Monthly Archives: December 2014

HBCU Money™ Dozen 12/8 – 12/12

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Did you miss HBCU Money™ Dozen via Twitter? No worry. We are now putting them on the site for you to visit at your leisure. We have made some changes here at HBCU Money™ Dozen. We are now solely focused on research and central bank articles from the previous week.

Research

17% Of Household Energy Comes From Rooftop Solar In Queensland l Clean Technica http://dlvr.it/7pDtJh

Fungus has an amazing arsenal, from body invasion Alien-style to hallucinogenic poisons l New Scientist http://ow.ly/FNBhe

What is one way to pursue a career in land use law? A former FSG student shares her story. l FL Sea Grant http://ow.ly/FNBEp

Cisco sees a data analytics fortune at the edge of the network l Network World http://ow.ly/FNCwp

The State Leading The US In EV Adoption Is… l Clean Technica http://dlvr.it/7pDF1W

Get your thinking caps on! Monday, NASA + USGS launch the Climate Data App Challenge l EPA Research http://ow.ly/FNDaQ

Federal Reserve, Central Banks, & Financial Departments

Is mass manufacturing come to an end? l World Economic Forum http://wef.ch/12CkRie

Are wages and the unemployment rate correlated? l St. Louis Fed http://bit.ly/1yaVB0c

What will our jobs look like in 15 years? l World Economic Forum http://wef.ch/1DmFQq0

Three trends that signal hard times for renters in 2015 l Philadelphia Fed http://ow.ly/FNFiC

Serious mortgage delinquencies fell during third quarter in the U.S. l St. Louis Fed http://bit.ly/1B2w1J7

Why invest in resilience? Here’s what 0.5m sea level rise would mean l World Bank http://wrld.bg/FLHsE

Thank you as always for joining us on Saturday for HBCU Money™ Dozen. The 12 most important research and finance articles of the week.

The HBCU Money™ Weekly Market Watch

Our Money Matters /\ December 12, 2014

A weekly snapshot of African American owned public companies and HBCU Money™ tracked African stock exchanges.

NAME TICKER PRICE (GAIN/LOSS %)

African American Publicly Traded Companies

Citizens Bancshares Georgia (CZBS) $8.75 (0.00% UNCH)

M&F Bancorp (MFBP) $4.53 (0.00% UNCH)

Radio One (ROIA) $1.38 (0.72% UP)

African Stock Exchanges

Bourse Regionale des Valeurs Mobilieres (BRVM)  246.61 (0.32% UP)

Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE)  9 502.25 (0.06% DN)

Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE)  2 306.73 (7.53% UP)*

Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE)  163.52 (N/A)

Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) 49 506.59 (0.23% UP)

International Stock Exchanges

New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) 10 960.37 (0.07% UP)

London Stock Exchange (LSE)  3 607.25 (0.95% UP)

Tokyo Stock Exchange (TOPIX)  1 445.67 (0.35% UP)

Commodities

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America’s Farms: African American Women Principal Operators Increase, But Not Enough

By William A. Foster, IV

Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field. – President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

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Typically, I abhor the term people of color, women of color, men of color, and well you get the idea. It lumps a bunch of different groups – and more importantly their interest – into this false sense of PoC (us) versus the evil Europeans (them). Diaspora groups of all ancestry have vied for resources against each other for thousands of years. People of color have waged wars against each other well before Europeans ascended to the top of the power pile over the past thousand or so years. However, in this case there actually is a stark trend developing between women of color and women of European descent and it is going to impact America’s food plates in livings rooms and restaurants across the country and around the world. 

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Men lie, women lie, and sometimes numbers can be misleading. A look at the state of women principal operators from 2007 to 2012 in the latest USDA Agricultural Census would suggest that their is an crisis in farming among women. In 2007, there were 306 209 women principal operators, but as of 2012 there was a reported 288 264 or a drop of almost 6 percent. However, this is where the numbers are a bit misleading. African, Asian, Latina, and Native American women all saw increases in their women principal operators of 4.5 percent, 32.8 percent, 19.4 percent, and 13 percent, respectively. European American women principal operators saw a drop of 7 percent and despite the drop in their ranks they still constitute 93 percent of all women principal operators. In other words, women of color just do not constitute a large enough of the farming population to move the needle – yet. In a generation however, their importance to the health of the communities they represent could have echoing effects on economic and political power going forward.

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In an article from the LSU Agriculture Center they reported, “There are 239 counties in the U.S. where at least a quarter of the population receives food stamps. In over 750 counties, SNAP is helping to feed one-third of African Americans.” Just for clarity there are 3 141 counties in the United States according to the United States Geological Survey. Part of the problem is that still in our community it remains difficult to access quality food at an affordable price. This is especially important given our lack of institutional wealth (see decline in African American land ownership) has resulted in our tendency towards unhealthy foods and being able to predominantly afford sugar and salt laden products that fill us, but damages our quality of health or health capital in the long-term. Quality of life naturally impacts an ability to earn a living and for how long, being engaged in civic discourse, and be an active primer in the social molding of family and community.  The CDC reports that almost 15 percent of African Americans are in poor health. Even more disturbing is the African American obesity rate, which for African American men over 20 is 37.9 percent and for African American women over 20 is an astounding 57.6 percent. Lastly, hypertension among African American men over 20 is at 40 percent and women over 20 is at almost 50 percent just to further drive the health point home. Given the importance of African American women to the economics of African American households (African America is the only group where the women outnumber the men in employment) their long-term health both in relation to their ability to work and birth healthy children is paramount to the community. There is also the anthropological assumption that since women have long been the leadership of nutrition in all households that they have a significant psychological vested interest in improving the quality of food to their families if given the means to do so. Having more African American women engaged in the production of the food at the beginning could lead to a significant change in the eating habits of the entire community at the end of the value chain.

The question then is how can we build upon numbers for African American women farmers and understanding its importance to the African American family and community. As it is, if current trends hold, Asian American women will outnumber African American women as principal operators within ten years. The answer could lay in a private-pubic approach between 1890 HBCUs and existing African American owned agricultural businesses. Each 1890 HBCU, the 20 HBCU schools excluding West Virginia State University because of demographics, through the Association of Public Land-Grant Universities could add to its list of initiatives a means of engaging young girls about the agricultural and farming process. Private HBCU owned companies that are involved in farming like Chestnut Hollow Farms, LLC run by Norfolk State University alum Harold Blackwell would add the private component with 1890 HBCUs to especially target girls and introduce them to help them understand the business side of farming.

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Health is wealth, but unfortunately our health is not in our own hands and especially not in the hands of our nurturers beyond the preparation of it at the end of the value chain. Sometimes it is intangibles or the qualitative factors that can not be measured (peppered with quantitative data) that can be the key to changing our behavior from the farm to the plate where African American women innately are filled with data from generations of their mothers and grandmothers stories. It is true, there is nothing quite like a woman’s touch and that may be the very thing that brings African American owned farm back to prominence.

African America’s November Jobs Report – 11.1%

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Overall Unemployment: 5.8% (5.8%)

African America Unemployment: 11.1% (10.9%)

Latino America Unemployment: 6.6% (6.8%)

European America Unemployment: 4.9% (4.8%)

Asian America Unemployment: 4.8% (5.0%)

Previous month in parentheses.

Analysis: The overall unemployment rate went unchanged. Rising and falling unemployment was split between the four groups with African and European America both seeing blips upward and Latino and Asian America seeing blips downward. African America continues to be the only group with double digit unemployment.

African American Male Unemployment: 11.2% (10.7%)

African American Female Unemployment: 9.6% (9.4%)

African American Teenage Unemployment: 28.1% (32.6%)

African American Male Participation: 67.1% (67.7%)

African American Female Participation: 62.0% (61.4%)

African American Teenage Participation: 30.3% (29.0%)

Previous month in parentheses.

Analysis: African American males were hit with a double negative seeing their unemployment rate climb 50 basis points and their participation rate decline 60 basis points. African American females had their unemployment rate relatively unchanged with a slight uptick 20 basis points, but a healthy climb in participation rates of 60 basis points. African American teenagers achieved a double positive with their unemployment rate dropping an unprecedented 450 basis points and their participation rate increasing 130 basis points.

CONCLUSION: The overall economy added 321 000 jobs in November. This is the biggest gain of jobs in nearly three years and marks at least ten months of at least 200 000 job gains or more which has not happen in almost thirty years. African America added just 31 000 jobs in November; a rebound from its loss of 41 000 jobs the previous month. In the overall economy white-collar jobs led the way, but the same is not true for African America. African American teenagers led the way with a 56 000 jobs breaking through 500 000 plus employed for the first time this year. A much needed boost for a much maligned group. African American females also had a healthy gain of 86 000 jobs and reaching their second highest participation rate in the past five months. Unfortunately, with African American males in the decline African America now needs 222 000 jobs added to get its unemployment rate to the mythical 9.9 percent. An increase from last month’s 210 000 needed.

HBCU Money™ Business Book Feature – The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity

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A revolution is under way.

In recent years, Google’s autonomous cars have logged thousands of miles on American highways and IBM’s Watson trounced the best human Jeopardy! players. Digital technologies—with hardware, software, and networks at their core—will in the near future diagnose diseases more accurately than doctors can, apply enormous data sets to transform retailing, and accomplish many tasks once considered uniquely human.

In The Second Machine Age MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee—two thinkers at the forefront of their field—reveal the forces driving the reinvention of our lives and our economy. As the full impact of digital technologies is felt, we will realize immense bounty in the form of dazzling personal technology, advanced infrastructure, and near-boundless access to the cultural items that enrich our lives.

Amid this bounty will also be wrenching change. Professions of all kinds—from lawyers to truck drivers—will be forever upended. Companies will be forced to transform or die. Recent economic indicators reflect this shift: fewer people are working, and wages are falling even as productivity and profits soar.

Drawing on years of research and up-to-the-minute trends, Brynjolfsson and McAfee identify the best strategies for survival and offer a new path to prosperity. These include revamping education so that it prepares people for the next economy instead of the last one, designing new collaborations that pair brute processing power with human ingenuity, and embracing policies that make sense in a radically transformed landscape.

A fundamentally optimistic book, The Second Machine Age will alter how we think about issues of technological, societal, and economic progress.