The Federal Reserve plans to launch a real-time payments system within the next five years; Robinhood received approval from the U.K. FCA to operate as a broker in the country; Walmart is seeking a patent for a digital currency that customers could use within the retailer’s ecosystem; Apple updated its website ahead of the launch of Apple Card; Swedish payments firm Klarna raised $460M, making it the most valuable European fintech; and the FT discusses India’s importance as a battleground for digital payments market share between American and Chinese competitors.
Rakuten is applying for an ILC charter in Utah; Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro was accused of using cryptocurrency to evade international financial sanctions; the U.K. FCA published guidance on crypto assets; Capital One disclosed that a data breach exposed the personal information of 100 million customers; and the London Stock Exchange is acquiring Refinitiv for $27B; and LabCFTC Director Gorfine is leaving the agency.
U.S. lawmakers voiced their concerns regarding Facebook’s Libra rollout; Australian digital bank 86 400 was granted a banking license; The FCA announced its partnership with the Alan Turing Institute to explore the use of AI in the financial sector; N26 raised an additional $170M; and Jamie Dimon said he does not expect Libra to have a short-term impact on JP Morgan.
The U.S. House Financial Services Committee formally requested that Facebook halt its planned Libra rollout; the U.K. FCA proposed a ban on derivatives tied to crypto assets; IBM’s TradeLens consortium added new members; the forthcoming Libra currency is already attracting digital scammers and domain squatters hoping to make a quick profit; and the Financial Times published an opinion piece on why central banks should issue digital currencies.
Kik is expected to challenge the SEC over an ICO enforcement action; Coinbase rolled out crypto institutional services in Asia; Alipay was granted an EU e-money license; Bitcoin ATM startups reported growth; the EU and Japan finalized a data flow agreement; and IBM landed a $260m IT infrastructure deal with the Bank of the Philippine Islands.
State groups are not pleased about the OCC’s decision to accept bank charter applications from fintech firms; IBM and Maersk are partnering on a blockchain-based global supply chain management platform; the NYDFS will begin enforcing new cybersecurity regulations next month; the U.K. FCA established a Global Financial Innovation Network; and China’s Bitmain is on track to become the first blockchain-focused company with $10B in annual revenue.