To create a financial product that would appeal to younger customers and those without a bank account, Amazon is reportedly in talks with big banks like JPMorgan Chase about designing a checking account-like product. The discussions are in the early stages, and there’s no guarantee the product would come to market, The Wall Street Journal reported.
If the product were to launch, Amazon would serve as a partner to the big banks. In the fall of 2017, people familiar with the matter said Amazon reportedly put out a request for proposals for a hybrid-type checking account from JPMorgan Chase and Capital One Financial Corp and considered their pitches. It is unclear what features the product would have — such as bill pay, check writing or automated teller machine (ATM) access.
If JPMorgan or Capital One were to work with Amazon, the banks could then fend off potential competition from the eCommerce giant. According to a recent poll of Amazon customers by LendEDU, 38 percent of respondents said they would trust Amazon to handle their money as much as a traditional bank.
The move comes as Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase announced in January that they were teaming up to create an independent healthcare company focused on fixing the nation’s healthcare system.
In a press release, the three said they were working on ways to address healthcare for their U.S. employees, with an eye on reducing costs and improving customer satisfaction. To achieve that, the consortium would create a constraint-free independent company that isn’t concentrated on profit-making incentives. Its initial goal, according to the press release, would be using technology to provide U.S. employees and their families with easier, high-quality, transparent healthcare at a reasonable cost.
The companies said the healthcare problem was among the greatest issues facing society today. By bringing three of the world’s biggest companies together, Amazon, Berkshire and JPMorgan hoped to take a new approach to what they view as a critical matter.