jotform.com/222795410943156

Sponsors and speakers for this event include Marine Bank & Trust, PNC Bank, and SouthState Bank. Refreshments and networking opportunities will be available.

Hosted by Indian River State College, the Florida SBDC at IRSC provides aspiring and existing small businesses in Indian River, St. Lucie, Martin, and Okeechobee counties with no-cost consulting, low-cost training, and access to business data and research resources.

To learn more about this event or the FSBDC at IRSC please call (772) 336-6285, or email [email protected]

 

About the Florida SBDC Network:

For over forty years, the Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance [Fl. Stat. 288.001], has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development to provide existing and emerging small and medium-sized business owners with management and knowledge resources that enable overall growth, increased profitability, and economic prosperity for Florida’s economy.

In 2019, Florida SBDCs provided 114,064 hours of professional business consulting to 12,535 client businesses, resulting in 37,966 jobs impacted; $4.4 billion in sales generated; $496.5 million in government contracts acquired; and $255.3 million in capital accessed; and 453 new businesses started.  With over 40 offices statewide, the Florida SBDC is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners. The Florida SBDC Network, headquartered at the University of West Florida, is nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs and is a recipient of the President’s E Award for Export Service. Florida SBDC services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for individuals with limited English proficiency. For more information, please visit www.FloridaSBDC.org.

 

 

 

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]
Oct. 10, 2022|

Bank of America study says offering financial wellness tools increases employee retention

Bank of America study finds 84% of employers say offering financial wellness tools increases employee retention

97% of employers feel responsible for employee financial wellness, with 91% seeing higher employee satisfaction when offering resources to manage overall wellbeing

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Bank of America announced findings from its 12th annual Workplace Benefits Report, Navigating a New Era of Financial Wellness.” The report revealed that 84% of employers now say that offering financial wellness tools can help reduce employee attrition, and 81% say wellness tools help attract higher quality employees. This is critical to employers, as 46% have seen an increase in resignations over the past year. In addition, approximately one in three employees have switched jobs or thought about switching jobs in the past year.

The report also explored the impact of the current economic and inflationary environment on employees’ financial wellness, revealing that 62% of employees are stressed about their finances. In addition, 80% of employees are concerned about inflation, and 71% feel the cost of living is outpacing growth in their salary or wages. This is having an impact on employees overall feeling of financial wellness. After the percentage of employees who feel financially well bounced above pre-pandemic levels in February 2022 (57% .vs 55% in 2019), the percentage dropped to a 5-year low of 44% in July 2022.

“Offering comprehensive benefits and wellness programs can be critical for employers looking to reduce attrition, can empower employees to take control of their personal finances, and improve employee satisfaction,” said Lorna Sabbia, Head of Retirement and Personal Wealth Solutions at Bank of America. “We are committed to partnering with employers to provide financial wellness solutions through a holistic and integrated approach that’s actionable for every employee.”

Based on a nationwide survey of 824 employees and 846 employers conducted in February, and a second survey of 478 employees conducted in July, the Workplace Benefits Report examines trends related to workplace financial benefits and wellness programs.

Employers are embracing financial wellness programs and expanding support

In response to increased stress about financial wellness, employers continue to embrace programs to expand support for their employees. For example, 91% of employers see higher employee satisfaction when they offer resources to manage overall wellbeing. Other top employer findings include:

  • Employers feel an increased sense of responsibility for the financial wellness of employees. 97% of employers feel responsible for employee financial wellness (up from 95% in 2021, and from 41% in 2013) – with two-thirds (62%) going as far to say they feel extremely responsible (up from 56% in 2021). Employees agree with this sentiment, as 82% say employers should play a role in supporting their financial wellness.
  • Wellness programs result in tangible benefits for employers and employees. 80% of employers agree that offering financial wellness support can result in more satisfied, loyal, engaged and productive employees. Employers who take it a step further and broaden their wellness programs to include mental and physical wellness resources are seeing noticeable improvements in productivity (50%), employee stress (43%), employee morale (41%) and employee creativity and innovation (36%).
  • Equity grants are powerful recruitment and retention incentives. 76% of employers believe equity compensation is a differentiator for employee recruitment and retention, and 44% of employees who participate in equity compensation plans say it was an important reason for accepting the job.
  • Health care remains an opportunity. 84% of employers feel very responsible for their employees’ understanding of retirement healthcare needs and costs, and 89% of employers who offer Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) contribute to their employees’ savings. Healthcare education is an opportunity, with only 54% of employers communicating about these topics at least once a year.
  • Access to investment advice. With four-in-ten employees saying they want access to advice from an investment professional, 62% of employers are now offering employees access to investment advice services (up from 55% in 2021).
  • Heightened focus on D&I programs. 74% of employers believe that diversity and inclusion programs are important for retaining talent, and half (50%) of employers currently offer diversity and inclusion programs.

Employees seeking programs to help alleviate financial strain and plan for the future

Employees express uncertainty about current economic conditions and are taking actions to relieve financial strain:

  • Employees are dipping into savings due to financial strain. Half of employees have taken action in the last six months due to financial strain, including tapping into emergency savings (21%), working additional hours (21%), looking for higher paying jobs (20%) and taking out a 401(k) hardship withdrawal (6%).
  • Retirement remains a top concern, driving action. As of July 2022, 56% of employees are confident they will reach their retirement goals, down from 69% in February 2022. Seventy-four percent say investing in their 401(k) and other accounts will help them build a retirement nest egg, and 61% are contributing enough to maximize their employer match.
  • Education about Social Security is an opportunity. Only 38% of employees say they understand social security benefits. Even among Baby Boomers, 41% still do not understand social security. While 48% of employees indicate they are not getting enough education about the program, only 40% of employers offer employees social security support and education.
  • Employees are more optimistic about their intermediate, longer term future. When looking at the next 2-3 years, most employees said they felt optimistic about their financial (56%), social (60%), and mental (62%) well-being.
  • Digital tools play a key role in driving employee engagement. Employees are seeking out digital tools that offer personalized support, and employees find tools that can provide streamlined information and help track and set financial goals most useful. Fifty-two percent of employees prefer to use a digital app to manage their finances.

Financial wellness levels vary based on employees’ ethnicity, gender and generation

Employees continue to show differences in financial wellness when viewed by gender, ethnicity or generation. Though the financial wellness gap has closed for women, it has expanded for minorities since February. Top findings include:

  • Women lag men but are closing the gap when planning for long-term goals.Women continue to trail men in their feelings about financial wellness and preparedness. For example, 54% of men and 69% of women do not understand social security benefits. Despite this, the financial wellness gender gap is closing. As of July 2022, women were less likely to feel financially well than men by five percentage points (42% of women .vs 47% of men), down from 10 percentage points in 2021 (47% of women .vs 57% of men) and 17 percentage points in 2020 (41% of women .vs 58% of men).
  • Minorities have seen a greater negative impact to their feelings of financial wellness. Employees across various ethnicities reported significant drops in their perceptions of financial wellness, with minorities reporting more significant declines. For example, 49% of White/Caucasian employees feel financially well (compared with 56% in February), followed by 37% of Asian employees (67% in February), 33% of Hispanic/Latino employees (47% in February) and 32% of Black/African American employees (50% in February).
  • Feelings of financial wellness have declined across generations this year. Since February, feelings of financial wellness have declined significantly across generations, with Gen Z/Millennials at -15%, Gen Xers at -14% and Baby Boomers/Silent Generation at -10%.

Bank of America’s Retirement & Personal Wealth Solutions organization serves more than 26,000 companies of all sizes and more than 5.9 million employees as of December 31, 20211. Bank of America offers institutional client employees a range of financial benefit programs and solutions to help them pursue their financial future.

More findings, including action steps for employers, are available in the Bank of America 2022 Workplace Benefits Report.

Workplace Benefits Report Methodology

Escalent surveyed a national sample of 834 employees who are working full-time and participate in 401(k) plans, and 846 employers who offer both a 401(k) plan and have sole or shared responsibility for decisions made in the plan. The survey was conducted between February 3, 2022 and February 28, 2022. To qualify for the survey, employees had to be current participants of a 401(k) plan and employers had to offer a 401(k) plan option. Neither was required to work with Bank of America. Bank of America was not identified as the sponsor of the study. Bank of America Retirement & Personal Wealth Solutions help employers and employees to take action and work toward their financial goals today and into retirement.

July 2022 Pulse Study Methodology

Escalent surveyed a national sample of 478 employees who are working full-time and participate in 401(k) plans. The survey was conducted between July 5, 2022 and July 19, 2022. To qualify for the survey, employees had to be current participants of a 401(k) plan. They weren’t required to work with Bank of America. Bank of America was not identified as the sponsor of the study. Bank of America Retirement and Personal Wealth Solutions help employers and employees to take action and work toward their financial goals today and into retirement.

Financial Wellness at Bank of America

At Bank of America, we know that supporting the physical, financial and emotional wellbeing of our employees in their personal life also supports them in their work life — so they can be the best at work and at home. When it comes to financial wellness, we believe that the more informed people are about their money, the clearer their financial outlook can be. This applies not just to our clients, but to our employees, as well. This is why we offer robust financial offerings to our employees that focus on driving better behaviors across life priorities and the financial spectrum — budgeting, planning, saving, investing and more. Our competitive financial benefits – including 401(k) plans that include a company match, retirement advice2, health savings accounts3, banking4 and investing5 programs, educational resources and financial wellness tools – help employees address money issues in the here-and-now, prepare for retirement and help protect their family over the long term.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,000 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs and award-winning digital banking with approximately 55 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (ATMs) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]
Sep. 30, 2022|

Bank of America payments and spending data shows continued small business resiliency

Bank of America payments and spending data shows continued small business resiliency

Small business payments per client increased 11% year over year in August; Card spending per client increased 13% year over year

 

The Bank of America Institute released a new publication which finds continued resilience in small businesses. New Bank of America small business data shows that, despite economic headwinds, small businesses continue to strengthen in a variety of areas, including credit and debit card spending, business travel expenditures and payroll payments. Overall small business payments per client increased 11% year over year in August, up from 3% year over year in the prior month. Card spending per client increased 13% year over year last month, outpacing July’s 7% growth rate.

One important reason for the continued resiliency in small businesses is the return of business travel. According to the US Travel Association, business travel accounted for more than a quarter of total travel spending in the US prior to the pandemic. Bank of America internal data indicates that the number of travel transactions per small business client is at 90% of the 2019 annual average, the highest level since the pandemic began. This includes airlines, lodging, cruise lines, travel agency, car rental and other transportation. Furthermore, small business card spending per client for travel increased 31% year over year in August, up from 19% in July.

Small businesses also continue to see strength in payroll payments. The average overall payroll spend per client was up 11% year over year in July on a 3-month rolling average, suggesting robust hiring and wage growth momentum. Restaurant and bar payroll payments are easing from recent highs, down to a still resilient 18% year over year in August.

Other highlights of the publication include:

  • Small business card spending varied greatly across annual income tiers, and small businesses with greater annual revenues spent at a faster pace than those with lower annual revenues.
  • For small businesses with annual sales revenue higher than $1 million, card spending per client for travel was up the most, at 43% year over year in August. This increase was partially due to a reversal of the depressed levels of spending on business travel last August due to the spread of the Delta variant.
  • After-tax wages based on the internal Bank of America consumer deposit data for small business clients were up 6.1% year over year on a 3-month rolling basis in August (for more please see our latest Consumer Checkpoint). This outpaces data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which finds that average hourly earnings for August increased by 5.2% year-over-year.

“Despite economic headwinds like high inflation, small businesses are heading into the fall with cautious optimism,” said Anna Zhou, economist for the Bank of America Institute. “We see things like the rebound in small business travel and resilience in payroll payments as further evidence the economy is getting back on track.”

Small Business Checkpoint

Small Business Checkpoint is a regular publication from the Bank of America Institute. It aims to provide a real-time assessment of small business spending activities and financial well-being, leveraging the depth and breadth of Bank of America’s proprietary data. Such data is not intended to be reflective or indicative of, and should not be relied upon as, the results of operations, financial conditions, or performance of Bank of America.

See the Small Business Checkpoint for methodology and definitions.

 

BOA Logo

Bank of America Institute

The Bank of America Institute is dedicated to uncovering powerful insights that move business and society forward. Established in 2022, the Institute is a think tank that draws on data and analyses from across the bank and the world to provide timely and original perspectives on the economy, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG), and global transformation. The Institute leverages the depth and breadth of the bank’s proprietary data, from 67 million consumer and small business clients, 54 million verified digital users, $3.8T in total payments in 2021 and $1.4T in consumer and wealth management deposits. From this robust data set, the Institute provides a unique perspective on the health of the economy. It also elevates thought leadership from throughout the bank that addresses long-term trends and shares these findings with the general public.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,000 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs, and award-winning digital banking with approximately 55 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is listed on the New York Stock Exchange.

 

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]
Sep. 19, 2022|

Bank of America grant to United Way supports economic mobility in Indian River County 

Bank of America grant to United Way supports economic mobility in Indian River County 

 

From left to right: David, L. Osgood, Susan Rabinowitz, Meredith Egan, Jeffrey Petersen, and Tammy Matthew

For many years, Bank of America has worked with nonprofits, local organizations,  and leaders across public and private sectors in the Treasure Coast to help drive economic mobility for vulnerable  populations. Bank of America continues this support with a $7,500 grant to United Way of Indian River County.  

Through the bank’s partnership, the grant will be used to support 36 partner agencies and 45 programs that create long-lasting change in the local community. As a part of a continuing effort to advance the common good, United Way focuses on the building blocks for a quality life – health, education, and financial stability. 

“We are so thankful for Bank of America’s partnership and commitment toward our financial stability impact area!” said  Meredith Egan, Chief Executive Officer. “As these collaborations with key community stakeholders, like Bank of America,  continue to grow, United Way can help more working families and individuals improve their financial literacy and  stability.” 

This grant is aligned with the bank’s broader efforts to advance economic opportunity and equity through health, jobs and reskilling, affordable housing, and small business. As part of those efforts, the bank has granted a total of $150,000  to 14 Treasure Coast nonprofits so far this year.  

“Investing in this partnership is part of our approach to driving economic opportunity and social progress in Indian River County,” said Susan Rabinowitz, president, Bank of America Treasure Coast. “This grant is just one way we are deploying  resources locally to help remove barriers to economic success and build a more sustainable community.” 

In addition to its grant funding, Bank of America’s 243 Treasure Coast teammates pitch in roughly 2,900 volunteer hours yearly. With the constantly changing landscape, charitable grants and fundraising are critical to support the important work of our nonprofit partners.  

United Way

About United Way of Indian River County 

United Way of Indian River County (UWIRC) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that fights for the health, education,  and financial stability of every community member. United Way works with local programs to provide resources to individuals and families in crisis today while working year-round to improve community conditions and create lasting solutions. We are effectively building a strong foundation and improving lives by mobilizing the caring power of our community. For more information about your local United Way, please call (772) 567-8900 or visit our website,  UnitedWayIRC.org.  

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]

 

Aug. 22, 2022|

Marine Bank opens full-service banking center in Fort Pierce

Marine Bank opens full-service banking center in Fort Pierce

 

 

Bill Penney - President & CEO, Marine Bank

Marine Bank has announced that it has opened a full-service banking center in the Seaway Plaza at 604 N. US Highway 1, Suite 604, in Fort Pierce.  Known as the former home of the Padrick Chevrolet dealership in the 50s, the new banking center is on the southeast corner of US Highway 1 and Seaway Drive.  The revitalization of the plaza coincides with many new projects that are planned or already underway in Downtown Fort Pierce.

The banking center will be managed by vice president and banking center manager Melissa Montanez. With more than 20 years of banking experience including 15 years in branch management, Montanez is tasked with introducing Marine Bank’s signature service to an even greater number of businesses and residents of St. Lucie County.  Marine Bank has been operating a residential and commercial lending office at 240 NW Peacock Boulevard, Unit 302 in St. Lucie West since July of 2021.

“We’re excited to fill a void for community banking in the Fort Pierce area,” said Bill Penney, president and CEO of Marine Bank. “We offer banking like you remember. You can call the branch and get a human. You don’t need an appointment to stop by a banking center to open an account or apply for a loan, and our friendly, knowledgeable team returns emails and phone calls. Plus we offer high-tech conveniences such as mobile banking with mobile check deposit, a mobile mortgage app, and user-friendly online banking.  Marine Bank provides the best of both worlds.”

About Marine Bank & Trust

Marine Bank was chartered in 1997 and has $593 million in assets as of March 31, 2022, with five full-service branches in Vero Beach, Sebastian, Melbourne, and Fort Pierce plus a commercial and residential lending office in Port St. Lucie.  As the only community bank headquartered in Indian River County, the Bank’s growth aligns with the national trend of customers choosing to bank local.  Marine Bank has earned the coveted 4-Star Excellent rating from Bauer Financial, the nation’s premier bank rating firm. The bank has been named among the top extraordinary banks in the United States by The Institute for Extraordinary Banking for its commitment to strong community banking.  The Bank is an active community supporter providing over $200,000 to more than 125 local non-profit organizations in the market over the last five years.  For more information, visit the website at www.marinebank.bank.

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]

 

Jul. 11, 2022|

Bank of America study finds younger women taking greater control of their finances

Bank of America study finds younger women taking greater control of their finances

48% of women are confident about their finances, though only 28% feel empowered to act; Top financial regret is not saving and investing sooner in life

 

Bank of America announced findings from a new body of research on women and financial wellness, which finds that 94% of women believe they will be personally responsible for their finances at some point in their adult life. Despite this, about half of women (48%) feel confident about their finances and only 28% feel empowered to take action.

The study, which has been published in a new report titled Women, Money, Confidence: A Lifelong Relationship, gauged how women rate their financial health, with a majority of women reporting they are doing well managing their day-to-day finances, like paying their bills every month (70%) and following a budget (53%), however they are struggling with longer term actions like paying down debt (44%), saving for emergencies (44%), saving for retirement (36%) and building wealth (27%). One-in-five women (21%) acknowledge that it is time to make a change to their finances.

“True financial freedom requires both short-term and long-term planning, and the confidence to take action,” said Lorna Sabbia, Head of Retirement & Personal Wealth Solutions at Bank of America. “It is imperative that we give women the tools and resources to take charge of their financial futures, and to close the gaps between confidence, empowerment and action.”

This new study continues Bank of America and Merrill’s extensive research efforts exploring women’s unique life journeys and how various factors impact their financial well-being. The report is based on a nationwide survey of more than 3,500 women and 1,200 men; and examines the progress women are making on their financial journeys and where they might need additional guidance and support.

Investing is a key barrier and top regret

Women are confident managing everyday financial tasks such as paying bills (92%) and managing a budget (87%), yet only half are confident managing investments (53%) and creating a diversified portfolio (44%).

While women and men have nearly equal influence on day-to-day financial decisions, such as paying bills (68% of women vs. 67% of men) and determining the household budget (63% vs. 63%), less than half of women feel they have influence when it comes to decisions on investments (46% vs. 64%). The top obstacles women say are holding them back from investing include not having savings to invest (38%), lack of knowledge (32%) and believing investing is too risky (22%).

When asked about their financial regrets, nearly half of women (44%) pointed to not saving and investing sooner. Women also say they would have invested more of their money (26%), educated themselves more around money (23%), not taken on as much credit card debt (21%), chosen a career with higher pay (19%), lived within their means (18%) and taken better care of their health (14%).

Other key findings include:

  • Younger women paving the way for open financial conversations. Younger women (ages 22-39) are more comfortable having financial conversations than their older counterparts (ages 65+), including talking with financial advisors (73% vs. 64%), applying for new or better positions at work (74% vs. 42%), discussing new investment opportunities (65% vs. 44%) and asking for a raise (59% vs. 38%).
  • Being debt free seen as the top indicator of financial independence. 47% of women listed being debt-free as the hallmark of financial independence. Other top indicators included being able to weather an unexpected expense (39%), being able to support myself without financial help from my family (34%) and being able to support my family (32%). Paying off debt also topped the list of barriers to improving financial wellness (36%), followed by high cost of living (34%) and not being paid enough (31%).
  • Women’s confidence levels vary for financial events during different life stages. A majority of women are confident about paying for future healthcare costs (56%) and staying comfortable in retirement (54%), but confidence levels drop as it pertains to buying a home (40%), funding children’s or grandkids’ education (38%) and taking care of aging parents (32%).
  • Financial planning varies by groups. While 82% of women have a financial plan, only 30% focused on plans of 10 years or more. Caucasian and Asian-American women are more likely to have long-term plans (35% and 37%, respectively) than Black (20%) or Hispanic (20%) women. Women who identify as LGBTQ+ are also less likely to have a long-term plan (21%).
  • Saving for retirement is top of mind, yet many don’t have an actionable plan. Saving for retirement topped the list of short-term (49%) and long-term (54%) goals, yet one-in-five women approaching retirement do not have a financial plan. In addition, 57% have not figured out how much to save for a comfortable retirement and 40% are not confident about staying comfortable in retirement.
  • Older women turn to Social Security to fund retirement, younger women plan to lean on savings. 90% of women 65+ plan to rely on Social Security in retirement (vs. 49% of women ages 22-39). Younger women ages 22-39 are more likely to plan on using personal savings (63%, vs. 53% of women 65+).
  • Women in the workforce face unique concerns, prioritizing salary increases over time off. About half (49%) of women left the workforce at some point, with the primary reason being caregiving (58%). While 36% returned to a lower-paying job, a majority of women (77%) do not regret their decision to spend time away from their career, and 71% say returning to their job was rewarding. In addition, when asked if they would prefer higher pay or additional time off, 61% said they would prefer a pay increase.
  • Women continue to look for reliable sources of advice to help them on their financial journeys. Though 35% say “a go-to trustworthy source for advice” would help make managing their finances easier and 44% see a financial advisor as a key financial resource, 55% have never worked with one. In addition, though reliance on financial advisors increased only slightly with age (41% of women ages 22-39 vs. 47% of women ages 65+), it increased significantly by income level (35% of women with less than $50k in income vs. 61% of women with more than $250k in income).

“At Bank of America, we’re committed to helping all women navigate the nuances of their financial journeys by providing the foundational education, professional advice and resources needed to build their confidence and take action to achieve financial security,” said Sabbia.

Bank of America’s Retirement & Personal Wealth Solutions organization serves more than 25,000 companies of all sizes and more than 5.8 million employees as of December 31, 20211. Bank of America offers institutional client employees a range of financial benefit programs to help them pursue their financial future, including our Financial Life Benefits® program. Financial Life Benefits offers a suite of workplace benefits and solutions designed to help meet the near- and long-term financial needs of employees. This complete offering brings together traditional financial benefits – including retirement plans 2, health savings 2, equity compensation 2 and non-qualified deferred compensation plans2 – with a range of banking and lending capabilities from Bank of America and investing capabilities from Merrill to help address employees’ financial needs more comprehensively.

Women, Money, Confidence: A Lifelong Relationship Methodology

Ipsos conducted a 21-minute online survey among a representative sample of more than 3,500 women and more than 1,200 men age 22+ in February 2022. Quotas were enforced to ensure results were representative within gender by age, race, income and assets, marital status, employment status, and education. Survey content was developed by Ipsos in consultation with the Bank of America team.

Bank of America

Bank of America is one of the world’s leading financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 67 million consumer and small business clients with approximately 4,100 retail financial centers, approximately 16,000 ATMs, and award-winning digital banking with approximately 54 million verified digital users. Bank of America is a global leader in wealth management, corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes, serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to approximately 3 million small business households through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients through operations across the United States, its territories and approximately 35 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC)  is listed on the New York Stock Exchange

 

Treasure Coast Business is a news service and magazine published in print, via e-newsletter and online at tcbusiness.com by Indian River Media Group. For more information or to report news email [email protected]

 

Jun. 23, 2022|