Weekly Analysis and Opinion Highlights – 17 January 2021

And we’re kicking off the week with new details on diversity in finance, predictions on 2022, banking, contactless limit and more. Dive into the latest fintech insights and have a great start of the week!

If we truly value diversity, fintech needs to do much more (Fintech Futures)
Fintech is about progress. As a concept, it represents the modernisation of an old, archaic industry – making services faster, simpler, easier to use. We often hear of fintech growing at such-and-such rate, with new firms constantly emerging that ‘revolutionise’ the way we shop, spend, save, bank, pay and so on. It is an industry that disrupts; that insists on not only new ways of doing, but new ways of thinking. And yet, for all its forward-thinking and future-proofing, fintech is struggling when it comes to diversity and inclusion. Less than 30% of the UK’s fintech workforce are women. 17% of senior roles are held by women and just 5% of founders are women. Read more.

Predictions for Business & Society in 2022 (Aspeninstitute)
What will we find at the crossroads of business and society in 2022?
That’s the question the Aspen Institute Business & Society Program posed to business executives, activists, scholars and journalists, from Billie Jean King to Joe Nocera. Our contributors agree on one thing: 2022 will be a year when we’ll see whether lofty promises on social issues produce real progress, or just make an appearance. Read more.

Six reasons why landlords should re-evaluate their choice of bank (Fintech Futures)
Recent data from HMRC suggests there are now around 2.65 million landlords in the UK, each jostling with a bunch of different financial challenges. From service charges to rental holidays, a lot is going on. Ideally, banks should be in a strong position to support landlords on their journey, but… unfortunately, this is rarely the case. With less and less time for one-to-one service alongside more and more regulatory and financial demands, let’s take a look at where banks need to step up. And when landlords need to walk away. Read more.

Six big digital trends to watch in 2022 (The Conversation)
According to recent McKinsey research, 2021 was a year of transformation: people, corporations and society began to look ahead to influencing their futures rather than just surviving the present. It was the year that premature hopes for herd immunity, an end to pandemic lockdowns, and a return to normality were dashed – at least for now. But aside from the Great Social Media Resignation, during which burnt-out Gen Z workers quit their jobs on TikTok and Instagram, the rise of non fungible tokens (NFTs), and the introduction of the metaverse, the world’s space-going billionaires were as wealthy and productive in business and technology as ever. Read more.

The impact of the contactless limit increase on financial inclusion (Fintech Futures)
The financial services industry has transformed since the onset of the pandemic. We’ve seen the number of digital payments dramatically increase in the UK and the volume of cashless transactions globally is predicted to double by 2030. In October 2021, we hit a new milestone for the payments industry. Shoppers across the UK are now able to spend up to £100 using contactless card payments, more than double the previous limit of £45. For many small businesses who adopted card payment technology for the first time during the pandemic, this is a welcome move – it means the infrastructure they have in place will continue to serve them and their customers well. But what does this increase mean for the future of the payments industry and financial services more widely? Read more.

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