[Excerpted from From DBusiness Magazine]: It might surprise regular viewers of the popular Hardcore Pawn on truTV, but when Seth Gold was growing up, we wasn’t keen about what his dad did for a living … but he wanted to promote greater understanding of how the industry works. For starters, he says, the business is a financial institution. It’s about making loans, not buying jewelry, vehicles, or equipment.
“When you break it down, there are 25 million people in the US who don’t have access to the traditional banking system,” Gold says. “What I want to do is inform them about what their options are to make ends meet.”
Read the full article in the September/October edition of DBusiness magazine, on newsstands now.
DBusiness magazine has named 30 of Detroit’s most dynamic business leaders to their annual 30 in Their Thirties list. American Jewelry and Loan is proud to announce that Seth Gold is a member of the class of 2017.
Wigs 4 Kids is excited to announce that Les & Seth Gold from American Jewelry and Loan will be the Honorary Chairs at their 14th Annual Gala on Saturday, September 9, 2017! The Golds generously sponsor our money booth, donate an assortment of raffle prizes and take photos with our guests. We are fortunate to have their ongoing love & support of Wigs 4 Kids! Don’t miss out on your chance to meet them and help a great cause – tickets to our signature event are available at www.wigsforkids.org
On Friday, June 16th, Big Brothers Big Sisters hosted The Great Big Auction, presented by Hour Detroit, the number one city magazine in the country; hosted by Chuck Bennett, style guru and lifestyle columnist for the Detroit News; and, Rick Hampson, President, Citizens Bank in Michigan. Les Gold served as the Celebrity Auctioneer.
During the event, guests bid on once-in-a-lifetime, experiential auction packages secured by the auction warriors. To learn more about their mission, visit www.bbbsdetroit.org.
Les and Seth with Margaret Trimmer-Hartley from Junior Achievement at #MPC17
[From Detroit Regional Chamber’sTo-Do List 2016 Final Report]: After meeting at the Mackinac Policy Conference last year, American Jewelry and Loan, Junior Achievement, Operation HOPE, and Greenpath Financial Wellness collaborated and developed a partnership that offers workshops on improving credit scores and other financial wellness tips.
Click HERE to learn more about our Financial Literacy Workshops.
[From The Detroit News]: Jeannine Gant, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metropolitan Detroit, is bursting with excitement in anticipation of the Great Big Auction, a new, high-energy fundraising event that features a chance to bid on once-in-a-lifetime, experiential live auction packages. Gant and her crew gathered 20 local movers and shakers and proclaimed them auction warriors. Each warrior taps into their personal and professional resources to create an exceptional live auction package. The Great Big Auction, which takes place on June 16 at the Sound Board at Motor City Casino, is presented by Hour Magazine and chaired by Rick Hampson, president of Citizens Bank. Les Gold from American Jewelry and Loan will be auctioneer, Fox 2’s Maurielle Lue will be mistress of ceremonies and this columnist will serve as host. Auction items include things such as a trip to New York with floor seats to see Billy Joel; a stay at a five-bedroom villa in St. Martin; a private party at M1 Concourse; and a white-glove-service, seven-course gourmet meal served with Celani wines in a private dining room on the water. The warriors include Paul Glantz, Reginald Hartsfield, Denise Brooks Williams, Tanisha Sanders and Greg Grabowski. The event includes great food, craft cocktails, music and a silent auction. General admission tickets are $75. For tickets or information, visit bbbs2017.gesture.com.
American Jewelry & Loan was proud to host a successful Financial Literacy Course at their Pontiac store. AJL founder and president Les Gold moderated a panel of financial experts that included representatives from Junior Achievement, Operation Hope, and Greenpath Financial Wellness. Attendees were treated to an expert overview of many topics related to personal finance, including what information is considered when determining your credit score, ways to build and maintain that score, as well as various alternative lending options they might consider.
“It’s very important to be well informed on personal finance matters,” said Gold. “Thanks to our partners, everyone who attended our financial literacy course is aware of the different options available to them and can begin making smart decisions about managing their money.”
In October 2016, American Jewelry and Loan was proud to host a Financial Literacy workshop that’s the first of its kind in the nation. In partnership with Junior Achievement, Operation Hope, and Greenpath Financial Wellness, the aim was to help people understand how to make smart decisions about money. The response was overwhelmingly positive.
Now, a new workshop date and location is being announced. On Tuesday, May 16th, 2017, American Jewelry and Loan will host a Financial Literacy workshop for Alternative Lending customers from 5-7 pm at their Pontiac Location. That store is located at 546 North Telegraph Road in Pontiac. (Click HERE to RSVP)
The workshop will teach attendees “good habits that build good lives,” said Margaret Trimer-Hartley, President and CEO of Junior Achievement of Michigan, which is one of the groups hosting the workshop.
“We’re trying to just raise awareness,” she said, and “we’re doing it at an earlier age.”
Trimer-Hartley said financial literacy can be taught through explaining investment strategies as simple as opening a savings or checking account.
Without a bank account, households are often left with no choice but to turn to check-cashing services and other non-traditional methods to make transactions most Americans see as routine. Others often take loans that dive-bomb their credit scores because the terms of the loans aren’t often clear or easy to understand.
The workshop aims to mitigate some of those problems.
American Jewelry and Loan and its partners hope to bridge a gap he sees between his customers and people who turn to banks for loans. “My customers don’t have access to the traditional banking system,” he said. “Our customers deserve the same opportunities as everybody else … An informed customer is a better customer.”
His family has had a pawn shop in Detroit since the 1940s. Gold said the workshop stems from conversations he had with the Detroit Chamber of Commerce at the Mackinac Policy Conference over the summer, where financial literacy was often talked about.
He intends to define the difference between a loan from a pawn shop and loans from banks and other agencies that, if not paid back, can damage someone’s credit.
Trimer-Hartley said the workshop will touch on investment options, teach the importance of saving for retirement, of health insurance, and will help attendees understand the difference between renting and buying homes and the importance of good credit.
Having a checking or savings account is considered a cornerstone of financial stability in the U.S. Without one, households must rely on check-cashing services, prepaid debit cards and other costly ways to pay bills and make routine transactions. But the situation is improving: For every 10 households that were unbanked in 2013, one of those households is now banked.
While the gains were modest, the results of the survey from the FDIC offered an encouraging sign. The FDIC report was the most recent piece of data showing that the economic recovery is beginning to positively affect those at the bottom.
The improving economy likely had some effect on why more Americans opened bank accounts. Not only did more Americans making less than $15,000 open bank accounts between 2013 and 2015, but the number of Americans making less than $15,000 also declined.
“The poor have more money in their pockets, and more are able to afford bank accounts,” said Aaron Klein, a fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution.
There are several reasons why people choose not to have a traditional bank account. Some do not trust banks or want to avoid their fees, or they have privacy concerns, according to the FDIC’s report. There is also a perception among the unbanked that bank accounts are not for the poor. More than half of unbanked households said they believe banks are “not at all interested” in serving households like theirs, the report said.
But the No. 1 reason why Americans say they do not have a checking or savings account is that they believe they do not have enough money to get an account. The FDIC said roughly 57 percent of all unbanked households cited lack of money as a reason not to have an account, and roughly 38 percent of those same people said that was the main reason.
[Originally posted at the WordSmith blog] If you’ve been on a shopping trip to New York City, no doubt institutions like Bergdorf’s, Bloomindale’s and Barneys ring a bell. We are at none of those places; we’re not even in the same borough. Instead, we’re at a pawnshop in Queens and the 28-year-old woman oohing and ahhing over the accessories not only selected many of the items for sale in this store (EZ Pawn at 42-27th Street in Long Island City), she’s part of a 14-store NYC pawn empire founded by her father, David Kaminsky. Also, her name is Gold Girl – well, by reputation, at least.
Lauren Kaminsky Goldman (aka ‘Gold Girl’) is the woman responsible for making pawnshops cool, chic even, and Beauty & Essex – the restaurant, bar and nightclub with retro appeal – is the place where it happened. Back when the Manhattan eatery opened in 2010, it got noticed for two reasons: 1) they serve free champagne in the ladies’ bathroom (hard not to notice that) and 2) patrons enter through a fully functioning pawnshop with vintage guitars, vinyl and jewellery that’s often displayed on Barbie and Biggie Smalls dolls.
Goldman started stocking the shop at Beauty & Essex in spring 2011, creating an environment and aesthetic that would distance her operation from the traditionally seedy stereotypes of pawnshops. Then, when the restaurant launched a location in Las Vegas last year, Goldman once again brought the vintage baubles. Now, with a Beauty & Essex opening in Los Angeles next month (in addition to a Hollywood outpost of Tao, which is owned by the same company), the pawn princess will bring her curatorial prowess to the West Coast.
AJL was opened in 1978, and has since become one of the largest and most recognized pawn shops in the world. It is the setting of the record-breaking reality show, Hardcore Pawn, but remains a dedicated, full-service pawn shop for the Metro Detroit area and beyond.