ARTICLE

Is a Big Bank Exodus Coming?

News Image By Christian Community Credit Union December 06, 2023
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The biblical Exodus is a story that has captivated humanity for generations. An entire people, once slaves to an oppressive ruler, now on a divine journey to find freedom in a land promised by God himself. After over 400 years of slavery, the Israelites will now be in a land where they can worship God freely. 

Familiar to the Exodus story of the Israelites from Egypt, Christians today can relate to the need to align with God’s calling, will, and purposes in the world. Is it possible that Christians are now considering an exodus away from their familiar 'big banks' in order to better align with Christian values? Initial signs are saying yes.

The Environment

While there are numerous reasons why Christians are considering a big bank exodus, below are a few examples based upon ideology and ethical misconduct that have created strained relationships with banks.

According to a recent Fox News article entitled, Corporate wokeness: Big Tech, major banks rated 'high risk' of canceling people, orgs for ideological reasons,“ The 1792 Exchange's report assessed more than 1,000 companies, evaluating their policies, practices, and other relevant criteria to determine the likelihood of them targeting a group or individual based on ideology. 

About 12% of companies were rated "high risk," meaning they "canceled business relationships based on viewpoint and/or has been weaponized to discriminate against people and businesses who do not share their political views." The article went on to state that Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase are among the nation's most prominent companies meeting their definition of high risk.

"This year, we’ve raised awareness about several instances where J.P. Morgan Chase, the nation’s largest bank, closed the accounts of groups who hold mainstream conservative views. We’re committed to stopping the dangerous trend of banks becoming new weapons of cancel culture," according to Viewpoint Diversity Score.

Ideology isn’t the only potential reason Christians may find conflict with major banks. Ethical misconduct is a source of increasing concern as believers strive for Biblical stewardship in their finances.

A CNN Business article, Are you owed a slice of the $100 million fine Bank of America has to pay? cites an example of unethical conduct happening in the banking system. The article states that Bank of America was recently, "fined $250 million by the US federal regulators for allegedly harming customers by double-dipping on fees, withholding credit card rewards, and opening fake accounts. Of those fines, $100 million is set to go directly to consumers who were impacted by the bank’s alleged wrongdoing."

Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel and Senior Vice President of Corporate Engagement Jeremy Tedesco recently said on Fox News, “Banks can no longer get away with this.”

The Data

But are Christians truly serious about switching banks due to their Christian values? At Christian Community Credit Union, we recently surveyed over 1,300 professed Christians and found that over 30% had considered switching banks in the past 12 months. A conflict with their faith values was among the top 3 reasons why those surveyed had considered making the switch. Over 66% of those considering switching were excited or curious about banking with a Christian institution. Furthermore, over 50% expressed that it’s now more important than ever for their bank to reflect and support their Christian values.

The Challenge

Although there is certainly a tension among Christians of wanting to align one’s faith with their banking institution, Christians simply don’t know an alternative! This is why we, at Christian Community Credit Union (CCCU) are boldly informing Christians of another option. At CCCU you will find competitive rates, fees, and loans from a bank that is unapologetically Christian, guided by Scripture, invests in Biblical causes, and is member-driven. So where does one begin to discern if an exodus is appropriate for them or not? Here is what we encourage each believer to do:

1.       Remember we are stewards (1 Cor. 4:2): We must never forget to recognize that everything we have is a gift from God. We manage His resources by following His principles for His purposes, and this includes our finances.

2.       Assess your bank: As a steward, take time to ask and research. Does your bank conduct itself in a way that is God-honoring? Does it invest your funds into causes that align with your faith? Does it value you and your Christian values? Does it treat Christians with dignity and respect? Not all Christians will find a reason to feel tension with their bank. As a result, many will have peace about their banking institution, which is wonderful. However, some may find answers to these questions troublesome, and thus, find the need to begin an exodus to a new home for their banking. 

3.       Discern and pray (James 1:5, 1 John 5:14):   Should you feel unease about your banking institution, take time to seek the Lord for wisdom. With His guidance you will find how to best steward and honor him more with your financial resources, investments, and trusted partners.

Conclusion

Just as we have seen with other consumer decisions, we believe a big bank exodus is just getting started. While it may not be applicable to all Christians, initial research shows that 30% are looking for a new financial home where their faith values are not only supported and respected, but their resources are also used to honor God more fully. Regardless of what you choose and why, may we all strive to be biblical stewards of God’s resources.

About Christian Community Credit Union

Christian Community Credit Union (CCCU) is a faith-based, purpose-driven financial cooperative whose mission is to serve Christ's followers to live and give more abundantly. For over 66 years, CCCU has provided individuals and ministries with the financial tools and knowledge they need to grow and thrive financially, so they can transform our world through their generosity.

Learn more, become a member, and make the switch to CCCU today by clicking here.





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