Global Trends For the Financial Service Industry

As the economic crisis continues to unfold, the financial service industry faces serious challenges. The crisis is rooted in continuous imbalances, including long periods of low interest rates, rapidly rising asset prices, and massive credit and savings imbalances. The 2007 and 2008 Reports from the World Economic Forum predicted these changes as continuous risk to the market.Earlier decades of exceptional growth and capitalism at its best have now caused the market to adapt to tighter credit, growing government intervention, slowing pace of globalization, and no economic growth. With increasing regulations in the United States and decreasing availability of credit, the industry faces a significant risk of stunted growth. The global recession is also affecting the financial sector because of capital markets and decreased aggregate demand, according to Max von Bismarck, Director and Head of Investor Industries.This article will provide leaders, employees and investors in the financial service industry with five unique and timely trends to keep in the forefront of their growth strategies for the next five years. These five key trends will shape the post financial crisis in a holistic and systematic manner.FIVE KEY TRENDSGLOBAL BANKING. According to the World Bank, although many banks such as American Express, Citibank and JPMorgan Chase conduct business in multiple countries, they are relatively regional in the United States. In order to grow, the financial industry will have to infiltrate emerging markets. For companies that have a more aggressive growth strategy, the spread to emerging markets such as Africa and Asia presents unparalleled opportunities for profit and increased market share.IT PLATFORM SHARING. Network World confirms that financial service firms’ business strategies must be altered for the new dynamics and intricacies of today’s market. Immediate access to information and integration along product lines and geography are a must for future success. With the need to supply information to a global market, firms must decrease cost. One cost effective initiative is the use of platform sharing; like cell phone companies that collaborate with local companies in order to decrease cost and increase access, financial firms can do the same.

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E-BANKING. A special report from The Economist sees that with 3.5 billion people with cell phones and an expected 10-20% year over year growth, personal and business banking transactions are conducted through cell phones more and more. Thus, E-banking capability is quickly becoming an increasing requirement in order to compete in the marketplace. E-banking capabilities provide companies with essential flexibility and differentiation in the market through Internet-based service applications.MOBILE MONEY. The increase of mobile phone usage in emerging markets makes mobile money a safe, low cost initiative for the financial sector. It is an easier way to transfer money to family and friends, money is sent, and payments and withdrawals can be made without ever going to a physical bank or payment center. M-Pesa, an early developer of mobile money, concluded that mobile money “has enormous social and economic benefits.”SELF-SERVICE. Self-service and the customer should be a primary focus for firms in this new financial service world, according to IBM. AppViewXS is a self-service portal firms can purchase, so customers can check the status of their account and gain instant access to available services. Customer questions and concerns are addressed more quickly, states an IBM representative. This technology automates many processes; the result is that staff workload is reduced while representatives operate faster and more efficiently.Financial service firms need to have sustainable, steady expansion in the emerging markets in order to grow in the future. Deloitte and Touche Research reports that financial service firms have not positioned themselves to capitalize on more geographically dispersed opportunities. More than 93 percent of the executives interviewed for this report acknowledged that their firms “are not operating in a globally integrated fashion.”The same report states that financial firms need to invest away from veteran or mature markets and toward emerging markets because “by 2025, veteran markets will be rivaled by other markets with faster growing economies and increasingly sophisticated financial product appetites.” USA based firms can look toward Japanese and African markets for expansion opportunities. Kennedy Consulting analysts believe that the market will rebound from the global financial crisis in 2011, but there will not be any return to the robust levels prior to 2007 until much later in the decade; hopefully, the five key trends in this report will help the leaders, employees and investors in the financial service industry to look toward a robust sound future.In addition to growth strategies, in the 2002 Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, Henson and Wilson discuss the extreme changes that have occurred in the financial service industry and how many firms are trying to develop and execute successful strategies based on innovative technology and customers. Aside from the regular ups and downs of the financial world, technology and innovation will always prevail as the win-win for the financial service industry. Because online banking has become the norm for most customers, technology will be very important in these firms’ strategies.With the customer at the center of most trends in financial service firms, creating new values for their current and potential clients beyond current expectations will be a top priority. The need for convenience mixed with technology makes mobile money a great initiative in the emerging as well as the developed markets. Many firms have speed pay, the ability to pay without swiping the card, as part of their credit card services. An embedded chip in the credit card enables payments to be made by putting the card close to the payment processor. Mobile money will be an expansion of payment and money transfers without the need for a card, the need to go to a physical bank, or to use Internet banking. Payments, transfers, deposits and withdrawals can be made with a cell phone.

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The World Bank concurs that innovative technology and an increase in e-business strategies will lead to much lower costs and greater competition in financial services. Internet and related technologies, the World Bank affirms, are more than just new delivery channels; they are an inexpensive, different, and very effective way to provide the same services. Since financial service firms must grow organically, build customer loyalty, and accommodate the customers’ expanding needs for services and convenience, partnerships with new technology businesses will allow them to lower their expenses and be competitive.Established firms such as Amex, Citibank, and others can partner with groups such as the wired tech savvy Google Alumni who are not averse to risk and who own fledgling technology businesses that are reshaping the industry with a new wave of innovative products, write Spencer Ante and Kimberly Weisul of Business Week. Mobile Money Ventures is one such fledgling company that is a provider on the forefront of alternative financial service products. Small companies such as these are able to provide well-known financial firms the wherewithal to open in emerging markets where there is a need for cooperation with other firms in order to attain then obtain the local customer base.Today’s competition is fueled not just by profitable customers, but also by the firms that are the most efficient and cost effective. Procedural and cultural clash will result from expanding into unknown markets as seen by the history of Citibank in Asia Minor. But in the long run, tighter regulations, new technology and improved business processes will cause expanding in emerging markets not only to change the demographics of the clients (both geographically and core clients), but also to better the global economy and the future of the financial services industry. Keeping the previous trends at the forefront of managers’ strategic plans, financial firms will rebound bigger and better than ever.

Financial Services on Craigslist – How to Avoid Trouble

Each day, more American consumers turn to Craigslist.org. Most are looking to buy, trade, or sell, but you may be looking for something else. That is why the classified website also has a section for services offered. In that section, you will find a wide range of financial services. Unfortunately, you will also find that most are scams. How can you avoid them?Use your best judgment. If you are seeking financial help, you may be desperate. Desperate to make extra money fast and desperate to get rid of your debt. Frauds prey on this. A lawyer or accountant who offers to go over your finances to create a get out of debt plan is likely legitimate. However, someone who offers to get rid of your debt within 24 hours or a posting that claims you can make $500 a day stuffing envelopes, is nothing more than a scam. No matter how desperate you are, rely on your good judgment to make wise decisions.

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Read all Craigslist postings carefully, as this is another easy way to avoid financial scams. Be on the lookout for those that provide you with no solid information. They just say “get out of debt in 24 hours,” or “make $1,000 in one day.” Sounds great, but they don’t tell you upfront how you can do this all. Why? It is usually something illegal or impossible and they don’t want you to know until it is too late. Too late may be after you paid a fee or handed over your personal information, such as your social security number.Do additional research. When hiring the services of a financial expert, it is best to go with a company or someone who has received certification, such as certified account or tax preparer. Why? These individuals should have a business name, which you can easily use to search online. Look at the website for the Better Business Bureau, consumer reporting websites, and scam alert websites. Search with the company or individual name and get the real deal.

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Search more than just your local Craigslist city page. Craigslist is city based, meaning you can only search one city page at a time. This makes it easy for scammers to target you. If you live in Orlando, you are unlikely to search the Craigslist.org page for Delaware. However, doing so can alert you to a scam. See the same links and listings posted? It may be a sign of a national scam, where individuals all across the country are targeted. In terms of financial assistance, it is best to opt for local help. Meet your financial planner or accountant in person.

The Importance of Financial Services Technology and Banking Software

Financial institutions like banks, security companies and other lending institutions must have some type of system in place that can manage their staff, customers and sensitive paperwork. Financial Services Technology and Banking Software is a necessity for any financial institution if they wish to make their services run smoothly.

Financial Services Technology / Banking Software

Banking software should address the clerical aspects of any business, fund disbursement, collateral maintenance and management. It should be in place to regulate trading, securities, lending, interest rates and changes that are constantly happening. It should also have applications for customers, staff and management.

Benefits of Collateral Management Software

This type of software is used to reduce cost, decrease time, speed up loan processing, track customers, staff and paperwork. It also allows for staff analysis, it reduces duplicate data storage, and it offers electronic storage. It incorporates document linkage and tracks cash flow, and offers payment solutions and application modernization. Banking and collateral management software brings less risk and it helps with decision making.

Purchasing Software

Financial Services Technology and Banking Software can be purchased through online sources. There are several reputable companies that will offer a free consultation that will evaluate the customers business and determine the software that is appropriate for the business. Whether it is a large institution or a small business, there is a collateral management software package out there. It is best to do the research of the software company to determine if they have the years of experience, references, favorable reviews and the customer service to back it up.

Conclusion

Banking Software has improved over the years and it has been upgraded to include securities, investment areas, loan processing and several trading applications. Customer applications, financial portfolios, staff paperwork, market interest rate, and current management solutions are all available through the right software. Any type of baking software should reduce cost and make every aspect of the business come together with automatic updates and easy transition between departments.

Decreasing processing time with applications is a necessity for any efficiently run banking institution. Time is money and in today’s economy any way to cut down unnecessary cost is welcomed. Time management, money management, interoffice communication and interchanging quickly between financial applications are needed to run a financial institution. A financial institution wants to be able to get the customer in and out quickly, but with complete satisfaction and financial banking software allows them to do that.

Technological Transformation of the Banking and Financial Services Sector

Our life has been transformed by the positive effects of technology. Technological innovations have simplified our life. The changes are visible in every sector. The Banking and Finance sector are among one of those sectors which have completely changed due to technological innovations. Nowadays, we use several advanced banking and financial services like Internet Banking, ATM Transactions, Core Banking Services (CBS), Electronic Funds Transfer, and Cashless Transactions while shopping. These are just a few examples of the changes experienced.The banking services mentioned above have become a common way of life. A few decades ago there were not even a concepts as such in the banking and financial services sector. More recently, people used to hesitate while using these types of services. They were concerned about the security of their personal information as well as their money. But, secure security implementation techniques in the delivery of such services, packed with time sensitive results encouraged people to leverage the benefit of these services and the use of these services has increased year in year.

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To provide a interactive and user friendly service, banks and financial institutions have adopted the most recent technological trends. Queuing at banks is a thing of the past; nowadays customers can enjoy various facilities at the doorstep of their banks and at other locations. Phone banking and SMS banking services can also keep customers updated with the status of their money, investments and offer an array of additional services.Consumers can use most of the banking services anytime and nearly everywhere. You can transfer funds, pay utility bills, deposit your insurance premiums, and shop online with the assistance of online payment facilities and technology to access these services. Stock or share trading is also not spared with the changes in technology Stock brokers or even everyday normal buyers can have an almost instant up-to-date update and status of the market status of stocks of their interest. They no longer need to wait for newspaper, news channel or need some fancy program.

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Most consumers have accepted these significant change in the banking and finance sector. The early adapters are more experimental and they are more willing to accept anything that can make a significant difference in their daily life. One of the best examples of the change in consumer behavior is the global popularity of social networking websites like Facebook, MySpace and the micro blogging website twitter. Just another reflection of how consumers are more readily accepting technology and innovative changes to enrich their life’s or make it easier and more convenient.

3 Tips on Choosing Christian Financial Services

Christian financial services can range from investment help to credit counseling to budgeting and debt relief. However the common factor between all of these is that they must be based on Biblical principles. As Believers in Christ Jesus, each of us must be a solid reflection of what God desires for our lives. Everything from our actions to our finances is affected by our choice to follow Christ. How you choose to handle your finances will directly impact your relationship with God. Therefore, it is crucial that you choose the correct guidance and coaching to help you make informed decisions that will open up the rich abundance God has promised to us all as followers of His teaching. Having debt in your life is a poor reflection of a proper relationship with God. Debt reflects the opposite of a giving heart, instead proving that there is a seed of greed. It is choosing to make a sacrifice of the future for present wants. Tithing is one way to help balance the money in your life, but there is much more to Godly finances than giving back to God what is rightly His. Simply take a look at how much Jesus taught on finances. In God’s economy, He is the central figure, it is our duty to Him to learn to properly manage the tools He’s given us for success in every area of our lives. Did you know that there are over 2,300 verses directly relating to finances in the Bible? That’ a big number compared to less than 500 on faith! We can gauge our commitment to solid, Biblical finances by how fervently the Bible focuses on them. Don’t allow other things to steal away your focus on what God desires for you. What sort of things are taking away your time to really get a grip on your financial situation?

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As previously mentioned, Christian financial services abound. There are many people who do not have your best interests at heart who are trying to take advantage of honest hardworking folks because of their belief in God. As Christians, we are an easy target. The Bible tells us to be wary, as we will be persecuted for our beliefs. Don’t assume this doesn’t happen in the financial arena as well. Whether you are searching for a Christian finance coach or help getting out of debt, here are some simple tips that will help you to stay on the straight and narrow.1. Make sure whomever you seek advisement from is a properly educated, certified and qualified professional who shares your beliefs and core concepts. First and foremost, be certain you are dealing with a mature Believer who can help you obtain your financial goals while respecting and agreeing with your Christian faith. Experience, reputation and qualification are of the utmost importance.2. Shop around and try to find a company or individual who can meet all of your financial needs. Be prepared for great success as God promises us, and go with someone who can follow you and guide you through your financial growth.

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3. Plan ahead. Knowing what you want out of a situation before you enter into it is a great way to find success. Determining what your financial commitments and priorities are before you meet with your advisor or seek services will insure that you are getting the most for your money. Knowing what your goals are financially, will help you to get a head start on success. Allocation is a very important part of financial abundance.There are many Christian financial services, tools and resources available to us as Believers in the Lord. Remember, God desires each of us as His followers to have full and limitless abundance, if only we will be good stewards of what He’s provided. Make sure and pair up with like-minded individuals who are supportive and creative when determining what is right for you and your family concerning finances. After all, our goal should be to hear God’s words, “Well done, good and faithful servant.” Matthew 25:21