Technology is and has always been a crucial part of finance. From the first promissory notes (banknotes) in the Netherlands and China, there was a race with counterfeiters that parasitically undermined trust. As in political communication, technology is the message, rather than merely "a tool": when it comes to money, trust is not just instrumental, it is fundamental. With cashless payments being the norm and social media platforms weαving an additional layer of involvement in our social data web – Amazon, Google, Facebook, Apple – Artificial Intelligence (AI) is already in our wallets, business, and financial affairs. In a non-western setting, one may refer to the Chinese "social rating" system, which allows the state to value and evaluate social behaviour patterns, creating a link to individual credit rating.
The federal government has released its statement on Australia's fintech future, saying that financial technology is transforming the nation's financial system, with the ability to revolutionise how consumers and businesses interact. "Australia already has a sophisticated, competitive, and profitable financial sector underpinned by a strong regulatory system," Morrison said. "As financial services become more globalised and technological disruption more relevant, we need to keep pace with innovation in banking and finance to stay competitive." As outlined in its statement, the government's actions include ensuring access to concessional tax treatment for venture capital investments in startup fintech firms, and commissioning the Productivity Commission to outline options to increase data availability and access to facilitate new products and better consumer outcomes. Morrison said the government also intends to take action to address the "double GST" treatment of digital currencies such as bictoin.
Crowdfund Insider reached out to the Fintech community members to look into their crystal balls and make some predictions for the upcoming year in their respective sectors. Their predictions cover a wide range of topics including crowdfunding, social missions, regulations, open banking, capital markets, AI, blockchain and community bank. "In 2019 there will be more than one crowdfunding exit of a company worth in excess of a billion dollars in which crowdfunding participants were able to invest through platforms." With regard to Fintech, Medved believes that "money will continue to roll in to the Fintech sector in a wide range of companies including blockchain, payments, alternative investment platforms and more. Banks will increasingly join the funding of this disruption."
My colleague Lucinda Shen wrote an interesting article about Second Measure, a startup that pulls together consumers credit card transactions, analyzes the trends, and sends it out with a roughly two week delay. In a time when the internet seems to have information on just about everything, getting data earlier than most can be the edge needed for a winning investment. That's what companies such as Goldman Sachs, and Citi Ventures are betting on with Second Measure, a startup that pulls together consumers credit card transactions, analyzes the trends, and sends it out with a roughly two week delay--an advantage to quarterly financial statements that come out every three months. On Tuesday, Second Measure announced $20 million in Series A funding led by Bessemer Venture Partners and Goldman Sachs. The startup, founded by two software engineers that once worked at gaming company Electronic Arts, now counts roughly 150 clients, with asset managers such as Neuberger Berman and venture capital clients such as New Enterprise Associates among the ranks.