Responding to demand, banks plan for greater tech use

For centuries, banking technology consisted of ink on paper. In this century, technology moves faster and most of us have trouble keeping up with it. Consider the smartphone. Since Apple introduced the iPhone a decade ago, the amount of time Americans spend using a mobile device to access the internet has gone from near zero to two-thirds of their digital minutes. It’s no surprise, then, that banks have been working on upgrading their technology. What was their focus in 2017, and what’s coming up in 2018? [Continue]

Cryptocurrency: Breaking through commercial barriers

A curious bit of news came across the banking wires recently. Burger King in Russia had launched its own currency: WhopperCoin. Built on the same blockchain technology as bitcoin, such homebrewed money is known generically as cryptocurrency. While bitcoin has remained something of a curiosity to bankers, personalized currencies, particularly in commercial enterprises, are already being developed and tested by the biggest players in the market. [Continue]

Ideas from an online lender

If you want to know how to market to millennials, watch Social Finance, the online lender that calls itself SoFi. This is the company that started out refinancing student loans, but now also makes personal loans and mortgages. It just applied for a charter to operate an industrial bank in Utah, which would give it the opportunity to offer credit cards and FDIC-insured deposit accounts. [Continue]

Sandbox or Greenhouse? A safe space for tech experimentation

The Financial Services Innovation Act, introduced by Congressman Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) last fall, remains in contention for a hearing this year. The bill is designed to promote innovation in financial products without fear that regulators will make companies unnecessarily tap the brakes. Less controversial than the OCC’s proposed fintech charter, passage of the bill would … Read more