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Shaping the future of finance

Regulation

Why P2P lending works in some markets and not in others

Someone asked me about getting return on investment in fintech. The discussion is about how many firms are actually delivering on their promise. So many unicorns are loss-making firms, and billion-dollar valuations on million-dollar revenues seems like a lot of hype. One article typified this feeling: High-society fintech under pressure to perform for billionaire backers in…

From sandbox to sandcastle

Another lively discussion followed my meeting with the FinTech communities in Asia. It was interesting as we had a chat about all aspects of what was happening in South-East Asia, and the overwhelming message that came back to me was that the regulatory sandboxes had become sandcastles. What I mean by this is that the…

China’s blood on the carpet in P2P lending

One other thing struck me as the discussions fired away in Shanghai at Lang Di … is China going to haemorrhage and bring down the world’s financial systems … or is that just what the Western media would like us to think? The reason I raise it is that I see almost every day in…

The State of FinTech in Latin America

I’m off to Chile next week and thought, in preparation, I’d look at the state of FinTech in Latin America. So far, I’ve spent fair time in Colombia, Brazil and Argentina, and see these as the three major centres of activity along with Mexico. Equally, I meet a lot of the LatAm companies in Miami at…

What is the point of an auditor?

Ever since the collapse of Enron, we’ve seen auditors under question. I’m sure most of you can remember the Enron disaster but, just in case, the company went from Energy King to Futures Basketcase faster than Lewis Hamilton could catch up with Sebastian Vettel yesterday. Much blame was placed on their auditor, Arthur Anderson, who were…

The UK regulators official position on crypto-assets

Building on yesterday’s discussions of regulating, I got copied on a letter that’s doing the rounds from Sam Woods, Deputy Governor of the PRA (the Prudential Regulatory Authority). It lays out the official position and expectations of the regulator when financial insitutions are dealing with crypto-assets. It makes for interesting reading and you can read…

Tech firms will be regulated like banks in future

I just listened to a presentation by Nick Thompson, editor-in-chief at Wired, about all things in the future of tech. A lot of it was focused upon Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning towards the end, but the first half was interesting as it focused upon why there is a backlash against Silicon Valley right now. He put…

Banks charged dead people fees for a decade

Everywhere around the world, I find politicians and bankers in dodgy practices. It’s because power and money go together. We’ve seen this clearly in EU and USA with LIBOR, CDOs, PPI, bribes, parties, prostitutes and more, and I was reminded of it when seeing a presentation the other day by Platon. Platon is a world-renowned…

The lies spread by bankers about cryptocurrencies

I had a chat with The Financial Times the other day, and provided lots of background as to why I don’t think cryptocurrencies are the choice of criminals. The comment that was reported was the following: Chris Skinner, a financial technology author, said it was “complete rubbish” to suggest the main use of cryptocurrencies was criminal….

Mark Carney slams bitcoin

The Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, has slammed the rise of cryptocurrencies insisting the costs to mine bitcoin is ‘enormous‘ and that the energy consumption is worrying, declaring current costs of electricity consumption used to mine the coins are “double the electricity consumption of Scotland.” The UK’s leading banker claims that cryptocurrencies will…

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