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Why banks are failing millions in America

(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

The Federal Reserve estimates there are more than sixty million Americans who are either unbanked or underbanked.

That means around one in five adults in the U.S. rely on services like money orders, payday loans, or check cashing to manage their finances.They often avoid banks because of short-term fees, but other services can be even more expensive over time. In 2018, the unbanked and underbanked spent nearly $200 billion on interest and fees.

Many also avoid traditional banking because of distrust for financial institutions. As part of this years Aspen Ideas Festival, we recently spoke to three guests who are all deeply invested in rebuilding that trust and changing a financial system that excludes too many.

Why is traditional banking failing so many Americans? And how can we fix the system?



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Rupert Allman