By Thomas Sheffield

When I am talking about Power, I am not talking about the TV show.  I am talking about the power we have as consumers.  African Americans make up 14% of the population (47 million) and make up $1.3 trillion annual economy.  This is enough to be the 15th largest global economy in the world.  This is real power.  I do realize many of us are living pay check to paycheck.  This may make you feel powerless but you must realize, you still have power and you still matter.

Some researchers believe statistically African Americans are headed into a second slavery.  This will be an economic and financial slavery.  Some statistics site by the year 2053 the black median wealth will be ZERO.  An article in the December 2017 Boston Globe already cited the median wealth of black Bostonians. Researchers conducted surveys about the financial condition of households in Boston, Miami, Washington DC and Los Angeles to find out about citizens assets, liabilities, financial resources, personal savings and investment activities.  According to the article, 403 people were surveyed.  The median net worth for African Americans was $8.  Net worth is determined by subtracting debts from assets.

To make it plain, assets are your savings and checking accounts, government bonds, stocks, retirement accounts, business equity, life insurance and money market accounts, along with your house, vehicles or other real estate.  Then subtract your debts like credit card balances, student loans, installment loans, car loans, medical debt and mortgages.  The median result for African Americans in the survey was almost as much as the combined value of what they own.  This equaled only $8.

I do believe this is the greatest country in the world.  There are no black people in the world doing better than blacks here in America.  We are doing so well, other black people are trying to get here.  Therefore, we have a responsibility to make this country and this world be a better place.  Money is the mother’s milk of all intention but if you have no money, all you have is intention.  We must work to increase the median net worth pass $8.

We cannot improve by ourselves.  We have everything we need to succeed, except each other.  We must be better stewards of the things we already have and work together as a force to be reckoned with.  We must therefore demand more from our churches, our political servants, our non profits, and our civic organizations.  Our egos lead us to believe we are able to succeed on our own.  Our pride leads us to believe we are too good to ask for help.  Look at how far this has gotten us.  $8 net worth shows us this way of thinking is doing us no good.  The best is yet to come.  I will have information about financial literacy courses soon.

If you feel the need to learn more, feel free to contact me directly at or follow me on Twitter @tcsheff