JP Morgan Wealth by Margot Jordan

Black families have an average net worth of $340,000 compared to $1.1 million for their non-Black counterparts, according to a recent report by Bloomberg1. That's a huge disparity, and one that's worth addressing. A conversation where people can learn about wealth building and feel empowered to take charge of their finances is a great start in helping promote financial literacy in Black families and communities.

As part of JPMorgan Chase’s Racial Equity Commitment to address the wealth gap in communities of color, J.P. Morgan Wealth Management hosted an exclusive barbershop-style panel event with businessman, entrepreneur and star of ABC's "Shark Tank" Daymond John, who discussed Black wealth and the role of community in building and leaving a legacy.

Financial Advisor Ken Farrell, who initially came up with the idea to host a barbershop-style conversation, spoke about why it was necessary to have a discussion in that format. He explained that the idea was initially inspired by Lebron James' HBO series "The Shop" and his own personal experience going to the same barber for over 20 years. There, he saw many famous and non-famous people come get their haircut and engage with others. The 'shop,' as he described, was a sanctuary where Black people came to talk about anything and be a part of a community.

"It is a place to talk about everything going on in our lives: work, family, sports — this is our public forum," said Farrell. "Over the years, I've met very successful people of color who didn't have financial advisors," he added. "There is a distrust of banks within communities of color and partnering with the firm to address these issues is a great opportunity to help rebuild some of that trust."

JP Morgan Wealth by Margot Jordan

The event took place in front of more than 100 people. There is tremendous wealth within Black and Brown communities, but there is often a lack of access to useful tools and resources – so delivering engaging content that will make it back to those communities, and into the "barbershop" so to speak, is more important than ever.

After opening remarks, Jordan Jackson, Market Specialist, J.P. Morgan Asset Management, and James Martin, Associate Regional Director, J.P. Morgan Advisors, kicked off the discussion with John. The three discussed a variety of topics including, best practices to gain financial literacy, how to build wealth and the importance of leaving a legacy.

Martin explained why it's important to take financial advice from professionals and not friends and family – no matter how good their intentions might be. He mentioned that people tend to listen to those who they know and trust, but when it comes to financial education, speaking to an advisor is better than a non-financial professional. John shared his personal wealth journey and how proper education helped shape his mindset and strategy about investing, building and maintaining wealth as an entrepreneur.

Later in the panel, John discussed how he teaches young kids about financial literacy. He recently published a children’s books in which he explores the concepts of earning, spending, budgeting and borrowing to help young children in their future financial journey. From his book, he hopes that all children start to learn basic financial skills, especially if they grow up in communities where money isn't discussed very often.

At the close of the conversation, John shared what legacy means to him and how people can leave a legacy for future generations. He also explained that legacy goes beyond just leaving money to your family – it also extends to philanthropy. John talked about his philanthropic endeavors and encouraged the audience to invest in their communities to help generate wealth.

"In the same way a barber shop offers its community members a space to talk about anything, we wanted to provide diverse clients and prospects a space to learn about financial literacy, but most importantly, connect them with each other," said Farrell.



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Bloomberg, “Black Families Shrink the US Wealth Gap But Still Have 70% Less.” (February 2, 2023).