The UK will suffer a catastrophic loss in its financial industries post-Brexit, according to new research from the Centre for European Reform. "The think-tank sought to assess the impact of new trading barriers on the key areas of services where Britain currently has a comparative advantage -- finance, insurance, law and accountancy," reports the FT. "It estimates, in a paper published on Tuesday, that exports of financial services, minus insurance and pensions, would drop from their level of £23.6bn in 2013 to £9.8bn -- a decline of 59 per cent -- if Brexit led to the UK and EU trading services under the provisions of a free trade agreement, rather than as a member of the single market." The Centre for European Reform, according to Wikispooks, is a "New Labour think tank" which is close to the American Enterprise Institute. The author's paper Sam Lowe said the only way to limit this damage was a huge expansion of the equivalence regime.
The pan-African bank Banque Centrale Populaire has acquired mobile money service Wizall, which it plans to integrate into its broader offering. "In an interview with the publication, the bank's international development director Kamal Mokdad said Wizall's mobile money transfer and payment systems would be combined with another of its financial services companies, ATPS, to drive its mobile banking operations in the region. Wizall provides mobile payment and cash transfer to consumers in Senegal, with plans in place to expand the service to Ivory Coast, Mali and Burkina Faso." The news comes as a flurry of activity in the mobile money space saw Nigeria announce payments bank licences and MTN and Orange announced their intent to drive a continent-wide interoperable mobile money system.
The debate on legacy systems and core banking at Lafferty's London conference in September was fascinating and now we see the emergence of some serious new players in the previously closed core banking space. Thought Machine, led by chief executive Paul Taylor, who sold his previous company to Google, has announced two big deals in recent days. This morning, Lloyds Bank said it will implement Thought Machine's core banking software next year, while earlier this week, Thought Machine announced a partnership with IBM, with the hardware giant set to supply the cloud computing power behind Thought Machine's Vault offering. (Yes, cloud computing still does require computers.)
Lloyds Bank received three stars in the 2018 Lafferty Banking 500. The maximum score is five stars.
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