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20.12.2012
The future of (mobile) payments: New (online) players competing with banks
Abstract: The rise of mobile and online payments opens up new opportunities, but of course also presents new risks for financial services providers. A lot of attention is currently paid to the (walled garden) strategies of new competitors such as Google, Apple or PayPal. They are increasingly putting out their feelers in segments outside of their own territory, e.g. the market for (mobile) payments. Those financial services providers who do not modernise their upstream and downstream value chains or subject them to the transformation process required for the digital network architecture could suffer painful losses over the medium term. Our paper draws four scenarios on how the market share of banks might develop in about three to five years’ time, with a particular focus on the European market.
Topics: Banking; E-commerce; Global financial markets; Information technology; Innovation; Internet; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Media/PR & Advertising; Sectors / commodities; Services; Social values / Consumer behaviour; Socio-econ. trends; Technology and innovation; Telecommunication; Trade
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20.11.2012
Universal banks: Optimal for clients and financial stability
Abstract: The political dynamics in Europe have shifted against universal banks in recent months. This is a dangerous development that threatens the key role such banks play in modern economies and risks eliminating many of the advantages universal banks have to offer: in a “one-stop shop”, they provide their customers with a broad range of tailor-made services, higher volumes of credit and lower funding costs than narrower “specialist banks”. In addition, thanks to the diversification of their operations and the potential to leverage revenue and cost synergies, universal banks tend to be more stable than specialist banks. They also provide for diversity in bank business models and are better positioned to monitor the financial health of specific clients as well as to spot unsustainable risk accumulation across financial markets.
Topics: Banking; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Supervision and regulation
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14.11.2012
GCC financial markets: Long-term prospects for finance in the Gulf region
Abstract: The GCC (Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf) countries stand a solid chance of succeeding in developing their financial markets and promoting their competitiveness. GCC countries progressed on this objective at different pace. A convincing joint strategy for developing markets and their integration as well as a continuation of the improvement of legal and regulatory framework conditions will be indispensable if the GCC and its main financial hubs want to narrow the gap with the top ranks of global financial centres.
Topics: Asia; Banking; Emerging markets; Financial market trends; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Middle East; Supervision and regulation
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27.09.2012
First birthday for the Swiss franc floor against the euro: Unorthodox intervention to tackle huge capital inflows
Abstract: Over a year ago the Swiss National Bank (SNB) took drastic action to halt the massive appreciation of the Swiss franc, by introducing an explicit floor of CHF 1.20 per euro. With its measure the SNB has sought to stem the huge tide of capital inflows. This policy may offer an interesting insight into the also increasingly unorthodox policies being pursued to address the crisis in the euro area.
Topics: Capital markets; Capital markets policy; Economic policy; Exchange rates; Financial market trends; Global financial markets; Intern. economic system; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Macroeconomics; Monetary policy; Prices, inflation; Supervision and regulation; Trade
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13.09.2012
Microfinance in evolution: An industry between crisis and advancement
Abstract: For a long time it seemed that microfinance could accomplish social and financial goals simultaneously and without frictions. But following the international financial crisis and global recession, microfinance experienced its first serious setback starting in 2008. While initially it was assumed that the industry’s problems were triggered by the global crisis and the following recession, a consensus is now emerging that problems are rooted within the characteristics of the microfinance industry as they have developed over time. Problems emerged as some microfinance institutions expanded too quickly, rolled out new products or expanded into different markets without the required institutional capabilities and controls. In order to enter a sustainable growth path, client focus needs to be put back at the core of all operations. A new balance needs to be achieved between social and commercial objectives in microfinance.
Topics: Banking; Emerging markets; Financial market trends; Global financial markets; Globalisation; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!
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16.08.2012
European banks retreating from the US
Abstract: Since the outbreak of the financial crisis in 2007, euro-area banks have been gradually cutting back their exposure to the US market, thereby making room for others to step in. Especially financial institutions from Canada, Japan and certain emerging countries have expanded their US business significantly.
Topics: Banking; Capital markets; Financial market trends; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!
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02.08.2012
Capital market bank funding: (Not such a) brave new world …
Abstract: Since the financial crisis erupted there have been significant changes in the market conditions for banks. The years preceding the crisis were marked by more market-based bank funding, a rapid expansion in the securitisation market, low interest rates and high liquidity, whereas today the market environment is being shaped by strong risk aversion and severely restricted access to the capital market, especially in the case of securitisations. The market for unsecured bank bonds also continues to be fraught with major uncertainty. As long-term trends, many of the changes that have shaped the funding landscape since the crisis began will be lasting impediments to bank financing: bank bonds will be perceived as more risky in future; capital market funding will become more costly for banks on a sustained basis.
Topics: Banking; Capital markets; Financial market trends; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Supervision and regulation
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06.06.2012
Real assets: A sought-after investment class in times of crisis
Abstract: In the wake of the global financial crisis, investors are increasingly turning to real assets, such as real estate and renewable energies. Empirical studies show that, in reality, real assets offer protection from inflation and could contribute to the diversification of a portfolio. However, in contrast to homogenous real asset investments like gold and other raw materials, for heterogeneous real assets such as real estate, ships or offshore wind farms, a comprehensive assessment of the investment concerned, its earning potential and its risk profile, is of major importance. Investment in real assets presupposes a well-informed investor, capable of assessing the various alternative forms of investment. This applies all the more because most real asset investments have very long investment horizons, they often have low fungibility and/or liquidity, and investors frequently have to take entrepreneurial risks.
Topics: Financial market trends; Global financial markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Real estate; Sectors / commodities
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24.05.2012
Macroprudential supervision: In search of an appropriate response to systemic risk
Abstract: Mainly as a direct response to the international financial crisis, a new policy framework is taking shape with the aim to prevent systemic risk in banking and financial markets. The new framework aims to fill a gap between monetary policy and microprudential supervision. Whether macroprudential supervision succeeds will crucially depend on how policies are implemented in practice. As the search for effective tools and policies is still ongoing, it should not be narrowed down prematurely to prudent bank capital and liquidity rules. Instead, a more holistic perspective on financial risks, including risks that stem from monetary policy and non-bank financial intermediation, is needed.
Topics: Banking; Capital markets; Capital markets policy; Exchange rates; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Monetary policy; Prices, inflation; Supervision and regulation
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11.05.2012
Low interest rates pressuring US bank margins
Abstract: With interest rates likely to remain at depressed levels for years to come in most developed banking markets, the focus is on the impact this may have on interest margins and banks’ net interest income. Historical data for the US shows that with a flattening of the yield curve, margins face significant pressure as long-term rates draw closer to short-term rates. This margin compression is exacerbated as funding costs approach the zero bound, while asset yields continue to fall.
Topics: Banking; Capital markets; Global financial markets; International capital markets; International financial system; Key issues - nicht mehr verwenden!; Monetary policy
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