Blacks lead in one personal finance statistic—bankruptcy dismissal

by Damon Carr, For New Pittsburgh Courier

Black Americans are more likely to have their bankruptcy filings dismissed or being steered towards filing Chapter 13 over filing Chapter 7

~ Atlanta Black Star

According to an article appearing in Atlanta Black Star, a recent study released by the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business reveals bias in bankruptcy dismissal rates. This study, along with a 2012 report, found that Black Americans were more likely to be advised to enter Chapter 13 versus Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings, revealing implicit bias existing in bankruptcy advice and proceedings.

Damon says:

Just when you thought you’ve heard it all, Black people don’t get a fair shake at bankruptcy court?? Implicit Biases—suggest upwards of 80 percent of Bankruptcy filings are dismissed for Black People. Meaning Black People don’t get the 2nd chance at a Fresh Start Bankruptcy protection supposed to afford those who could not afford to pay their bills.

The report states that the majority of Blacks are steered towards filing a Chapter 13 payment plan as opposed to chapter 7 straight liquidation. Across all races, 50 percent of all Chapter 13’s are dismissed from failure to honor payment plans. In other words, those bankruptcy payment plans don’t work!  Yet Black people tend to be forced to go the payment plan route as opposed to the slate being wiped clean from the date of discharge as offered under a Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing.

I find it odd that every published financial statistics I’ve ever read that involves race, Black people are LAST! However, when it comes to admitting to the courts that we’ve fallen behind on our bills and we can’t catch up, we are at the TOP of the list—Number 1 for not being able to get bailed out? As a racial group: Black people make the least income! Black people have the lowest net worth!  Black people have the lowest homeownership rate! Black people have the lowest credit scores! How is it possible that Black people have the highest dismissal rate when it comes to bankruptcy!? How sway!?

I’m not advocating bankruptcy. In fact, I work hard to help people “Get A Grip On Their Money” and avoid negative money experiences including bankruptcy.



Kobe Bryant’s Investment in BodyArmor Now Doubles His Career Earnings

~ VladTV

The late, great Kobe Bryant entered into the investment space with his 2014 investment of $6 million in the upstart sports drink company BodyArmor.

Fast forward seven years, and that investment has witnessed a 13,233 percent overall gain totaling nearly $800 million. Kobe’s investment more than doubles his career earnings in a little over a quarter of his entire playing career.

Damon says:

Investing made Kobe more money than his hoop game and he’s a top 5 player on anyone’s list.  It took him a quarter of the time to do so. Let that marinate!

Kobe was an amazing human being. His strong work ethic, relentless dedication, consistency and his Mamba mentality allowed Kobe to succeed in practically everything he attached his name to. He’s the winner of 5 NBA championships, 2 NBA Finals MVP, A NBA Most Valuable Player, an Oscar and countless other accolades.  He’s a manifestation of proof that when confidence, competence, consistently are combined with a strong work ethic, greatness awaits you!

Since my hoop dreams died over 30 years ago, I’d like to expound on some personal financial gems we can learn from Kobe.

Multiple Streams of income: Kobe derived income as a NBA player, business owner, shoes, apparel, endorsements, and investments to name a few.  We should all aspire to have multiple streams of income. Multiple streams of income is no longer a luxury, it’s a necessity.

Investing is wealth accumulation:  Watching Kobe put in the work on the basketball court and reading several stories of how other celebrities squander through millions of dollars, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Kobe had made some great investments.  Although Kobe invested in Body Armor when it was a private company isn’t something many of us have the resources to do, it’s important to note that saving and investing is how you Flex your money muscles! It’s incumbent upon us to make our hard-earned dollars work hard for us!

Adopt the Mamba Mentality: The Mamba Mentality is a mindset for constant self-improvement in the pursuit of your highest potential in life. You simply cannot go wrong striving to be the best you!



What does $100,000 per year look like in a paycheck?

~ Facebook Question

Damon says:

The coveted $100,000 plus salary. There’s always conversation regarding the goal to earn six figures or  $100,000 per year. Many strive for it. Few achieve it. Less than 15 percent of Americans earn $100,000 or more per year.

Below is what it looks like after taxes and other payroll deductions:

  • Approximately $3,050 per pay
  • Approximately $6,100 per month

Point is $100,000 is great money but you still have to save to purchase big-ticket items and avoid mountains of debt.

Clearly, earning upwards of $100,000 per year is challenging.  Here’s a little secret….Unless you’re in sales, executive management, information technology, lawyer, or doctor, it’s hard to convince an employer to pay you $100,000 or more. But it becomes easier if you incorporate multiple streams of income. Sure, it will demand more man-hours than a traditional 40-hour work week. But those earning upwards of 6-figures work anywhere from 50-55 hours per week.

I have two single mom clients—both who live in my hometown, Youngstown, Ohio. Like Pittsburgh, Youngstown suffered greatly when the steel mills started closing. However, Youngstown has had a harder time recovering.  Opportunity for 6- figure jobs in Youngstown is even harder to come by.

These two single mom’s both adopted and applied my multiple streams of income philosophy. They are both tracking to earn 6-figures for the first time in their life.  One is a Registered Nurse and the other is a Social Worker. Both have second jobs. They work these extra jobs in an effort to enter the coveted 6-figure income status. More importantly, they work these extra jobs because it will help them achieve other financial goals they have faster.

(Damon Carr, Money Coach can be reached at 412-216-1013 or visit his website at

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