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Shaping the future of finance


The future of money according to the Swiss (shhh, it’s not bitcoin)

I just saw an interesting report produced and released by SIX Group that talks about the future of money.  SIX Group run payments and settlement processing out of Switzerland and, unsurprisingly, their view is that the most likely future is that there will be digital everything but still some cash around. My own view is…

Big Banks AND Big Tech (not versus)

I’ve said for a while that the Big Tech giants will not become banks. Amazon and Alibaba will do a lot of bank-like activities, but they will never move into full-service banking, as in offering deposit accounts. Why won’t they? Because that’s full banking activity which has all of the audit and compliance overhead that…

Big Banks versus Big Tech … it’s all about the money

I’ve blogged for a while now about the different approaches to Big Tech in China and America. In China, Big Tech is pretty much working hand-in-hand with government to solve society’s issues and police them. People in the West may not like it or understand it, but Big Brotherly Love works in China for the…

McKinsey reckon banks are in a ‘do-or-die’ moment … really?

A few talking points last week, but two hit me in particular. The first is a McKinsey report that reckons half of the world’s banks are not viable. Their cost of equity is higher than their return on equity. Should another downturn hit … well, they’re gone. “Every bank is uniquely bound by both the…

What’s the latest on #Brexit in banking then?

I’ve avoided any commentary on Brexit in recent times, as it seemed to be going nowhere. Finally, just ten days before deadline, the House of Commons voted that a deal could be done … just not in the deadline given. So, it now looks like 31st January, 2020. Maybe. The whole thing is a mess,…

Why decentralised currencies are a PEST!

Sometimes you debate stuff and a realisation comes. I had one of these today. When futurists talk about the future, they generally based their opinions on forces of change, known colloquially as PEST. Political, Economic, Social and Technological change. So I was having this debate with a friend about the future and that’s when the…

Google versus Government

I’ve been noticing that there are more and more issues arising with the big internet giants. Unlike in China, where the companies are working with governments, the big Western giants work outside government control. That creates issues, particularly in Europe where government does not like to be out of control. Hence the reason why American…

Some challengers really are challenging … but not where you’re looking

You’ve got to love all these challenger banks (née neobanks née digital banks née mobile banks née whatever banks) appearing. There’s lots of chat about the British ones led by Monzo and closely followed by Starling, Atom and Tandem, but there are many more. In the UK there’s Revolut, Zopa, Aldermore, Oaknorth, OneSavings and more,…

Is Revolut leading a FinTech revolution … or destroying it?

We are regularly being bombarded with unicorn news. Some rise and some fail. We hear about toxic corporate cultures and ousted CEOs on some occasions, with WeWork being the latest to get caught in the pre-IPO crossfire. In case you’re not aware, their CEO and founder has gone and now they’re scrapping their plans for…

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