BPI Releases Report Profiling Innovative Bank Practices to Close Racial Equity Gaps, Bolster Diversity

BPI’s Fabrice Coles to testify at hearing on economic development efforts in the financial services industry

Washington, D.C. — The Bank Policy Institute today unveiled a report offering best practices for banks as they intensify their efforts to support racial equity. The report, “The Time Is Now: 30 Best Bank Practices to Help Improve Outcomes in Black Communities,” is the result of a year-long effort to work with banks to identify, study and share innovative steps banks are taking to deepen their engagement, broaden access to affordable financial services and credit, diversify their workforces and serve as engines of shared prosperity. Many BPI members are already showcasing their efforts in this space, and this report will allow banks to share successful experiences on how to best meet the needs of their customers, employees, and the communities they serve. The profiled practices are intended to provide a menu of innovative options for banks to select from as they develop, enhance and tailor their engagement efforts to address inequity.

BPI’s Vice President of Government Affairs Fabrice Coles will address some of these practices when he testifies at the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion’s hearing on George Floyd’s legacy and the financial services industry’s commitments to economic and racial justice.

“Over the last year, BPI member banks have reinvigorated their efforts to address economic inequality,” said BPI President and CEO Greg Baer. “Today we are profiling select banks’ practices as a way to share the best ideas across institutions.”

“The nation’s banks are helping address racial inequity by leveraging business models, networks and resources to better serve Black communities,” Fabrice Coles said. “Much more work is left to be done but banks are engaged across the country in efforts to bring positive change—especially in the wake of the deadly pandemic and global awakening brought about by the murder of George Floyd.”

The best practices include, but are not limited to:

  • Investments, such as equity capital infusions in Black-owned financial institutions;
  • Partnerships, such as with governments, historically Black colleges and universities, affordable housing organizations and Black-owned broker-dealers;
  • Product innovation, such as low-cost deposit accounts and responsible, affordable emergency loans; and
  • Philanthropy delivered efficiently to new types of organizations, like providers of children’s programming.

In addition to supporting Black homeownership, credit access and entrepreneurship, banks are looking within their own businesses to make sure their workforces and senior leadership reflect America’s diversity. These best practices represent actions banks are already taking, but banks’ work to ensure Black Americans can build wealth and access opportunities will continue to evolve to meet the challenge.


About Bank Policy Institute.

The Bank Policy Institute (BPI) is a nonpartisan public policy, research and advocacy group, representing the nation’s leading banks and their customers. Our members include universal banks, regional banks and the major foreign banks doing business in the United States. Collectively, they employ almost 2 million Americans, make nearly half of the nation’s small business loans, and are an engine for financial innovation and economic growth.

Media Contact:

Sean Oblack
Bank Policy Institute

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