Learn how Bank of America is driving Responsible Growth

Bank of America has transformed into a simpler, more efficient company focused on growing the real economy in a way that creates tangible value for our business, our clients and the communities we serve.

Through our strategy of responsible growth, we are driving the economy in sustainable ways—helping to create jobs, develop communities, foster economic mobility and address society’s biggest challenges around the world—while managing risk and providing a return to our clients and our business.

Responsible growth means investing in:

Our Business

We’re focused on advancing the projects and issues that contribute to real economic growth and mobility—whether that’s supporting the small businesses that are essential to the well-being of local communities or large projects that create jobs and drive the economy. Bank of America’s clients and investors increasingly expect our values to align closely with our business practices.

To help us continue to grow responsibly, Bank of America has established internal governance policies to improve transparency in our products and business practices, while helping clients access the capital they need to achieve their goals. Whether it is helping a family buy their first home and invest for the future or helping companies access the resources they need to grow their business Bank of America is implementing responsible growth on a truly global scale.

Here’s how we’ve grown responsibly by investing in our business:

  • We’ve made financial education and empowerment a priority because we believe in giving families all the tools they need to make confident financial decisions. Through our partnership with non-profit Khan Academy, we’ve developed Better Money Habits® – a free online financial education resource that pairs Khan Academy’s expertise in online learning with the financial know-how of Bank of America to deliver simple, easy to understand information on a wide range of personal finance topics.
  • We’ve become a leader in one of the world’s fastest growing sectors, clean energy financing, through our $125 billion environmental business initiative and underwriting green bonds. Since 2007, we have provided more than $87 billion in financing for low-carbon activities like energy efficiency and sustainable transportation projects.

Read more about how we’ve strengthened our culture and increased transparency in Our Business Practices.

Our People

Bank of America employs approximately 208,000 people around the world to support clients in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and more than 35 countries. Every day, it is our teammates who are most directly responsible for driving responsible growth. They are focused on deepening relationships with our clients who view Bank of America as a committed and invested partner in their success.

We are investing in our employees to help them be successful both at home and in the workplace. We believe employees who feel valued and empowered at work deliver better for the individuals and companies we serve.

At Bank of America, our diverse workforce and inclusive workplace is a source of strength. Our employees bring a wide range of experiences and perspectives, helping us better connect with our clients. By contributing to shared, lasting success for both our employees and our clients, we help ensure the next generation is defined by a thriving and capable workforce, ready to drive continued growth in a rapidly changing economy.

Here are some of the ways we’ve grown responsibly by investing in our people:

  • Diversity and inclusion: Our commitment to diversity and inclusion helps make our company a great place to work. The diversity of our employees—in thought, style, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture and experience—makes us stronger, and is essential to our ability to serve our clients, fulfill our purpose and drive responsible growth. More than 50 percent of our global workforce is female and more than 40 percent of our U.S.-based workforce is from a racially or ethnically diverse background. We have also embraced opportunities to have courageous conversations that are helping to create more empathy, understanding, and awareness around differences including on LGBT rights, race and gender.
  • Increasing our minimum wage: We continue to be a leader in our industry for adopting a minimum rate of pay higher than legally required. We have made regular increases for the past several years, and in early 2017 we raised it to $15 per hour, and employees in many of our markets are above this minimum.
  • Support for parents and caregivers: We offer 16 weeks of paid parental leaves – including maternity, paternity and adoptive – for all U.S. employees working 20 or more hours per week to bond with a new child. Parents also have the flexibility to plan their leave when it works best for their family within the first 12 months after the child arrives. We also offer benefits and programs such as adoption reimbursement, back-up care, child care reimbursement and elder care.
  • Managing healthcare costs: In 2011, we reduced annual medical premiums for family coverage by 50% for employees below the median household income level—and we've kept those premiums flat for the past six years. And for employees with income up to $100,000 per year, we've limited premium increases to about one-third of the national trend.
  • Supporting employees in the moments that matter: Our Life Event Services team provides support to employees through major life events such as taking a leave of absence, retiring from the company, losing a loved one, facing terminal illness, or being impacted by domestic violence.
  • Extended bereavement policy: In October 2017, we adopted an extended bereavement policy of up to 20 days paid time for the loss of a spouse/partner or child.

Our Communities

Responsible growth means Bank of America must take an active role in strengthening local economies. But our role extends beyond simply taking care of our clients’ financial needs. It is also about addressing the challenges of our time – such as economic mobility, access to capital and environmental sustainability.

As an example, we've worked to create innovative capital deployment by partnering with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). CDFIs are designed to create a bridge between banks like ours, and individuals or small businesses that might otherwise have a hard time getting a loan.

Bank of America invests over $1.5 billion in more than 260 CDFIs in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia to finance affordable housing, small businesses, and other economic development programs, supporting individuals and communities who may not qualify for traditional loan products. In doing so, we’re able to stay within our risk framework while bringing new participants into the economy. That is the definition of responsible growth.

As we help these small businesses and individuals gain access to capital and participate more regularly in the economy, we can also create jobs in communities that have been hardest hit by the financial crisis and the cycle of incarceration. Whether it is helping at-risk youth or connecting teens to summer jobs, Bank of America has been a leader in creating a more inclusive economy. This isn’t just the right thing to do, but it’s also an important part of our business.

Here’s how we’ve grown responsibly by creating opportunity for economic mobility and advancement in our communities:

  • We have deployed more than $35 million in affordable loans to more than 1,700 women entrepreneurs to grow their businesses across the U.S. These loans are administered through Community Development Financial Institutions in each of the program’s markets.
  • We are supporting women’s economic empowerment through partnerships with Vital Voices in the Global Ambassadors Program, Cherie Blair Foundation, and Kiva to help bring mentoring, training, and funding to women around the world. Our partnerships with these organizations have allowed us to help 7,000 women from 80+ countries grow their businesses in their communities.
  • Community Development Banking uses a wide variety of financing solutions to help provide affordable housing, improve education, and create jobs, thereby helping local communities thrive. In 2017, Bank of America helped to create 13,500 housing units, including 1,688 units of affordable housing, for individuals, families, veterans, seniors and the previously homeless.
  • We are delivering on our $40 million commitment over three years (2016-2019) to connect youth and young adults to skills, training and jobs, and are partnering with organizations such as Year Up, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Urban Alliance, and Ada, the National College for Digital Skills.
  • Through our Supplier Diversity program, we are supporting the growth of diverse businesses through our vendor relationships with minorities, individuals with disabilities, businesses owned by veterans and the LGBT community. In 2017, the National Minority Supplier Development Council presented Bank of America with a Corporation of the Year – Financial Award for our commitment to supplier diversity and minority supplier development.
  • In addition, to help address the challenges facing at-risk youth, Bank of America will continue to partner with local mayors across the country to fund paid summer jobs for at-risk teens through the Consumer Bank’s summer jobs program. This effort empowers youth in major metropolitan areas through on-the-job training in financial centers and mentoring from financial center managers.
  • In partnership with Social Finance, Inc., Bank of America raised $13.5 million in investor capital for a 5.5 year Pay-for-Success social impact investment. Center for Employment Opportunities is delivering programs in New York State to formerly incarcerated individuals with the goal of reducing prisoner recidivism and increasing employment. Payments to investors are paid by New York State based on the success of the program.

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