FinTech, or financial technology, is a term used for companies that offer financial-related services to their customers while utilizing and innovating new technology. The most well-known and widely used companies include Acorns, Coinbase, CreditKarma, and Stripe. These are all example of companies that have used technology as their competitive advantage against banks and large corporations. As technology continues to evolve and the tides continue to change, here are the top fintech trends in 2018:FinTechs are moving away from a single service model and are offering more services through partnerships, mergers and acquisitions. As banks and large corporations recognize the success of FinTech startups, we are seeing an increase in partnerships in a desperate effort to adopt the new technology. Successful FinTechs are now offering an expanded range of financial services to their customers. For example, this past year, CreditKarma introduced tax return filings. Credit Karma bought onepricetaxes.com and partnered with Metabank to facilitate the tax return process. Additionally, Acorns launched their retirement account by buying Vault, a company that offered a retirement savings solution. If a FinTech wishes to survive, it must expand its services by acquiring other single-service companies.FinTechs will face diversified and increased regulation from governmental agencies. As new laws are put in place, it will become more difficult for startups to navigate new regulations – especially if the regulations vary by jurisdiction. Additionally, current regulations can be unclear as the laws have not caught up to the technology. Fortunately, France has recognized this and plans to set clear regulations to cultivate FinTech startups.FinTechs will continue to adopt the Blockchain. To make transactions more transparent and reduce fraud, FinTechs are among the first industries to utilize Blockchain technology. While some companies like Coinbase have been integrating the Blockchain into their systems from the beginning, some are just catching up. By 2020, 77% of FinTechs will be using the Blockchain.Ready or not, the world is constantly changing and new trends are always emerging. The FinTech ‘shock’ seems to be residing and the world seems to be acclimating to these powerful startups. These top fintech trends of 2018 are already shaping the world we live in.
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