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Thanks to an agreement with SIA, BANCOMAT Pay will integrate the Jiffy service, allowing Pago BANCOMAT® cardholders to pay, in stores and online, and to send and receive money in realtime from their smartphone in total security simply by using their mobile phone number.

Georgie Powell founder of SPACE app, a behaviour change programme, outlines the growing issue of smartphone dependency and how forward-thinking companies can help employees to engage with technology more meaningfully

When we use technology consciously it enables us to connect, create and learn. But for many, our smartphones have become a habit which causes us to miss out on meaningful engagement in the real world. We also miss the creativity that comes in idle moments, when our mind is free to wander.

This problem – using smartphones to the detriment of other aspects of our life – has been termed ‘nomophobia’ – a recognised psychological condition prescribed to people who sense fear or anxiety at the thought of being separated from their phone. Users are waking up to this condition.  

Deloitte have found that almost two fifths of population perceive that they are using their device too much. This is significantly higher amongst 35-44 year olds (47%), 25-34 year olds (55%) and 16-24 year olds (56%). In the same report, Deloitte found smartphone behaviours are distracting users, harming their relationships with others and even potentially endangering their health or that of other people’s.

Independent research from SPACE, a digital wellness app, has found that amongst these groups, there is a strong sense of emotion associated with phones, with 28% of users feeling anxious if they are without their phone (compared with the 6% who feel happy).

DIGITAL DEPENDENCY…

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Bertrand Lavayssiere

By Bertrand Lavayssiere, managing director, zeb

The banking industry in 2018 has reached a tipping point: banks must urgently switch from their post-crisis “recovery mode” to a new “action mode”.

Banks need to find solutions for improving cost management and increasing profitability. Set out along the wrong path and banks risk being relegated to a footnote in history. Choose the right strategy and they can be masters of their own destiny. The difficulty, as usual, lies in determining which path is the right one.

One strategic move is about the deconstruction of the value chain horizontally by building utilities leveraging scale in mid/back offices and IT to streamline the operating model and to reduce costs. The German savings bank and cooperative bank sector is a blueprint for this strategic move, which is now being increasingly adopted by larger banks.

Reducing costs thus ultimately means implementing state-of-the-art IT infrastructure, digitalising processes and reducing legacy systems wherever possible – in addition to reducing personnel costs. Ultimately, this drive towards a better IT infrastructure within banks may lead to an increase in offerings such as banking-as-a-service, with some banks ultimately becoming IT companies.

Here at zeb, we have observed that large ITcentres are being built with services being outsourced both nearshore and offshored. Several banks are contemplating whether or not they should become “utility centres” for certain services. Recent discussions amongst Swedish top banks to create a utility for Know Your Customer (KYC) and onboarding processes or initial discussions amongst a consortium of German banks to build a regulatory reporting…

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Fintech Evolution

How has fintech transformed the financial sector?

Martijn de Wever: Fintech companies have excelled in providing a better customer experience with less use of human capital.

Financial firms continue to struggle with information overload and too many legacy systems that don’t communicate with each other – generating a form of ‘data spaghetti’. In applying technology to capitalise on the ton of data that has been captured, Fintech companies are adding value to data that the sector has not been utilising. This use of complex data together with more transparent and user friendly experiences is driving change in the sector as a whole.

As a pioneering fintech entrepreneur, what are the key elements of a successful product?

Martijn de Wever: A great product excels in user experience by putting the user at the centre. Distillation of the actual problem you are looking to solve is essential, and simplicity of information is key.  Too many people take the current status quo as a starting point, which is wrong. You should free yourself from any preconceptions and just try to find the best solution for a problem – and if that is close to the current reality, then that is great. If not, you reshape the reality but never compromise on usability.

How do your products achieve stand out in the increasingly crowded fintech market?

Martijn de Wever:…

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The Beginner's Guide: How Dividends Work

A dividend can be described as a certain amount of money paid by a company to its shareholders depending on the profit made during that particular fiscal quarter. While this seems like an interesting option, it is important to choose reliable dividend-paying stocks.

The profit made by the company is a major factor in how much dividend is paid out to the investors in the company.

One part of the profit is kept aside for the future growth of the company and the rest is dispersed amongst the shareholders. Interestingly, companies do not prefer to reduce the amount they pay as dividend per share as this could lead to panic among the shareholders about the situation of the company. In the worst case scenario, it might even lead to plummeting share market prices.

What Are Dividend Yields

The return offered by any share index or stock is measured using the dividend yield. It can be described as the latest annual dividend obtained by dividing the current share price as a percentage. For example, in the annual dividend is 10p per share, and the share price is £1.00, the yield is 10p/£1 as a percentage, so 10%.

Important Dates To Remember

Dividends need to be approved by the company’s Board of Directors before they are paid out to the shareholders. The following dates play an important role in when the dividend revenues will be paid:

  • Declaration date: This is the date on which the Board of Directors will announce that they intend to pay a dividend. On this date, the Board will put forth a payment date and a date of record.
  • Date of record: Only the shareholders will receive the dividend on or before the date of record.
  • Payment date: This is the date that the dividend is actually paid to all the shareholders.

What Is Dividend Pay-out Ratio?

The dividend pay-out ratio can be described as the percentage of the net income that is paid out…

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