Is innovation really rampant in financial services? This week’s must-reads highlight global award-winners and Money 20/20 trends, but also pose the question of iteration vs. true innovation. Are we ready for a blockchain-based credit bureau? Does Square’s new POS system actually matter? Innovation is everywhere in financial services, but how much of what’s new is really news?

Top 10 Retail Banking Innovations in the World

The Financial Brand

From analytics and AI to phygital distribution (yeah, we said “phyigital”), here are top picks from the Efma–Accenture Banking Innovation awards program, an initiative which aims to identify and award the most innovative projects in the retail banking sector at a global level. An impressive 183 banking institutions from 59 countries submitted 467 innovations to this year’s competition.

Digital Transformation in Banking: Iteration vs. True Innovation

The Financial Brand

Efma has more to say on the topic of banking innovation: The 9th Annual Innovation in Retail Banking research report finds, “The biggest threat to the financial services industry is keeping up with an increasingly demanding consumer, integrating new technologies, and using advanced data analytics to provide predictive recommendations,” as we’ve been saying all year on the THINK channel.

Money20/20 Trends: AI, “Everyday Commerce” and Security

Mobile Payments Today

Amid a sea of banking innovations, three major trends emerged at Money 20/20 this year: hyper-personalization through artificial intelligence, everyday commerce through mobile payments, and adapting security in the digital era.

Can Blockchain Be Used to Build a Better Credit Bureau?

CU Journal

Two of the three major credit reporting bureaus have suffered data breaches in the past few years – the most recent of which exposed nearly 150 million Equifax records. This raises the question of whether we’d all be better off with blockchain-based credit reporting.

Square Rolls Out POS System for Retailers


Square announced a new $999 point of sale system that works for any type of business. “This is the first time we’re delivering a product that incorporates everything we’re known for in one place: beautiful hardware, powerful software and a robust, managed payment experience,” said Square’s head of hardware.