What does it mean not to have, for lack of opportunity, access to something as simple as a bank? For one, it means you are probably stuck with predatory check-cashing and pay-day loan companies for getting access to ready cash—and sure this is no secret, but consider in addition: You have no access to something as simple as a humble savings account, and this means that you can’t even keep what little savings you do have safe from theft, fire, or other disasters. You have no way of keeping your savings from being eaten away by inflation. You’re money is not insured by the FDIC, indemnifying you against fraud and malfeasance. Many online services are unavailable to you because they require a legit checking or savings account as proof of identity and as a guarantee of income. You can’t take out a loan or pay your bills without wasting time and effort. In short, life is a grinding, money sapping, poverty enforcing bitch!
A FDIC survey, reported in the Washington Post, estimates that almost 1/4 of American households, almost 60 million families have limited or no access to banks or other traditional financial services.