The Weekender

Main Street's Digital Shift, ATM Innovation, PPP Loans Top This Week's News

Main Street's Digital Shift, ATM Innovation, PPP Loans Top This Week's News

It’s the end of the work week, and the PYMNTS Weekender is here to make sure you didn’t miss anything with the latest in payments and commerce news. We have deep dives on Main Street’s digital shift, ATM innovation and PPP loans.

Top News

The Flaw In Demonizing Big Tech

Civilization has progressed enough that many of us know it’s wrong to demonize a group of people due to a personal characteristic, as it isn’t based on evidence or reason, and it simply shows base prejudice. This is more or less what’s going on with Big Tech, however, and even lots of tech that isn’t so big right now.

Demand For PPP Loans Evaporates; $150B Still Available

The funds ran out in a matter of days when the original round of forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans became available April 3. On April 27, when the second round was release, demand had dried up to the point where there is still $150 billion available.

FIs Or FinTechs: Who Will Power Banking’s Big Digital Shift?

The pandemic has sped up the digital roadmap for everyone in financial services, providing for more innovation in the last few months than had been seen during several years. And opportunities exist for digital-first and hybrid models to be successful, as long as they have an unwavering focus on discovering and solving customer problems, according to five observers.

SBA Data Show At Least $20B Of PPP Loans Have Been Canceled

PPP loans amounting to $20 billion at a minimum have been cancelled — many by small companies concerned they can’t spend money in ways that will be eligible for loan forgiveness, calculations of Small Business Administration (SBA) data by Bloomberg discovered. SBA reports show that $510.5 billion in the net amount of approvals on Thursday (May 28) — approximately $2.7 billion under of that for the period concluding May 16.

Trackers And Reports

NEW DATA: Inside Main Street SMBs' Digital Shift

The lockdown of the United States economy quickly and radically changed the way consumers browsed, shopped and paid for services as well as goods — and not all small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) were prepared. Companies that didn’t have online shopping channels couldn’t sell their products, while eateries that didn’t provide online ordering for delivery or pickup couldn’t serve their diners.

Innovating The ATM Beyond Cash

Credit unions (CUs) are upgrading their automated teller machines (ATMs) to offer a broad array of banking services from loan applications to account transfers and beyond in the hopes that having more versatile ATMs will be able to meet the needs of their members as brick-and-mortar branches stay shuttered.

How are CUs utilizing videoconferencing capabilities on interactive teller machines (ITMs) to maintain their branch operations during the pandemic, and how is biometric technology helping them offer more secure, quicker and touchless ATM services?

How To Keep Fraudsters From Scamming Banks Across Every Nook And Channel 

Financial institutions (FIs) are constantly adding novel channels through which customers are able to access their services, and they have to be ready to detect the fraudsters who seek to exploit these access points. FIs need to have the ability to find and thwart fraud, without accidentally sweeping up legitimate clients.

In a feature story, Uma Wilson, executive vice president and director of treasury management, card and bank product UMB Bank, discusses analyzing client behaviors throughout channels to find unusual activity.

An API-Driven Fix To Digital-First Banking 

Open banking and application programming interfaces (APIs) are an important priority for the European Union, with the revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2) requiring the initiatives for the banks in the region. One bank impacted by PSD2 implementation, Germany’s Commerzbank, has been leaning into the use of APIs to create its digital-first banking efforts.

In a feature story, PYMNTS spoke with the FI’s head of API banking, Christoph Berentzen, about how Europe’s embrace of APIs has let banks offer digital banking services to their clients as demand jumps because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Smart Cities Can Emerge Stronger From The Pandemic

One area where the Intelligence of Things (IoT) technology could have the most impacts in the months and years to come is smart cities, with the inclusion of areas such as autonomous transit and smart electrical grids. In a feature story, Michael Lotfy, senior vice president for smart buildings solutions for global electrical technology firm ABB, and Marija Zima-Bockarjova, its smart cities and solutions research and development manager, discuss how smart city systems can assist communities and organizations in becoming more resilient as well as sustainable.

How Faster Disbursements Can Help Solve Patients’ Payment Pain Points

Paper-based disbursements sent in the mail are many times slow to reach patients, presenting a problem for healthcare providers and consumers. But insurance companies, medical providers and hospitals have been looking into how increased digitalization can bolster payment flows and speed up patient reimbursements.

What Legacy FIs Miss About The Need For Cloud-Based Infrastructure

Consumers expect secure and fast access to digital tools. To support that access, banks of all sizes have to create networks that can handle a daily flood of digital transactions and information requests, while maintaining a seamless customer relationship. Cloud technologies is one way to support this mission, but banks have to consider how they are offering these services differently as people transform into fully digital customers, said Ali Niknam, CEO and founder of European digital-only bank Bunq.

Fun, Cool and Otherwise Interesting

Retailing 2020: Five Things To Watch

The pandemic was without precedent when it showed up in February and March, while the phases of its aftermath will also be without a reference point. PYMNTS found five areas and firms to watch as the post-pandemic recovery evolves.

Millennials Are Facing Their Second ‘Once-in-a-Lifetime’ Financial Crash 

The data on millennials’ lifetime earnings potential were already fairly grim long before the word “coronavirus” became a part of everyone’s daily conversations. Millennials were in deeper economic trouble than a fast glance at the American economy would imply, and were unlikely to ever reach the earnings potential of their patients, according to a 2016 paper led by Stanford University Economist Raj Chetty.

Retail Reopening Hinges On Dangerous Discounts

Most of the department store category before opening was deeply discounting inventory to move seasonal products and fuel previous revenue. But Aptos VP of Retail Innovation Nikki Baird is worried about the consequences of the actions, comparing it to the financial crisis of 2008 where retailers responded to what she refers to as a “bloodbath” of discounting.

How To Make It Safe To Fly The Friendly Skies Again

The airline vertical has been especially impacted by the worldwide pandemic as consumers shelter in place have, for the most part, avoided domestic and international air travel. What will it take to get people back into planes?

FinTechs Help Main Street Find Its Footing

Small business owners are quickly finding that there’s more to weathering the volatility than external funding. FinTech solutions are an attractive investment to Main Street entrepreneurs hoping to maintain revenues and stay competitive, with social distancing and work-from-home orders making SMBs move to digital platforms.



Banks, corporates and even regulators now recognize the imperative to modernize — not just digitize —the infrastructures and workflows that move money and data between businesses domestically and cross-border.

Together with Visa, PYMNTS invites you to a month-long series of livestreamed programs on these issues as they reshape B2B payments. Masters of modernization share insights and answer questions during a mix of intimate fireside chats and vibrant virtual roundtables.