African American
Business Facts

African Americans don’t feel confident about financial matters – and the majority have never been contacted by a financial services professional.

  • Approximately one in five give themselves a failing grade on their knowledge of investing, planning for wealth transfer or leaving money to the next generation, and saving or investing for a child’s education.
  • Among those surveyed, just 39% of African Americans report that a financial professional has reached out to them. 
  • Of that number, only 14% say they are currently working with a financial professional.
  • More than 79% of African Americans say they are looking for a financial professional they can trust to treat them with respect and to give them guidance on financial matters.

More African Americans carry debt.

  • Around 79% of African Americans have at least some type of personal debt.
  • Credit card debt is most common (49%) and nearly five in 10 (47%) of African Americans with a college degree or higher have student loan debt.

African American Millennials are falling behind.

  • 36% of African American Millennials currently contribute to an employer‑sponsored retirement plan such as a 401(k), versus 44% of Millennials in the U.S. general population.
  • Only 67% of Millennials in the African American population (compared to 84% of their counterparts in the U.S. general population) report having at least one financial product in their household.

Source: The African American Financial Experience, 2015-16 Prudential Research