Chris Skinner's blog

Shaping the future of finance


My worst prediction ever

I was asked the other day about my worst prediction ever made. My answer may surprise some, but it was the view that intermediaries would disappear as technology takes over. I made that prediction about independent financial advisors back in the 1990s as call centres appeared. It didn’t come true. Since I made that prediction,…

There are always questions about the future

There are always questions about the future. It’s the only thing we don’t know. We don’t know what will happen in the future, so we ask lots of questions. What will happen when Amazon opens a bank? Will regulators create new rules about data sharing? How will quantum computing change the game? Is distributed ledgers…

Who governs the internet?

I have this debate often: Why governments will fail to block the emergence of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin Can you have decentralised exchange without centralised control? Is the world being democratised through technology? How do governments regulate a networked world? A world without money A world without government? … and find the answer always the…

Banks need a purpose other than making money

I wrote a couple of recent blogs about the issue with finding good developers and attracting them to banks. The first, about the war for talent, made the statement: the main motivation of developers joining a firm is to solve interesting problems. The second, titled When code is art, how do you attract great artists?, talked…

Is there any way to change the status quo?

No, I’m not talking about Francis Rossi but the issue of how to achieve sustainability. This came up during a lunch, where my lunch colleague had picked up on my discussions of sustainable finance, and started to debate how we could change things. The issue we agreed is with governments, but government focus upon votes,…

Sustainable finance for sustainable abundance

Talking of Long Finance (see last week’s updates on sustainable finance), there’s some really interesting publications from the group that runs this program, in partnership with the Financial Services Club. This builds on the work of the Long Now. I wrote a long blog about The Long Now almost a decade ago, and haven’t updated much since….

BlackRock’s BS … and other stories of sustainable finance

A big area of debate in banking that has been around since the 1990s is how to make banks more accountable for sustainability. I talk about this a lot these days as 71% of all Green House Gas (GHGs) emissions emitted on planet earth since 1988 came from just 100 companies. If we could change…

FinTech is on fire and London is burning …

A regular question that comes up is: When will the Fintech bubble burst? My claim is that it won’t under my watch, as this is as big a restructuring of banking and finance as the internet has been for commerce and trade. The latter change is still underway after a quarter century – it doesn’t…

Why is financial inclusion a good thing?

Whilst at the United Nations they had me doing various activities, one of which was a panel for UNTV. The panel comprised Elliot Harris, UN Chief Economist; Matthew Blake, Head of Future of Financial and Monetary Systems, World Economic Forum; and was moderated by Gillian Tett, Editor-at-large, Financial Times. You can watch the short discussion…

Financing is critical to our future world

A key part of UN’s agenda for sustainability is the taskforce for digital financing. Officially launched in November 2018, around the same time as the UN’s Principles for Responsible Banking, the taskforce is specifically tasked by the Secretary General of the UN to look at how the financial system and technology can assist in achieving…

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Chris Skinner
Commentator, CEO of The Finanser and best-selling author at The Finanser

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About Chris Skinner

Presentation at ZBP, September 2020, Warsaw, Poland

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Gaping Void's Hugh MacLeod worked with the Finanser