In today’s top payment news, retail remains a bright spot in the markets, Ant Financial has rolled out a strategy for digital evolution in China, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a suit against a Cincinnati-based bank.
The stock market rout on Monday (March 9) left pretty much no one unaffected. The headline numbers exhibited a 7.6 percent fall for the Standard and Poor’s 500 Stock Index, but some of the names in our PYMNTS coverage universe fared a bit better than the overall markets — among them, multiple brick-and-mortar retailers.
Banking regulators wrote a joint statement telling banks they would not be punished for assisting borrowers who are contending with the financial consequences of the coronavirus. They said they would provide “appropriate regulatory assistance” to institutions that were affected by struggling clients and late payments.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) filed a suit against Cincinnati-based Fifth Third Bancorp alleging that employees opened accounts for clients without their permission in an effort to reach sales targets. Fifth Third called the allegations “unnecessary and unwarranted” per a report.
Ant Financial, a division of Alibaba, has rolled out a three-year strategy to make its Alipay mobile app platform available to 40 million service providers so they can digitize their offering. Alipay, the largest payment platform globally, is seeking to solidify its position in China.
Biometric verification has become normal for contactless payments but is far from universal. NatWest, however, is closing this biometric gap with a new miniaturized fingerprint reader mounted directly on the payment card. In a feature story, NatWest’s head of effortless payments, David Crawford, discusses the bank had to overcome miniaturization obstacles and fraud concerns when creating its biometric card.
eCommerce could help solve the healthcare payments puzzle. Paul Ketchel, founder and CEO of MDsave, said online platform models could help link patients seeking affordable care with providers as well as simplify billing in addition to payments collection along the way.
Whether or not a recession is around the corner — the economic white water currently swirling is not going to be an immediately solvable problem. As PYMNTS has spoken with innovators in areas such as commerce and telemedicine who are facing the effects of the emergent health crisis directly, a consensus has come to light. Innovators as well as creative players will pull the opportunity from the problem, but the hits are real and likely will get worse before they get better, especially in the U.S. and EU.