We’re proud to announce the launch of fortú, the first culturally contextual digital bank account* for Latinos and Hispanics in the U.S.
Latinos are the youngest and numerically fastest growing demographic in the United States. With each day that passes, Latino contributions to American society are increasingly visible in our culture, food, language, music, sports, politics, the arts, etc.
Despite increasing influence in American society, Latinos remain among the most underserved by our financial institutions. The U.S. Federal Reserve finds that 32% of Hispanic-Americans are either unbanked or underbanked vs. only 14% of Non-Hispanic Whites**. Furthermore, according to Bankrate, Hispanics with bank accounts pay the highest average monthly fees of any demographic group in the U.S.*** This banking disparity is both unhealthy and unacceptable. Having a safe, reliable, and convenient way to save, spend, and manage money is foundational to the “American Dream.” At fortú our goal is to eliminate Latino banking disparity by building world class, culturally contextual, digital banking for Latinos.
Why culturally contextual?
Banking disparity is not unique to Latinos and is unfortunately experienced by many minority and/or immigrant communities. Anytime a community is poorly served by the banking system this is a social failure. The reasons for failure are varied and can sometimes appear similar but are not necessarily the same across communities.
We believe that Latinos are a culturally distinct community based on unique and shared traits like language, countries of family origin, household patterns, history, religion, etc. A failure to effectively recognize this unique cultural context is a major obstacle preventing most banks from adequately serving Latinos.
Our team is a group of first and second-generation immigrant Americans with family origins and personal ties across the Latino and Hispanic world (U.S., Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, etc.) We ourselves, our friends, and our families have all experienced the challenges and frustration of dealing with banks that don’t truly understand us. Thanks to modern technologies, this is now a solvable problem, and our mission to develop better banking built for tú.