Chris Skinner's blog

Shaping the future of finance


Too fast to innovate, too slow to change

As mentioned yesterday, the regulator tries to keep up with the banks who try to keep up with customer, and I said that banks often innovate too slowly. There are many examples of this, but the one that I come back to regularly is Chip & PIN. Chip & PIN has been an enormous success,…

Chip &Pin

Why should we innovate?

I was talking at a conference and a regulator was on the panel.   The panel chair asked him: “should we think about innovation first or regulation?” and he responded by saying: “It is not a question of regulation or innovation.  I would rather ask the question: why do we need innovation at all?  Who is it…

Archive- mag disc

The last typewriter … what next?

I just saw a note today that the Science Museum has acquired the very last typewriter produced by the Brother factory: “The factory’s 200 employees witnessed the final model of the Brother CM-1000 being packed into its box to a soundtrack of emotional sighs and cheers. This object is the 5,855,533rd of its type to be…


A hundred years of cash

A hundred years ago, things were different but the same. We needed to eat, but what we ate was very much a national rather than international cuisine. We had to travel, but we would walk, bicycle of take the train. We enjoyed entertainment, with a visit to the cinema once a month as a treat….


Britain celebrates euro failure

This week sees Britain celebrating. No, not the end of a phenomenal summer of sport. No, not the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee again. And no, not the 200 year anniversary of the start of the end of Napoleon after his fatal march to Moscow, although how we missed celebrating that one I don’t know. No, it’s none…

The Future of Hacktivism: the Collective Party

During the week, I’ve been discussing various aspects of risk and riot in the system, from the potential for an uprising to how anonymous works. One of the key areas to consider is also where all this goes in the future. That’s what I thought would be good to talk about today. I should be…

We are Legion: the History of Hacktivism

I went to see a screening of a new film about Anonymous last night called We Are Legion: the Story of the Hacktivists. The film tells the story about the rise of Anonymous and the hacktivism movement, portrayed through interviews with many of the key players. The film includes some of my favourite discussion areas,…


What is the alternative to LIBOR?

After the LIBOR debacle and the money laundering affairs of Standard Chartered and HSBC, the UK’s banks reputation are in the toilet. Now we have to rebuild, and this is where it gets interesting and challenging. After claiming that the Americans were holding our banks to ransom last week, we now see the potentially true…

Who are you f-ing Americans?

Standard Chartered paid off the new Sheriff of New York City, Benjamin Lawsky, to the tune of $340 million to get rid of the pest.  As Investec's commentator Ian Gordon said yesterday, they “acted with pragmatism and integrity in the face of extreme provocation”. What really gets me here is the whole USA versus the rest…

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Back to banking basics is nice, but not realistic

With all this talk of greed and corruption in the City (more on that later too), everyone is demanding a return to basic banking. I’ve heard this several times in the past week and over the past few years. Just yesterday, over lunch, my colleague was recalling the days when you needed credit from the…


Intelligent Money: Our Future Is Where We Do Not Think About Money, As Our Money Thinks For Us

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