Financial Literacy Through Hip-Hop Music | Culture Meets Money with Ash Cash Exantus
- Culture Meets Money guest Ash Cash Exantus brings inclusive representation to Black communities through financial literacy and hip-hop music.
- Financial education can be difficult to teach, especially to those stuck in the same generational cycle and mindset.
- For Ash Cash Exantus, hip-hop has been a great equalizer in teaching financial literacy.
CapWay’s Culture Meets Money live chat series features Ash Cash Exantus, who speaks about teaching others about financial education through hip-hop music.
Ash Exantus, better known as Ash Cash, is a bestselling author, financial literacy, and personal finance expert. Exantus has been featured in publications like Black Enterprise and popular podcasts such as Earn Your Leisure. He is also recognized as one of the top financial educators of this generation.
As the youngest child in his single-parent home, Exantus had to hustle from a young age. By 19, he worked as a bank teller and quickly moved up the corporate ladder. As a bank teller, he learned firsthand about his community's banking inequalities. In addition, he also realized that many of his clients were not able to achieve financial freedom due to a lack of access to financial education.
Exantus eventually left the banking industry to follow his own path and become a full-time financial educator. He has transformed many lives through financial literacy and by teaching finances through hip-hop music. He has written several books about financial literacy and how it connects to artists who consistently teach about business and money like Jay-Z and Nipsey Hussle.
Throughout the Culture Meets Money live chat, Exantus shared how he has helped people learn financial literacy through hip-hop music, why financial education is important, and his journey into the financial education space. Below are three key takeaways from his chat.
Representation in Our Communities
Representation matters, especially in communities of color. As Exantus states in his chat, many of the businesses forming in our communities do not reflect the community’s people. However, Exantus wanted his community to maximize its full potential and gain knowledge that would ultimately help them break the cycle of generational poverty.
Due to Exantus’ experience in banking, he realized that businesses such as financial institutions lack proper representation. This is why Exantus decided to open a credit union in his neighborhood. Exantus' decision to open a credit union made him one of the youngest federally accredited credit union CEOs. In addition, by owning his own credit union in his community, the members of his community were able to trust and rely on that financial institution.
Economic Disparities Within Financial Services
Another reason for opening his own credit union was because he was tired of seeing people get taken advantage of. He noticed that the people who were getting charged the most fees were those who didn’t have any money to pay the fees.
Exantus realized that there was a significant problem with traditional banking systems. For example, he discovered that those with higher account balances were getting their overdraft fees waived. Moreover, those who might have a one-time financial mistake and accidentally overdraft their accounts by two dollars would be charged $30 or more in overdraft fees.
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For Exantus, it was difficult seeing members of his community struggle financially. So, he made financial literacy accessible by building his own platform and sharing his financial education knowledge with the masses.
Financial Education & Hip-Hop
Exantus noticed that financial education was difficult to introduce and integrate into people’s lives because it was a taboo topic that people were unfamiliar with. Additionally, with financial education lacking in schools and not being taught at home, it was more challenging to teach necessary financial concepts to people later in life.
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Exantus soon realized that hip-hop would be a great equalizer in teaching financial literacy because most people will listen to their favorite rapper. His reasoning for teaching finances through hip-hop is “putting the medicine in the candy” for people.
He wanted to be effective by teaching people at their level of financial understanding. Connecting hip-hop music to money helped Exantus provide financial literacy for many people, allowing them to live their best lives while being fiscally responsible.
Download the CapWay mobile app and subscribe to CapWay’s The Money Room to watch the full Culture Meets Money video with Ash Cash Exantus.