Posts Tagged With: banking

Banking Activities of the Future

As you walk into your bank, you are met by a video teller. These robo-banks allow you to connect with financial specialists based on your needs through a virtual concierge and videoconferencing. These banking staff members are located hundreds and thousands of miles away.  Banks benefit from these actions with fewer branches and fewer employees covering customers in many geographic settings.

Other actions being taken by banks and other financial institutions to better serve customers include:

  • A variety of services to enhance the banking experience, such as offering co-working spaces for customers who work remotely.
  • Payment systems in the athletes’ Olympic pins to complete purchases transactions at the 2018 Winter Games.
  • Customers can pay with a facial recognition scan in some retail settings.
  • Financial services offered through Alexa (Amazon), Siri (Apple), and Google Assistant allowing bank and credit card customers to check their balances, pay bills, and send money.

For additional information on technology banking trends, click here.

Teaching Suggestions

  • Have students talk to two or three others to obtain their ideas about: (a) future banking technology, and (b) the setting and services of the bank branch of the future.
  • Have students create a presentation or video that communicates future banking activities.

Discussion Questions 

  1. What technology services do you desire from a bank for your financial services?
  2. Describe actions banks might take to better serve the needs of customers.
Categories: Chapter 4, Financial Services | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Banking at the Post Office

Nearly 90 million people in the United States have no bank account or rely on expensive financial services from check-cashing services, payday loan companies, or pawnshops.  To help address this situation, the U.S. Postal Service is considering a program to provide financial services to the population that is underserved by traditional banks.

The USPS, which already offers money orders to customers, plans an expanded product line that would include reloadable prepaid debit cards, mobile transactions, domestic and international money transfers, a Bitcoin exchange, and possibly, small loans. As a result of their size, USPS loan rates would be lower than pawnshops or payday loan enterprises. Post office branches in low-income neighborhoods could provide services to customers in areas no longer served by traditional banks.

Opposition to this action will occur from the banking industry. However, compelling evidence is offered that many Americans lack trust in or access to banks.

While going to the post office for financial services may seem strange in the United States, about one billion people in 50 countries bank through postal system offices.  These include India, Pakistan, Japan, Brazil, Malawi, and Kenya.

For additional information on banking at the post office, go to:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/08/opinion/the-post-office-banks-on-the-poor.html?_r=0

http://www.economist.com/news/finance-and-economics/21601026-americas-postal-service-ponders-foray-financial-services-put-your-money

https://www.uspsoig.gov/sites/default/files/document-library-files/2014/rarc-wp-14-007.pdf

Teaching Suggestions

  • Have students research the banking services offered by postal services in other countries.
  • Have students create interview questions that they might ask someone who does not use a traditional bank.

 Discussion Questions 

  1. What factors would influence the need for the postal service to consider offering financial services?
  2. Describe possible benefits and concerns associated with the U.S. Postal Service offering financial services.
  3. Other than the postal service, how might underserved and unserved banking consumers obtain financial services?
Categories: Chapter 4 | Tags: , | Leave a comment

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