Banking on Youth/lack of Financial Training Causes Poor Money Management

Article excerpt

Barry Minklow started his own business when he was 15 years old. It was a carpet cleaning service in Reseda, Calif. He had to be driven to his jobs because he was too young to have a driver's license.

And when his business started growing and he needed a loan, he found out he was too young to do business with a bank.

Barry Minklow says he was turned down by 50 banks when he asked for a commercial checking account. What he requested was not a loan, mind you, but a business checking account.

Finally, Barry was able to gain the confidence and respect of Robert Turnbow, regional vice president at Sterling Bank in nearby town, who set up the account before learning that Barry was only 15. But through a mutual agreement to work closely together, Turnbow helped Barry manage the account and in fact lent him $15,000.

Today, Barry Minklow is 20 years old and a millionaire. His company, ZZZ Best Co., employs nearly 800 people, and Barry expects it to turn a $40 million profit. Barry expressed his gratitude for Turnbow's faith and help by rolling over a $1 million CD earlier this year.

Let's face it, kids get discriminated against all the time. Lots of folks don't take them seriously, but I think it's a mistake. Give a kid a responsibility and see if they can handle it.

Oh, they might need a little help or guidance, but just because they're smaller, or younger, or less experienced, doesn't mean they're incompetent. Besides, competence is learned. You don't get it with your blue eyes when you're born.

At least one person agrees with me when it comes to financial matters. He's Bill Daniels, and he's opening The Kids Bank in Denver this summer.

Daniels has a vision few bankers share - probably because he comes from the cable television industry. …

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