Ethnobanking in the USA: from antidiscrimination vehicles to transnational entities

Gary Dymski, Wei Li, Carolyn Aldana, Hyeon Hyo Ahn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


This paper addresses a meta-question: Does ethnic banking matter as a social-economic phenomenon? It discusses the roles of banks in immigrant- and minority-community building and their connections to the USA ‘new migration’ with our definition of ethnic banks while comparing and contrasting the differential trajectories of ethnobanking development using Los Angeles as a primary case study. Evidence suggests that ethnic banks may represent important, independent and long-term determinants of ethnic communities’ growth and prosperity (or failure to grow and prosper). Banks owned by racial-ethnic minorities usually flaunt banking industry trends in one or more ways – by retaining both ‘relationship banking’ and branches as offices for delivery of services, by focusing on culturally specific growth rather than ‘plain-vanilla’ growth, by making loans for purposes and to customers that have been written off by non-ethnic banks and so on. They often target different categories of ethnic customers differently, in ways that differ from the conventions of mainstream banking.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-191
Number of pages29
JournalInternational Journal of Business and Globalisation
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2010


  • African American
  • Chinese American
  • Korean American
  • Latino
  • Los Angeles
  • branch network
  • ethnobanks
  • financial exclusion
  • immigrant
  • minority

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)


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