According to a new study released by J.D. Power consumers gave the highest ratings to some of the biggest banks...
Bank of America’s digital investment product, Merrill Edge, has seen their assets under management grow with the help of branches to serve clients; Merrill Lynch has plans to add 600 new investment centers within Bank of America branches to help with this strategy; the combination of using technology and human advice for high net worth clients is a growing trend among bigger banks as they compete with new robo entrants. Source.
UK based Pia, personal investment assistant, is testing their new aggregator platform to help people find the best digital wealth advisor; “We spent time speaking to people who said we need to launch a product that’s far more accessible, interesting and engaging for somebody that doesn’t have a lot of investing experience and don’t know where to start,” said co-founder James Mackonochie to TearSheet; the difference between Pia and a typical aggregator site is they will use an AI powered chatbot to customize the user experience. Source.
Microinvesting fintech app Blast has come up with a new way for individuals to save money, video games; unlike past attempts where a bank has created a savings game, Blast’s idea is to use existing games like League of Legends or Counter-Strike: Global Offensive where players are rewarded for tasks completed; this new style of gamification is not trying to change the user but instead it looks to use the framework of a customers existing life; they are currently starting with a savings account but are seeking partnerships with financial institutions. Source.
According to a new report by CB Insights global fintech funding reached $5.4bn across 323 deals in Q1 2018; deal activity was highest in the U.S. and Asia, Europe on the other hand fell to a five quarter low; early stage companies in Europe were not receiving investments, though later stage companies were still having success; regtech, wealth management and digital banking led the way, while online lenders lagged behind. Source.
Betterment is looking to cater to their wealthier clients as they make portfolios more personalized; they launched the Betterment Flexible Portfolio which allows customers to shoes how assets weights are allocated; the typical Betterment client uses the asset weights set by the robo advisor, but this feature is meant to personalize the wealth clients portfolio; the move will try to help the company to position themselves as a full service firm that can cater to different levels of clientele, not just the younger investor. Source.
The Wall Street Journal reports a new fundraising round led by DST Global will value the company at more than $5bn; the last valuation was about $1.3bn in 2017; popularity in the app has since jumped when it expanded to include cryptocurrencies bitcoin, ethereum and litecoin; since launching they have reached more than 4 million users and the new valuation will put them in the top 15 of highest valued private tech companies in the U.S. Source.