[alert type=yellow ]Every week at Tradestreaming, we’re tracking and analyzing the top trends impacting the finance industry. The following is a list of important things going on we think are worth paying attention to. For more in depth trendfollowing, subscribe to Tradestreaming’s newsletters .[/alert]
1. Competition in hot pursuit, Western Union continues to lead
Western Union may be 165 years old, but don’t make the mistake of thinking them old-fashioned. The cash transfer giant is staying competitive by
- Maintaining its physical locations – this a big draw for the developing world, in which nearly 75% of all remittances transpire.
- Embracing the digital shift in the remittance market by adopting do-it-yourself online transfers, developing mobile payments, and even enabling payments in bitcoin.
2. BofA targeted by top female banker in ‘bro’s club’ lawsuit
Equal pay for women has been getting a lot of coverage in the entertainment industry of late. Patricia Arquette’s rousing 2015 Oscar speech
demanding equal pay and equal rights for women has allegedly already cost her acting jobs, but has also been linked
to concrete change on the ground; specifically, with the passing of the California Fair Pay Act in January 2016.
Women are now bringing the equal pay fight to the finance industry. However, in lieu of a gala evening that affords actresses the chance to broadcast their message of equality to millions of viewers around the world, women in finance are turning to an equally effective, if less glamorous, awareness-raising tool: lawsuits.
Most recently, a senior female fixed-income banker at Bank of America Corp filed a lawsuit accusing the bank of underpaying women, and retaliating against her for complaining about illegal or unethical business practices by her colleagues.
In a complaint filed on Monday night
, managing director Megan Messina said she is a victim of “egregious pay disparity” relative to male peers, and has been paid less than half the man who shares her title as co-head of global structured credit products. Should Messina win, this lawsuit could trigger similar lawsuits throughout the industry, forcing incumbents to rethink their payment models. Stay tuned.
4. The impact of blockchain goes beyond financial services
In an article for HBR
, futurist Don Tapscott and his son Alex Tapscott scout out the potential disruptive impact of blockchain on all industries as we know them:
“[Blockchain is] the first native digital medium for value, just as the internet was the first native digital medium for information. And this has big implications for business and the corporation.”
As blockchain is increasingly incorporated across industries, we’ll get a better idea of where blockchain is really a superhero, and where it’s merely Clark Kent.
For more on blockchain mania, read on about Thunder
, an open source network that wants to make bitcoin a viable alternative to credit card networks like Visa.
5. How DailyWorth turned a newsletter into a roboadvisor for women
DailyWorth’s 1 million-strong subscriber base relies on the firm’s newsletter for personal finance information. When the team lead by Amanda Steinberg started analyzing the needs of its audience, it became clear that there was an opportunity to launch a powerful, new investment service. Here’s the story
how (and why) the firm built a roboadvisor to service its predominantly female user base.