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Did 2018 live up to expectations?

As usual, I began the year with a bunch of predictions. I always like to end the year by going back and reviewing them.

My own predictions were a little bit off. I said the main four things that would happen this year were:

  1. Getting down to business with Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  2. Rationalising and cleansing core data structures
  3. Continuing the digital drive
  4. Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) continues to rise

I would claim that 1 and 3 did happen, but I didn’t see much of 2 and 4, DLT, well … are you pulling my blockchain? In fact, my worst prediction was that “cryptocurrencies valuations continue to rise (some say bitcoin will exceed $100,000 soon), and regulators will focus upon these markets to try and lock them down” … or maybe the regulatory involvement did quell that bubble’s burst.

Disappointing in many ways that 2018 didn’t see a greater movement forward to get bank systems and structures sorted out, but then I guess many are still just focused on their shareholder returns and they’re doing fine so why bother?

Nevertheless, I wasn’t the only one more optimistic at start of year than at end of.

Jim Marous of The Financial Brand had this lovely crowd sourced list of priorities back in January

  1. Removing Friction from the Customer Journey
  2. Expanding Use of Data and Advanced Analytics
  3. Improving Multichannel Delivery (note: I never use the word channel)
  4. Embracing PSD2 and Open API Banking
  5. Building Fintech Partnerships
  6. Expansion of Digital Payments
  7. Navigating Compliance and Regulatory Changes
  8. Exploring Advanced Technologies
  9. Competing with New Challengers
  10. Testing Blockchain Technologies (that was last year imho)

I would say that only number 5 saw any real traction out of this list, or maybe I’m being too harsh?

Meantime, I did share this infographic at the start of the year from Clari5 by Customer XPS …

Looking back, this was probably the most accurate reflection of what happened in 2018. Do you agree?


About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, TheFinanser.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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