Commentary

The Critical Role of Business Executives in Employee Financial Security

Employee financial security can help workers and companies of varying sizes and industries thrive together, not just in quarterly earnings but over a longer horizon. While we know that business executives alone don’t hold the power to fully transform industry norms, their influence and actions…

How CSAs and Baby Bonds Can Work Together to Close the Racial Wealth Gap

Last month, Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) announced his intention to introduce a bill to address massive income inequality in the United States. American Opportunity Accounts (AOAs), or “Baby Bonds” seek to aid in closing the racial wealth gap that underlies much of the inequality that affl…

Bringing Social Impact to FinTech

Earlier this month, Boston FinTech Week took place - a week of events convened by FinTech Sandbox and organized by Boston’s accelerators, institutions, startups, and firms to build the local FinTech ecosystem. Commonwealth was excited to lend our voice on social impact, financial security, and…

Board Reflections: An Interview with Keith Malbrue

Board Reflections is a series of interviews with Commonwealth board members discussing their views on emerging financial challenges, innovative solutions, and the future. “Big data” can conjure an exploitative dystopia.  Can it be a good deal for consumers? That is the optimistic …

Tax Refund Splitting Can Help Families Save

From Berkshire County to Barnstable, one thing binds Massachusetts residents together: taxes. Tax time happens predictably every year, and a tax refund is often the largest single payment of money a household receives all year. While much of that refund may be…

The CFPB’s Data Sharing Principles

In October, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released “Consumer Protection Principles: Consumer-Authorized Financial Data Sharing and Aggregation.” These principles acknowledge the growth and promise of tools that, with user permission, access and use data from users&rsquo…

Board Reflections: An Interview with Brigitte Madrian

Board Reflections is a series of interviews with Commonwealth board members discussing their views on emerging financial challenges, innovative solutions, and the future. It is difficult to miss something you never had.  And what you call something makes a difference. Brigitte Madrian, a memb…

Board Reflections: An Interview with Howell Jackson

Board Reflections is a series of interviews with Commonwealth board members discussing their views on emerging financial challenges, innovative solutions, and the future. Personal choice.  Personal responsibility.  It is hard to argue against that pair of values. Yet while that is true i…

A New Framework for Innovation in the Federal Banking System

Federal regulatory agencies are often perceived as barriers to innovation, particularly in the financial services sector. However, there are efforts underway to change that perception. Last week the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released a new framework for responsible innovation i…

Save Your Tubmans in an MLK, Jr.?  Yes, Please.

The day after the announcement in April that Harriet Tubman would be the new face of the $20 bill, the Treasury Department tweeted an image of four major national newspapers heralding the move on their front pages. The New York Times called it nothing short of “the most sweeping and historical…