Banking on the future

Banking on the future

Sign up for the weekly edition of The Currency newsletter delivered to your inbox. 📧


Call it a time warp: We spy some repeating patterns (and we don’t just mean the fictional 1970s band that has us groovin’ to modernized “classic” rock). 

We’re talking about banking strife. Generational money worries. Social media debates. (Read: Is time up on TikTok?) 

Whether you can say “I knew it” or not, we’ll be over here keeping our cool by sticking to our plan, aka Financial Roadmap, as our best shot at letting the good times roll — and rolling the tough times off our backs. 

The Editors 

AI’ll do it: In a new side-hustle trend, people are using AI to produce work* on their behalf. Though results vary, they (the humans) are cashing in. One children’s book project has earned the author $2,600 in royalties. 

Mint Mo’bill: Earlier this month, T-Mobile entered an agreement to purchase Mint Mobile for up to $1.35 billion. Minority stakeholder and brand ambassador Ryan Reynolds is expected to walk away with $300 million.* Now that’s some employee equity

Regional rally: The FDIC announced* that First Citizens Bank is scooping up $72 billion of assets from SVB at a $16.5 billion discount, in a deal many analysts say should strengthen the regional banking system. 

Unreal retro win: Amazon Prime Video’s new series “Daisy Jones & the Six” may center on a fictional band, but the chart-topping success* of the show’s record “Aurora” is very real; the companion album sold 21,000 copies in its first two weeks. And at $19.98 on Amazon, the audio CD spun to the tune of $420K in just 14 days. 

Cash on the line 

This month’s bank collapses have left many consumers wary, with an estimated $550 billion deposits moved* from smaller and regional banks to larger institutions and money market funds in the past couple of weeks. 

Cash may make up a sizeable portion of your overall portfolio if you’re like the average person who uses Empower Personal Dashboard™. Cash amounts to almost 28%** of the average user’s portfolio at nearly $66,000 per person** – no small chunk of change. 

Cash can play an important role in a diversified portfolio. It provides easy access for your emergency fund and short-term financial goals, like buying a new car or making a home down payment within the next couple of years. So it’s understandable if the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank raises questions about your account’s safety – wherever you choose to bank.  

Get Empower’s take on safeguarding your cash with FDIC coverage, while also keeping it flexible, growing with APY, and free of fees. 

Giving Gen Z some credit 

More Americans than ever (78%) fear their kids won’t be better off* than their parents are, according to a new Wall Street Journal-NORC Poll. That represents the highest share since the periodic survey kicked off in 1990. Ouch. 

The poll, which ran prior to March’s banking turmoil, found roughly 4 in 10 worry about healthcare and housing costs, and nearly two-thirds said inflation is a major concern. 

So just how are the youths faring in this challenging economic environment? 

While Gen Zers say in a recent survey* they maintain less debt than their older counterparts, a recent report from Credit Karma shows that Gen Z is amassing credit card debt faster* than any other generation.  

Personal debt can certainly cause strain. If you (or the young adults you know) are looking to pay it down, here are our tips on keeping IOUs in check. 

Have we scrolled to the end of TikTok?   

In a five-hour hearing, Congress put the pressure on TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew amid bipartisan concern about data privacy, national security, and TikTok’s ties to Chinese-owned parent company ByteDance. (Watch some of the most contentious moments here.*) 

Lawmakers in the U.S. are weighing a ban on the app, and there’s a lot at stake. With some 150 million active American users* — a 50% increase in just three years — TikTok’s popularity underscores just how embedded the app has become in the ways we play — and pay. A ban would potentially shift billions of advertising dollars* from TikTok to other social media platforms. 



* Empower Retirement, LLC, and its affiliates are not affiliated with the author or responsible for the third-party content provided from links to external material. 

As of March 30, 2023, PCAC and EAG hold shares of AMZN in advisory client accounts and do not hold MITJF, TMUS, FIZN, SIVB, or KARMA.

** Anonymized user data from the Empower Personal Dashboard™ as of 03/23.

RO 2818926-0323 WF-2488558-0323

The content contained in this blog post is intended for general informational purposes only and is not meant to constitute legal, tax, accounting or investment advice. You should consult a qualified legal or tax professional regarding your specific situation. No part of this blog, nor the links contained therein is a solicitation or offer to sell securities. Compensation for freelance contributions not to exceed $1,250. Third-party data is obtained from sources believed to be reliable; however, Empower cannot guarantee the accuracy, timeliness, completeness or fitness of this data for any particular purpose. Third-party links are provided solely as a convenience and do not imply an affiliation, endorsement or approval by Empower of the contents on such third-party websites. 

Certain sections of this blog may contain forward-looking statements that are based on our reasonable expectations, estimates, projections and assumptions. Past performance is not a guarantee of future return, nor is it indicative of future performance. Investing involves risk. The value of your investment will fluctuate and you may lose money. 

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. (CFP Board) owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design), and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it authorizes use of by individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements. 

Advisory services are provided for a fee by Empower Advisory Group, LLC (“EAG”). EAG is a registered investment adviser with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and subsidiary of Empower Annuity Insurance Company of America. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training.