The vast amount of money paid to Wall Street by America’s cities, counties, and states has profound impacts on our lives and local economies. Most citizens don’t know about it – they just pay it. It’s a staggering amount: Over $1 trillion moves from taxpayer pockets into private Wall Street hands each year in the form of interest payments on bonds, loans, fees, and financial product costs which have caused:

  • School closures
  • Lost jobs
  • Life-long student debt
  • Reduced public services and infrastructure
  • Privatized public assets, and
  • Stymied local businesses who can’t get affordable funding to grow.

Wall Street extractions from the public purse seriously hurt America’s strength and in just a few years will consume one-third of our economy’s production in interest payments.



In an exclusive initiative by the Public Banking Institute, What Wall Street Costs America begins a national conversation about the urgent need to break free of our reliance on the costly private financing of public investment. The debt load is squashing local economies, ruining our school systems, letting our infrastructure crumble, and so much more. Once people learn these facts and discover the alternatives, we can move toward public finance of our public needs without Wall Street usury.

What Wall Street Costs America will provide the ONLY aggregated look at our local and national debt costs through an interactive map with data figures and human stories of what Wall Street has really cost America. This project lays out the facts so that citizens can act. Breaking our dependence on Wall Street usury means reclaiming control of our money through publicly-owned, public-interest banks. Join us in taking a stand together. 


• Unify citizen action across citizen groups to stand united against Wall Street abuse at the local level
Create supportive educational webinars to help local efforts
Host a central campaign website offering geographical data displays and narratives that tell the true stories of how Wall Street extractions have punished our nation’s people and economy
Create new media content and videos to educate and inspire citizen knowledge and action
Provide direct support for citizens to start new public banks that serve the public interest where they live
Create strategic collaborations for action across groups such as social and economic justice, local business, tax relief, education, labor, and many more to start actually changing the system 


EllenRedQuote.pngThis is a project for everyone--and we need people from every city, town, county, and state to share their knowledge and resources to paint the largest collective picture ever painted of America's wealth transfer to Wall Street. You can:




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