With federal regulators becoming more receptive to large deals, bank merger approvals have sped up under the Trump administration. Although the anticipated merger activity volume has slowed relative to early 2019 projections, the fact remains that attention to detail in the execution of these combinations has never been more important.
International banks are rapidly evolving to cater to the digital world. With pen and paper signatures nearly obsolete, banks are investing in electronic signatures as a more secure, trustworthy replacement. But questions remain: How secure are the systems that consumers and businesses use and what happens if a transaction is disputed?
Most headlines around fintech disruption focus on consumer-facing services, such as digital mobile only banking or money transfer services. Consumer services, after all, resonate with the public—it’s easier to tell a story about a new peer-to-peer money transfer service with consumer branding than a better way to do SME lending.
Banks exist to serve the financial needs of consumers, through whatever avenue works best. With the rapid evolution of technology, more tools and resources are available than ever before to determine and meet those needs. Personalization in banking works when the customer is the focus, but without customer-centricity as their anchor, banks drift from what really matters. What steps can banks take to stay focused in today’s changing financial environment?
Everyone recognizes the benefits of going digital these days, especially governments seeking to advance their economies. The value of any national economy hinges on its assets, and a digital economy has its own assets that are distinct from those of traditional economies. These digital assets joined together within a thriving ecosystem are intrinsic to the formation of a truly inclusive digital economy.
Trade finance fuels trade; if firms are unable to access it, this can have significant consequences for business development and global commerce. The current US$1.5 trillion gap between the demand for and supply of trade finance is undeniably a substantial barrier to economic growth. A recent BNY Mellon survey canvassed industry participants to discover what steps they think should be taken to close the gap, and the results point to two potential sources of relief: technology and regulatory revision.
Artificial intelligence is infiltrating almost every industry, including banking, and automating tasks in ways that outperform humans. But is this cause for nail-biting or rejoicing? A lot depends on how intelligently artificial intelligence is first viewed and then put to work by humans. Banks worldwide, such as Alawwal bank in Saudi Arabia, are proving that this powerful technology, if exploited smartly, will be transformational for banks and customers alike.
A recent report by Access to Cash has suggested that cash transactions could fall to just 10% of all payments within the next 15 years. This is not very surprising given thatlast year, debit cards officially overtook notes and coins as the UK’s most popular form of payment.
There has been a rapid increase in the size and number of investments into UK fintechs with the likes of Monzo and Revolut leading the charge. Interestingly, it is not just the VC funds driving this; banks are also investing or in many cases, acquiring fintech companies outright.
It’s now pretty much universally acknowledged that the UK retail banking market is being disrupted by new, digital-first competitors – the so-called ‘direct’ banks. The narrative is that these agile upstarts are stealing customers away from incumbents by offering compelling new services and unprecedented levels of convenience.