Develop a long-term financial plan. Isaac H. Green, who runs Durham, North Carolina-based Piedmont Investment Advisors L.L.C. (No. 8 on the BE ASSET MANAGERS listÂ with $3.4 billion in assets under management) also believes that the United States will not default on its obligations and if its credit rating is downgraded then “meaningful budgetary reform takes place along with a structured approach to long-term deficit reduction, the AAA rating can be restored.”Â He maintains African Americans can actually make positive gains by expanding income streams and maximizing their savings and investments over the long haul: A downgrade would likely have a muted impact. Â There is already complete transparency with regard to the financial condition of the United States and a change in credit rating does not change this condition. The initial impact of higher rates would depress the value of most real and financial assets. Over time, it could serve to reduce the wealth gap because those who have less will likely lose less especially if financial assets are impacted more than real assets as seems likely to us and [secondly,] a higher interest rate environment will likely yield more attractive returns over time if African Americans can continue to close the income gap and also reduce the savings gap then this community’s ability to build wealth may be enhanced.