6 Specific Ways Blacks Are Financially Worse Off Under Obama

Barack Obama’s election was hailed by many as the beginning of a post-racial America in which Black people were going to experience new-found equality. This hope for a post-racial America has been dashed by the fact that recent statistics show that Black Americans have not actually improved in many areas of inequality but instead have stayed the same or gotten worse since Obama’s election.

One of the areas that has worsened is household income and wealth, and although it has fallen for all Americans, it has fallen significantly more for Black Americans under Obama’s watch. The latest figures from the Census Bureau show that from 2009 to 2012 white households median income fell by 3.6 percent while Black households median income fell by nearly three times that amount at 10.9 percent. It is not just income that has fell but also wealth. During the recession from 2007 to 2012, White families only lost 11 percent of their wealth while Black families lost a whopping 31 percent.

While unemployment rates have made a small improvement for Black people during Obama’s presidency, this is nearly negated by the fact that the under-employment rate has gotten 25 percent worse for Blacks under Obama. This has happened despite the fact that under-employment has improved for members of every other racial category. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, 20 percent, or one in five, Black people is under-employed, meaning they have a job but it is insufficient in terms of the number of hours or being overqualified.

Another area where Obama has failed to improve is in guaranteeing loans to Black businesses. Obama’s record is actually worse than that of former President George W. Bush. According to The Wall Street Journal, the percentage of Small Business Administration loans received by Black businesses fell nearly 8 percent since Obama took office. Home loans have also decreased sharply causing the percentage of Blacks who own homes to hit an 18-year low under Obama’s watch.

Retirement savings and benefits for Black families have also taken a hit. The Urban Institute found that black families’ retirement accounts were reduced by 35 percent between 2007 and 2010 despite white families’ accounts increasing by nearly ten percent during the same time period. Black families have also taken a hit in the consumer debt arena during the Obama administration. Although student loans have been the only type of consumer debt that has continued to rise under his administration, Blacks are two times more likely than whites to carry student loan debt.

Clearly the election of a Black president was not a magic bullet to end the financial, employment and wealth discrepancies experienced by Black people. Only history will be able to judge whether or not Obama could have done more to help close the wealth and income gaps between white and Black Americans.


38 Comment

  1. The President should have done more to tackle the inequalities mentioned in this article. While the President should not be viewed as the savior for the black race, he could have spoken up a little more on issues affecting the black community instead of exuding a silent approach towards the issues. Black people, it is time to stand up and carry your own weight, as evidenced by this article, no one is going to stand up for the community. Lace up your bootstraps and make things happen on your own.

  2. UMMMMMM!!!

  3. The feeling you get, when you know you been tricked. Black people have been hoodwinked and bamboozled again.

  4. Yep.

  5. We as blacks have an obligation to find solutions also!

    We as blacks should not place our emergent or rising out of our economic depression all on the shoulder of this president. Putting this economy back on track and seeing that blacks benefit positively is a tall order for any president, let alone one who is aggressively opposed by Republicans sometimes racially. We have an obligation to look for and promote solutions ourselves. This is something we not do . We publicize the problems of our race and how this president has not addressed them but rarely do we write about solutions that we have suggested to the president and if he has rejected them. We sit around and complain but do not suggest fixes. Who among us have suggested positive solutions to this president and had them rejected.
    See a possible solution @ http://www.thefixthistime.com

  6. Why do we blame Obama for everything. Why not blame the party of no (GOP). They block everything he try to improve the country. He not a dictator, he have to work with other to improve this country. If they do a shitty job, he have to find a other ways to work around them. Stop blaming him for other people crap.

  7. We agree with Mr Davis. Blacks must learn to take care of themselves but it's always some Caucasians standing in the way of progress or it's our own people.

  8. I can't believe y'all would be so surprised at this article. I knew this wasn't going to be about real change. He's just a figurehead! Even worse look how many young black men have been murdered at the hands of law enforcement during his presidency(Kimani Gray, Jordan davis,Trayon martin,,etc… etc..) and what does he have to say about those deaths? NOTHING! Man I guess we believe anything this government tell us (Uncle Tom slavementality!!!!

  9. Would the republican policies have been better for blacks? Were these things caused by Obama?

  10. "Only history will be able to judge whether or not Obama could have done more to help close the wealth and income gaps between white and Black Americans."

    History, you say? It appears that you already have your mind made up.

    "Barack Obama’s election was hailed by many as the beginning of a post-racial America in which Black people were going to experience new-found equality."

    Who did all this "hailing" of which you speak? When Barack Obama took office, the stock market had already tanked, several banks were on the verge of collapse, the economy was shedding jobs by the millions, the housing bubble had burst, the nation was in the throes of the worst recession since the depression, GM was contemplating bankruptcy, and that's only the beginning.

    There's no way that blacks could have bucked this economic trend, a trend that impacted the whole economy, notwithstanding who was in the White House, a black president, or a white one.

    For a more balanced account of the president's achievements during his tenure, check out Paul Krugman's article in the October 23, 2014 issue of Rolling Stone.

  11. Articles that make you facepalm…are you seriously implying that Pres. Obama is the major factor in the finance disparity in the United States for African Americans. This has been an ongoing issue even before he was born. The REAL issue is a lack in education of basic financial management and wealth building that should be passed along from parents and the community to the next generation. Wake up and take responsibility for your own shortcomings and IMPROVE upon them instead of blaming someone else.

  12. better learn to adapt to those obstructions or die

  13. there lies the problem, no one wants to take responsibility for themselves and the expectancy that Obama was going to change the mentality of all humans on earth.

    i believe since obama was voted in by a majority of white people black people thus raised the bar higher for whites to prove they were not racist by expecting an end to discrimination and equality in all areas of life during the obama presidency.

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