Weekly News Highlights – 21 April 2023

Stay up to date with the latest news from fintech! This week, we bring you updates on regulations, legislation, partnerships, and more. Enjoy reading!

Worldline partners Crédit Agricole to build “major payments player” in France (Fintech Futures)
Global paytech Worldline has partnered with retail bank Crédit Agricole to build a new joint payment company in France. The joint venture is expected to be operational by 2025 and will leverage Crédit Agricole’s merchant acquiring footprint, distribution network and knowledge of the French market as well as Worldline’s tech and global infrastructure capabilities across in-store and online payments. Worldline CEO Gilles Grapinet says the partnership represents a “unique opportunity” for the paytech to expand its footprint and scale within continental Europe’s largest acquiring market, worth around €700 billion in merchant sales value. Read more

P27 Nordic Payments withdraws second clearing application (Finextra)
The future of P27 Nordic Payments (P27), the largest regional, cross-border, instant payment project to be attempted in history, is uncertain. In a statement released on Thursday, the company announced that it has withdrawn its clearing licence application from Finansinspektionen, the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority. In the press release, P27 CEO Paula da Silva stated: “Our vision was to provide a better payments infrastructure to the 27 million people living in the Nordics, with an optimistic timeline. Lately, it is evident that our vision was too ambitious and complex. Hence, we need to reassess our future ambition in the Nordic payments market.” Read more

ECB and SRB support the EU bank crisis framework (The Paypers)
ECB and SRB have welcomed the European Commission’s proposed legislative changes to the European bank crisis management and deposit insurance framework. The European Central Bank (ECB) and the Single Resolution Board (SRB) took part in the consultation process that led to the European Commission’s proposals and published related documents, such as the ECB contribution and the SRB contribution. Both institutions stand ready to provide technical input to further enhance the Commission’s proposals and ensure that the overall framework is consistent and workable. The proposals contain many developments. For example, they clarify the scope of the application of a resolution in relation to national liquidation procedures. They also enhance the toolkit for managing bank failures in a way that protects critical functions and citizens effectively. Read more

Apple launches savings account (Finextra)
Apple has launched its long-trailed Apple Card savings account from Goldman Sachs with a 4.15% annual percentage yield. American users can set up and manage a savings account directly from Apple Card in Wallet, with no fees, no minimum deposits, and no minimum balance requirements. All Daily Cash rewards earned through the Apple Card will be automatically deposited into the savings account. Users can deposit additional funds through a linked bank account, or from their Apple Cash balance. Once set up, Apple Card users can keep track of money in Wallet through a Savings dashboard, which shows their account balance and interest accrued over time. Read more

ING Germany partners with share to launch Girokonto Future (The Paypers)
ING Germany has announced adding a sustainable option to its current account. Customers can now use the “Girokonto Future” account for an additional euro a month, in which all customer deposits are matched with social and ecological financing and investments. The basis for the use of funds is a set of sustainability criteria specially developed for the account, which take into account the UN principles for responsible banking and are based on the EU taxonomy in terms of content. ING is working with the social impact company share for the “Girokonto Future”. Share also receives a subsidy of EUR 1 per month from ING per customer. The customer can freely choose which share project is funded with this amount. For ING Germany, the “Girokonto Future” is the first product alternative with which the offer in the private customer business is to be structurally more sustainable. According to an ING representative, they want to offer an option in daily banking with which they can promote social and economic change. Read more

Bitpanda launches CFDs for crypto trading (The Paypers)
Austria-based fintech Bitpanda has announced including CFDs in its product range. Contracts for Difference, or CFDs, are a financial product that enables speculative trading with borrowed capital. CFDs for trading cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Solana are available on the company’s investment platform under the name “Bitpanda Leverage”. These products essentially make it possible to bet on rising or falling prices, also known as going “long” or “short”. In practice, this means that if the Bitcoin price rises by 10%, for example, the price of a Bitcoin short CFD with a single leverage falls by 10%. A Bitcoin long CFD with a double leverage, on the other hand, would rise by 20%. According to the Bitpanda press release, CFDs are a complex financial instrument and carry a high risk of losing money. The vast majority of retail accounts lose money on this trade. Therefore, Bitpanda stresses that investors should consider whether they understand how CFDs work and whether they could afford to risk their money. A Bitpanda representative describes the product offering as a new way to trade the crypto markets in the short term. Bitpanda had already made the new CFD products available to a limited number of customers at the end of 2022. Now they are being rolled out to all traders on the Bitpanda app. Read more

Digital Currency Monetary Authority launches an international CDBC (The Paypers)
The Digital Currency Monetary Authority (DCMA) has launched an international CDBC that complies with IMF-proposed crypto assets policy recommendations. The Universal Monetary Unit (UMU) is legally a money commodity that can transact in any legal tender settlement currency. It also functions like a CBDC when it comes to enforcing banking regulations and protecting the financial integrity of the international banking system according to This international CBDC allows banks to attach SWIFT Codes and bank accounts to a UMU digital currency wallet with the purpose of conducting cross-border payments over digital currency rails that bypass the correspondent banking system. This method is available at wholesale FX rates and supports instant real-time settlements. As for regulation, UMU uses a global localisation public monetary system architecture, which means that it can be configured to operate according to the central banking regulations of each participating jurisdiction. Read more

European national privacy body forms ChatGPT taskforce (Global Fintech)
The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) has formed a ChatGPT taskforce to establish privacy guidelines on the AI platform. According to Finextra, the announcement by the watchdog comes after ChatGPT was temporarily banned in Italy due to concerns of data breaches and privacy. However, last week it was revealed that ChatGPT could be allowed to return to Italy if OpenAi, its maker, complies with privacy rules underlined by the Italian data protection authority Garante. After this, Germany’s data protection commissioner released a statement indicating that they could follow suit. Elsewhere, the Spanish Data Protection Authority said they would also conduct an investigation into the privacy breaches by the AI tool. Commission Nationale de l’Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL), the French regulator recorded five complaints on ChatGPT reporting invasions into personal data, one of which came from an MP. Read more

Clearstream launches new bank in Luxembourg for institutional fund investors (Fintech Futures)
Global post-trading services provider Clearstream, a subsidiary of the Deutsche Börse Group, has created a new bank in Luxembourg to serve institutional fund investors. The new entity, named Clearstream Fund Centre, operates under a commercial banking licence in Luxembourg and will sit within Clearstream’s Fund Services business segment. Clearstream Fund Services provides solutions for the fund ecosystem via three business lines – its fund execution business Vestima, European fund data hub Kneip, and the newly created Fund Centre bank. Vestima provides order execution, settlement, and custody services for more than 230,000 funds in over 50 markets. Read more

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