Hello Fintech Friends,
Starting this week, we’re rolling out This Week in Fintech globally, with two new editions!
- This Week in Fintech - Europe and UK, written by Michael Jenkins.
- This Week in Fintech - India and Southeast Asia, written by Osborne Saldanha.
Michael and Osborne are both accomplished fintech operators, investors, and writers in their own right, and will bring a wealth of local knowledge and coverage to This Week in Fintech, in the same weekly format.
Please join me in welcoming them and subscribing to their newsletters :)
If you went to our Chicago or Denver happy hours yesterday, please send us photos!
Please enjoy another week of fintech and banking news below.
💬 Quote of the Week
“Something astonishing is going on in fintech. Much more money is pouring into it than usual. In the second quarter of the year alone it attracted $34bn in venture-capital funding, a record [...] One in every five dollars invested by venture capital this year has gone into fintech.”
- The Economist (Source)
📖 Read of the Week
I wrote a while ago on how most personal finance problems are really multidimensional issues: finances are the symptom, but there are often other root causes. This is something critical to understand if you work in consumer fintech: to improve people’s financial lives, you need to make sure that you are helping them - directly or via partnerships - with more than just their money management.
This week, journalist Lorie Konish covered the real reason that two thirds of Americans file for bankruptcy: medical costs. The astronomical cost of healthcare in the US has been devastating to the personal finances of many Americans, and unless we take a more holistic approach to ameliorating those costs, all the money management tips in the world won’t help.
📊 Stat of the Week
Fintech is responsible for roughly 1 in 5 (17%) of the world’s unicorns, more than any other sector. (Source)
Modern Treasury is the most powerful API for money movement. Businesses with complex money flows like Pipe, ClassPass and LedgerX use MT to automate, track and scale payment flows over ACH, Wire, RTP and other payment methods. The platform connects directly to your bank account to give you 2x faster settlement, complete control over your funds and real-time visibility into payment statuses. Learn more about Modern Treasury
💼 Open Role Spotlight
Goldfinch, which expands access to capital in emerging markets where crypto can truly empower financial inclusion, is hiring an Engineer, Senior Product Designer, Business Operations Manager, and Community Lead.
🏦 Financial Services & Banking
🚀 Product Launches
Frost Bank in the US is taking a page out of fintech’s book and allowing customers to access paychecks two days early.
American Express launched a self-service financial planning tool in partnership with fintech startup BodesWell.
Postbank Bulgaria launched a digital wallet.
📰 Other News
China’s banks are pushing each employee to recruit up to 300 new digital yuan users per year. The Singaporean and French central banks are testing a cross-border stablecoin exchange. The Malaysian central bank received 29 applications for digital banking licenses.
🚀 Product Launches
Propel launched a platform to help low-income families navigate government financial benefits.
SplitIt is launching buy-now-pay-later loans for in-store purchases. PayPal launched no-fee buy-now-pay-later in Australia. (Meanwhile, UK BNPL users surveyed think that the average time to pay off their debts is now up to 9 months.)
Latin America open banking platform Prometeo launched SPARK, a free credit platform for early-stage fintechs.
Quickbooks launched a card reader for in-store contactless payments.
Tally launched a bank account backed by physical gold.
Google Pay launched a virtual card to pay in-store out of its stored value wallet balance.
Boubyan Bank launched a digital Sharia-compliant bank in the UK.
📰 Other News
ProjectPay wants to streamline construction payments.
LendUp appears to be closing down operations.
Mobile payments company Boku predicts that over half the world’s population will use mobile wallets by 2025.
In collaboration with Ben White.
- The White House issued an Executive Order on competition, calling on the CFPB to move forward with open banking rules and on Treasury to issue a new fintech report.
- Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said during testimony that a report on Central Bank Digital Currencies is coming in September.
- U.S. financial regulators issued a proposal for joint guidance on third-party risk management, carrying major potential impact for how banks oversee fintech partners. (Comments are due in 60 days.)
- The House Financial Services Committee held a hearing Friday on artificial intelligence and online privacy.
- The Bank of International Settlements published two new reports, one on the need for global cooperation on CBDC, and the other on regulatory oversight, competition and stability.
- The CFPB levied a fine against lending fintech GreenSky for improperly issuing loans.
- Sweden’s financial regulator is investigating Klarna’s recent data disruption as a violation of banking secrecy laws.
- The European Central Bank approved the next stage of a digital euro - a 24 month investigation into use cases and impacts.
- India’s government has banned Mastercard from issuing new debit or credit cards due to the company’s noncompliance over data storage rules.
- Novus secured regulatory approval for a ‘conscious consumer’ focused fintech app.
Interested in understanding the key disruptive innovations for payments in the fintech industry? Download the Aite Group Report, featuring TrueAccord, to learn why digital-first, machine learning powered collections are creating better experiences for consumers in debt.
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