Why Google, Apple and Facebook don’t want to be banks…

Recent research has shown that banks spend more on IT than any other industry sector (See Deutsche Bank Research – IT in banks: What does it cost?). In fact, on average banks expend 7.3% of their budgets on technology, where other industries average half of that at 3.7%. Bankers would defend these costs because of [...]

Who’s easier to save, a banker or a dictator?

Bankers often talk about the ‘trust’ consumers have in banking as a defining characteristic of why customers give banks their money instead of simply keeping it under a mattress. Some bankers might have difficulty understanding why customers of today seem perfectly happy to give money to the likes of PayPal, M-PESA, Lending Club or Zopa. [...]

The Modality Shift of Banking – Part 5

Transparency challenges new revenue and friction In September of 2009 Ann Minch, a customer of Bank of America, posted a video on YouTube called the “Debtor’s Revolt”. Ann detailed her case against BofA who had unilaterally increased her credit card APR (Annual Percentage Rate) to 30% from its historical 12.99% – quite a jump. She [...]

Don’t worry – you don’t need to develop an iPhone App

As of May this year, only 4% of US FDIC insured institutions in the United States had any sort of mobile play, a small subset of this group had iPhone apps, and an even smaller percentage had Android apps. We already know that mobile Internet based banking is the fastest growing interaction channel for banks [...]

BANK 2.0: Too big to change?

Reformists and regulators in the US, in the EU and in other jurisdictions are grappling with the problem of massive banks and how their financial health is tied up with the very vitality of the economy. This happens because as the banks are so large and represent a major indicator of the health of the stock market, and thus the macro-economy, it is possible that one of them went under it would have deleterious effects on the economy at large.

But banks are struggling with a new challenge. Are they too big to innovate, to change, to improve life for the customers that are their lifeblood? It appears so…

Retail Bankers – Wake up to the 21st Century already!

Why have banks been so slow to adopt mobile banking, improvements in internet banking, customer experience and social media engagement?

Is it cost? Is it technical or platform integration issues? Or is it something more intractable.

Banks need to wake up to the 21st Century and fast. But as Albert Einstein said, problems aren’t going to be solved by the same thinking that created them.

Forget greater regulation, social media will force transparency

As President Obama was gearing up last month to push further reforms for the finance sector through congress, the sector lobbyists were also gearing up for a battle of PR wits to try to prevent changes that threaten the status quo. Senior industry players like Jamie Dimon were extremely vocal in challenging the president’s push for greater regulation.

The mantra of “too big to fail” was the protection the big banks were all hoping to fall back on, and this call was certainly an underlying foundation of the bailout and TARP initiative in the US. The fear that if the biggest banks fail, the economic repercussions would be so serious that it is less costly and more economically prudent to bailout big banks so the economy didn’t get hurt further. Such sector lobbying and grandstanding is a fairly standard reaction to such government intervention, as we’ve seen time and time again.

But will social media have the last word in this battle?…

Brett King: HSBC, BofA, ANZ struggle with Social Media

The 2.0 phenomenon is going strong. Despite Facebook’s unbridled success, Twitter storm to the popular vernacular and FourSquare recent burst, some traditional marketers, bankers and observers still don’t get what all the fuss is about. But increasingly they will do…