FinTech IPO Index Gets 1.7% Boost on OppFi, Huize Earnings 

One day left in the quarter.

And then earnings season begins again in just a few short weeks.

But even over the last several days, as March draws to a close, earnings for the December period continued to sway stock prices for the names in our FinTech IPO Index.

March was a rough month for the Index, which slid 10% for the month (with one day left, to be sure). And the year-to-date gains have been winnowed down to 8.5% as of this writing.  

Among companies that showed gains through the past five sessions (offsetting a 22% loss in Triterras, where no company-specific news crossed the wires), Oportun was up 17%. News came this week that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has informed Oportun via letter that the agency has completed its investigation of the company. The CFPB stated that its Office of Enforcement staff concluded that it would not recommend pursuing enforcement action against the company. As has been reported, the CFPB had been looking into Opportun’s collection practices from 2019 to 2021, along with its hardship program during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Earnings Propel Several Names Higher

Huize was 16% higher. 

The company reported fourth-quarter results that showed that renewal premiums facilitated on the company’s platform were up by nearly 81%.  

The cumulative number of insurance clients served increased to approximately 8.4 million as of Dec. 31, 2022, up from 7.5 million in the previous year. Management noted on the conference call with analysts that these growth rates — with 16% gains in gross written premiums — came even as gross written premiums in the entire insurance industry in China were down 16%.

OppFi gathered 14.4% in the wake of its own earnings report that showed that total revenue increased 25% year over year to $120 million. Net originations were flat year over year to $187 million. 

Management noted on its conference call that in the fourth quarter, the “first payment default rate” for new customers continued to move closer to pre-pandemic levels, down 29% from the second quarter before credit adjustments were made.

Futu Holdings was up 7.3%. Futu’s most recent earnings report, released this past week, showed that the company’s total number of paying clients increased 19.5% year-over-year to 1.5 million. The total number of registered clients increased 17.5% year-over-year to 3.2 million over the same timeframe. The company reported that daily average revenue trades in the fourth quarter of 2022 declined 12.7% year-over-year, but revenues gained 42.3% to US$292.3 million.

Apple Pushes into BNPL

Affirm was up 7.6% in a week that saw Apple officially launch its own BNPL initiative. As noted here, Apple has begun rolling out an installment payments program that’s built into the Apple Wallet, dubbed Apple Pay Later. Regarding the payment option itself, users can split purchases into four payments spread over six weeks while paying no interest and no fees. Users can apply for Apple Pay Later loans of $50 to $1,000, use them for online and in-app purchases made on iPhone and iPad, and then track, manage and repay the loans in Apple Wallet, we reported this week.