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Morning Briefing

Morning Briefing

When banking goes bad — in terms of technology glitches as opposed to financial misbehaviour — core technology systems come under the spotlight; CEOs shrug as if to say, 'What can we do? We have legacy issues'.

Well something can be done. Stockholm-headquartered bank Nordea has selected Accenture and Temenos to help it replace its core banking systems across the Nordic region.

Nordea's new core banking system will come from Temenos, while Accenture will guide its implementation as the bank seeks to utterly transform its core banking technology and enhance its digital banking capabilities.

Google's response to Apple Pay has gone live in the US. Android Pay will be accepted at more than a million retail locations across the country.

Discovery, the South African insurer, has applied for a licence to open a full service retail bank. Plans for the launch were set in place when it acquired almost 75 percent of its First National Bank-backed credit card, DiscoveryCard.

Discovery CEO Adrian Gore said the retail bank would be built from a technology perspective.

The head of the Union of Arab Banks, Mohammad Barakat, has warned that international correspondent banks' de-risking requirements run contrary to IMF and World Bank goals to combat poverty and create jobs.

"Reducing risks or de-risking manifests the determination of some correspondent banks to reduce or even sever ties with commercial banks in the region that are classified high risks in a bid to reduce the cost of compliance," he told a banking conference in Brussels.

Card spends in India rose by 28 percent in 2014-15 on the back of an e-commerce boom. Almost 22 percent of spending was on fashion items, with 30 per cent on retail products, 10 percent each on hotels and hospitals, and 5 percent and 3 percent, respectively, on travel and fuel.

The number of credit cards issued rose by 10 percent. In terms of debit cards, the market share of the country's largest bank, State Bank of India, fell by 4 percent to 29 percent, despite the fact that it actively opened accounts under the government's Jan Dhan Yojna financial inclusion scheme.

Also in India, the government has said it is not averse to merging public sector banks with stronger lenders.

The government has introduced a number of measures to strengthen the governance of state-run banks, but has acknowledged that mergers may be required in some cases if the banks remain fragile.

UK challenger banks have an ally in their opposition to the recently introduced eight percent banking surcharge after Treasury select committee chairman, Andrew Tyrie, said it was crucial that the tax does not impede competition in the sector.

Also in the UK, police are investigating the suspected theft of the personal data of 10,000 Lloyds Premier Banking customers following the disappearance of a storage device containing names, addresses, sort codes and account numbers.

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