Hi 5! The top five fintech stories we’re following today
- Credit Karma launches a new free tax prep service into a competitive market.
- Fintech smells money in auto lending.
Can fintech drive new auto lending?
Startups smell money as the auto industry has bounced back post-2007 (there is an estimated $1 trillion in auto loans outstanding in the U.S.) New partnerships, like the kind Ford struck with AutoFi this past week, are being inked between auto lenders and fintechs. There are still plenty of opportunities to improve the buying, lending, and payment experience in the car market.
Forget fintechs. Focus on GAAF
It’s becoming a more common theme. The financial industry is waking up to the fact that today’s tech giants, Google, Apple, Amazon, and Facebook, are interested in securing their piece of the financial industry pie. A recent Accenture survey polled investors found that a lot of people were definitely open to receiving investment advice from their favorite tech firms.
State of the business: Online lending
There are a lot of new options for businesses to go online to access working capital. Even so, very few businesses are turning to these alternative sources and that means they’re struggling with cashflow. That may begin to change as more alternative lenders and banks collaborate.
Financial media generates growth
Technology hasn’t been kind to the media industry. Financial media also suffers from the same trends impacting the industry as a whole: decreasing engagement, struggling ad sales, and noisy alternatives. But Bloomberg has found a way to restart traffic to its homepage.
As media firms have become leaner, that’s meant there are fewer people on staff to work on new products. The FT created a new special projects editor to help bring good ideas to life. Early results look promising.
The year of the 1099er
As the gig economy includes more people taking on project-based work, a growing number of Americans file 1099 forms when they do their taxes. The online tax software industry is all over this trend, launching new products to service DIYers. Many of these services have free versions, like Credit Karma’s new offering. Credit Karma will make money, just like it does with the 60 million users of its free credit scoring service, by making referral offers for credit cards and loans.
Financial firms are trying to connect our financial dots. That’s why the JPM-Intuit partnership is a big step for data sharing.