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Fintech A.M.: 09-01-2018

In today’s fintech A.M., bitcoin continues to play a leading role in the financial news, especially in the ongoing tumult in China. More positive news is expected to be heard from the e-commerce industry, as more consumers are planning on adapting innovation and European e-invoicing is being streamlined.

Bitcoin worries

Last year, Chinese authorities banned initial coin offerings and ordered local authorities to stop cryptocurrency trading. Now, Chinese authorities plan to go even further by outlining proposals to discourage bitcoin mining as well. Other sources indicate that Chinese authorities will not shutdown bitcoin mining activities, however, are planning to remove preferential behaviour towards bitcoin mining companies.
As a result, some of the biggest industry players are relocating their operations. For example, the company behind China’s two largest bitcoin mining collectives, Bitmain, now has mining operations in the U.S. and Canada and is currently establishing its headquarters in Singapore.
Other bitcoin troubles have arisen as well, this time aimed at bitcoin payments, as Microsoft has banned bitcoin payments. The ban, although assumed to be temporary, is due to the currently unstable state of the cryptocurrency, which may result in huge losses for the technology company.

e-Commerce

With the rapid rise of technological developments in the e-commerce market, consumers are starting to adapt to these innovations as well. A collaborative research performed by Narvar and YouGov shows that UK consumers expect to triple the amount they use voice-controlled devices to shop in 2018. In 2017, only 2% of all UK consumers used products like Google Home and Amazon Echo for online shopping. The UK lags behind the US, as other research shows that 45% of consumers already use or plan to use voice-controlled assistants.
The European E-invoicing Service Providers Association (EESPA) has released a new version of the MIFA agreement under which its members will exchange e-invoices and other documents on behalf of their customers. With the new agreement will benefit EESPA members and their customers, by facilitating rapid on-boarding and efficient operations.
 
By Michael Brooijmans, Research Analyst at Holland FinTech

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