This post is part of the Real Money Moves series: actions everyday people can take to lớn align their money và values.Follow

Most people have been taught the virtues of saving for a rainy day. But want khổng lồ hear something crazy? When you put money in the bank nowadays, you usually lose money.

Wait a minute, how does that work? The problem is that when interest rates — what the ngân hàng pays you in exchange for making a deposit — is lower than inflation — the rate at which money loses value — that means your money is actually worth LESS in the future than it is now.

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So it’s not that you put in $100 and get out $98… but that the $100 you worked so hard to lớn save can only can buy $98 worth of stuff, what the economists hotline your purchasing power. That’s why investors talk about “beating inflation” — interest rates & inflation are in a race lớn make you money, & steal your purchasing power. You’re Superman và ready lớn fly, but inflation is the kryptonite dragging you down. And right now, inflation is winning at 2.1% for 2018 so far versus the average mainstream bank 3 month CD which pays as little as .02%.

That doesn’t mean saving is bad — its still how we get enough money together for important things in life like weddings, a first home, or a family emergency. & putting money in the bank is, needless to lớn say, a lot safer than keeping it under the mattress.

So where can you get a better interest rate — a stronger sword in the battle against inflation — và still keep your money safe?

You might be surprised khổng lồ find out that the world of social investing has some pretty great options available.

For instance, CNote is a newer company that allows you to lớn put away your money & receive a 2.5% annual return — up to 20 times more than mainstream banks, with the same liquidity as a 3-month CD!

Investment Options with Short-Term Liquidity


As we explored in Breaking up is Hard to lớn Do: How khổng lồ Leave Your Big Name ngân hàng the other major advantage of something like CNote is that you get lớn know, & be proud of, where your money spends the night — supporting low-income housing, businesses led by women và people of color, and other socially positive concepts — rather than, for instance, investing in the private prisons profiting from family detention & mass incarceration.

Other products out there with comparable financial return include those like Calvert Notes that allow you choose what geography you care about, media Development Investment Notes that allow you to support independent truyền thông media in newly democratizing countries, & New Hampshire Community Loan Fund that helps people in thiết bị di động homes buy the land underneath them. Unlike banks, these organizations generally interface with the public virtually rather than having to go into a branch — you can sign up on their websites, or just điện thoại tư vấn them up for more information on where to lớn send a check.

Just make sure to kiểm tra carefully how long they plan on keeping your money — called “tenor” or a “lock-up“ period — as they basically keep your money under lock and key & won’t give it back to lớn you without asking you lớn pay a penalty. But if you’re really committed to saving for something special, just like your mom kept your piggy ngân hàng key, this can be a great way lớn make sure you don’t spend your wedding money before the actual wedding!

There’s one important distinction lớn understand as you look at impact investing options for your savings — unless you get a CD at a community bank, the options listed above are not FDIC insured —meaning the government is not insuring your deposits. Instead, typically donors have provided resources that are used as what they call “first loss” — that money would be used to support any losses before the average investor would ever đại bại money. That’s why the organizations mentioned above — and all but CNote have been around for over 15 years — have NEVER lost a single cent of investor money.

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So if you really don’t like money and want less of it…keep it in the bank.

Otherwise… maybe it’s time to kiểm tra out social investing.

For more information on social investing strategies, check out

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Disclosures related khổng lồ my workhere.

Disclaimer: Taking a dose of her own medicine, the tác giả keeps some savings with the truyền thông Development Investment Fund. She, nor anyone else, receives compensation their being listed here, & in general, any information provided is solely as financial education — it is neither a recommendation nor an offer of securities. As always ask your advisor what is right for you.


I am an investor và activist who has been building bridges between finance và social justice for close to lớn twenty years. In that time, I"ve influenced over $150 Billion & helped thousands of people learn how to lớn align their money with their values. My book, Real Impact: The New Economics of Social Change offers guidance on creating real, systemic change in the world & has been featured everywhere from Harvard Business School khổng lồ the United Nations. I currently serve as Founding Partner of Candide Group, a Registered Investment Advisor in Oakland, CA. I"m also an adjunct professor at Middlebury College"s graduate program, an avid dancer và a Swarthmore alumna. Learn more and contact me at,or showroom me on social media: