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The Finanser’s Week: 9th June – 15th June 2014

 Our biggest stories of the past week are …

The threat to banks is not Google or Amazon but …

What amazes me about the banking system is that the banking system does not believe it needs to change.  It does not believe it is being disrupted by technology.  It is dismissive of many new start-ups and innovators. And it points to past performance for the reasons why.

Bankers are cavemen or cool? #ebaday

I've just attended EBAday for the first time in a few years, and it's an interesting conference.  Like a mini-SIBOS for Europe, the major focus is on regulations, specifically the Payment Services Directive II, and the bank's response.

2014: let the good times roll

It is interesting to hear the non-stop debate about the UK housing market bubble (and it is a bubble); the settling of the European markets after the sovereign debt crisis; the burgeoning US economy that is getting back to normal superpower status; whilst China will be the #1 economy by 2018; and other bullish market statements. Here are some basic facts:

Is happiness and income equality related to each other?

Bearing in mind that we have Financial Services Club Nordic Region, as I left the Stockholm meeting last week I picked up a fascinating book at the airport about the Nordic countries. Called The Almost Nearly Perfect People by Michael Booth, it caught my attention with facts like Denmark actually has brothels with animals (seven percent of Danish men apparently have had sex with an animal) and is the happiest country on Earth (are these two facts related to each other?).

How many m-wallets and other payment innovations …

We had a very succesfful third meeting of the Financial Services Club Nordic Region in Stockholm the other night  (checkout what happened at the first and second meetings if of interest).

The focus was upon innovation and, specifically, innovation in payments with presentations from:

  • Lazaro Campos, former CEO, SWIFT;
  • Richard Jones, Head of Industry Business Development, VocaLink (UK); and
  • Christina Friberg, Marketing Director with Bankgirot.

 

The major general news stories of the past week include …    

‘Cancel £50bn of national debt to aid the recovery,’ says ex-FSA boss Lord Turner of Ecchinswell – The Independent
A senior and respected figure in the world of financial regulation has called on the Coalition to unilaterally cancel some of the country’s national debt in order to help rebalance the recovery.

Tesco enters current account market – The Independent
Tesco has hit out at the “ridiculously poor value” offered by rivals as it today enters the current account market as it attempts to breed loyalty among its customer base.

Tesco and TSB take on a massive challenge – The Telegraph
It will take many years for the emergence of challenger banks to have a noticeable effect

Staff in Harlesden bank ‘watched customer being beaten up’ claim – Brent & Kilburn Times
A bank customer has accused cashiers of failing to come to his aid while he was savagely beaten up inside a branch of Santander in Harlesden.

England will win 2014 World Cup, says Germany's biggest bank – The Guardian
England's World Cup team 'is among the best teams according to our static model', Deutsche Bank claims

Tesco Bank current account: is it any good? – The Telegraph
Supermarket giant Tesco has launched its long-awaited current account in a bid to lure customers away from the big high street banks.

Branson backs money transfer start-up – Financial Times
Boost for the financial technology sector as investment in start-ups reaches global highs not seen since the dotcom boom

As bank fines soar, U.S. threatened $16 billion BNP penalty – Reuters
U.S. authorities negotiating with BNP Paribas over alleged sanctions violations at one point suggested that France's biggest bank pay a penalty as high as $16 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Goldman stars fall back down to earth – Financial Times
Traders who made billions of dollars in profits for the bank as proprietary traders are finding that investment businesses require different skills

UK's financial services 'at risk' without greater effort on cybersecurity – The Telegraph
British Banking Association calls for greater collaboration ahead of meeting between security leaders.

 

If you like the Finanser, buy Chris Skinner's latest book: Digital Bank

 

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About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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