The number of cards compromised at US ATMs and merchants rose 39% in the 1H 2017 vs. the year-earlier period according to FICO. The firm also tracked a 21% rise in compromises of ATMs and point-of-sale (POS) devices in the US in the 1H 2017 vs. the same period in 2016. This report highlights an intensifying problem for consumers, business customers and for community banks. Consider that the number of compromises is on track to set a new high for the FICO(R) Card Alert Service, which monitors hundreds of thousands of ATMs and other readers in the US, according to the...
Forrester research is forecasting online holiday sales will increase by 12% this year. On average it also expects holiday shoppers will spend $689 for online gifts - an 8% increase over last year. While bankers still have plenty of time to shop for the holidays, you may want to compare these numbers with your own shopping habits for fun. Bankers are always looking at the habits of their customers so today we examine Generation Z to see what surfaces. A recent study by The Center for Generational Kinetics gives several insights into how Gen Z (1996 to somewhere...
If you want to target rich bank customers, you may want to see what devices they use. In a recent Global Web Index study of tablet users, 44% were more likely to be in the top 25% for income. They were also more likely to be parents and fall into the age category 35-44. It is pretty amazing what you can find out when you crunch the data. Artificial intelligence, or AI, is basically data crunching on steroids. It is used today for a wide range of tasks including medical diagnosis, electronic trading and aviation. It's even quickly becoming a game-changer...
Scientists seem to be near a cure for the common cold. You heard us right - the cold may be on the way out. For eons, scientists have tried to get rid of this annoyance, but the issue has always been that the virus for the common cold mutates quickly so it has been difficult to target. Now, scientists are targeting the actual genes of the virus, which appear to have the same decoding mechanism in all strains. Hope is near that this discovery will lead to an effective drug in about 10Ys. Imagine never having a cold again!...
Using something known as paper spray mass spectrometry, researchers from the University of Surrey have developed a new fingerprint test that will accurately detect cocaine usage and identify the user within seconds. It even works after handwashing, which makes the test even more robust and effective. Technology breakthroughs are happening everywhere and the banking industry often seems like ground zero. Interestingly though, a study finds this may not be the case with many banks. When it comes to data analytics, for example, many banks are sorely missing the mark. Just 13% of senior executives and independent directors responding to
Good news! Scientists from MIT and University of Leeds have found the ozone hole is actually decreasing and is expected to close entirely by 2050. Their research attributes the decrease to the ban of chlorofluorocarbons from aerosols, but it was still a big surprise, since there had been spikes in ozone depletion recently. Those spikes were later attributed to volcanic activity vs. aerosol use. Just as the ozone hole has been getting smaller, so has the pool of bank directors in recent years, as expectations placed on them have intensified. To help alleviate some of the burden, the Fed recently sought...
We found research by the US Sentencing Commission on recidivism among federal offenders interesting. It looked at offenders who were either released from federal prison after serving a sentence of imprisonment or placed on a term of probation in 2005 to see how many of these people reoffended. It found about half (49%) were rearrested within 8Ys for either a new crime or for some other violation of the condition of their probation or release conditions. If you are wondering how we can improve this, consider another study that found there is a 25% decrease in the likelihood of re-offense...
A recent review of national survey data by SDSU and Bryn Mawr College finds 18Y olds are waiting to engage in adult behaviors such as driving, getting an after-school job or drinking alcohol. Only 67% of teenagers say they tried alcohol between 2010 and 2016 vs. 93% who did so between 1976 and 1979. The influence of the virtual world has no doubt influenced some of this behavioral change, but some experts believe an increasing affluence has facilitated this trend as well. As these young customer behaviors and preferences change, bankers now realize that banking channels need to change too....
Lately, it seems everyone is binge watching something. Whether you are churning through Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad, or something else it can be fun. In fact, according to Deloitte, 73% of people have binge watched and the average time they spend doing so is five hours at a clip. The bad news - other studies have found the more you binge watch, the lower quality of sleep, greater symptoms of insomnia and higher fatigue. The way people behave is interesting and perhaps that is one reason behavior analytics are being used more in banking and the broader corporate world. Many...
Novartis recently received FDA approval for the US market's first gene therapy - where immune cells are taken from a patient, reengineered and then reintroduced to fight their cancer cells. Novartis' Kymriah helps to fight acute pediatric lymphoblastic leukemia. Although this approval is seen as an important milestone in clinical medicine transformation, there are still questions to answer and the price tag of $475,000 for one course of treatment is not feasible for widespread use. However, it does point to important progress here perhaps. In banking, digital payments are also making progress. Here, community banks are beginning to offer mobile wallets...
Being popular in high school can take a toll later in life it seems. Consider a study by the University of Virginia that found people who were considered popular in high school had greater social anxiety than those with a smaller group of close-knit friends (also had higher self-confidence). It goes to show you that being cool can occur in many forms and over many time periods and each one can impact the trajectory of one's life. Speaking of trajectories and being cool, at least when it comes to the corporate world, look no further than Amazon. More specifically, community banks...
Credit card skimmers are becoming more tech savvy but also more lazy. They are using Bluetooth technology to effortlessly capture lists of credit card numbers as they are often swiped at gas stations and outside ATMs, but more often than not, they are also using the default device name and passcode. This makes the skimming device easy to identify - with a new app. Of course, the smart skimmers will soon rename the device and choose a new passcode. The skimmer risk game is always changing. Similarly, the credit risk management landscape is ever-changing. It would be tempting to get...
The latest census data shows that both men and women are getting married later in life - men are waiting until they are almost 30 and women are delaying marriage until 28. This trend has economic ramifications as people usually get married, then buy a house and after that, have kids. Getting married also combines household resources and provides a buffer for unexpected financial downfalls, such as job loss or house foreclosure. This reminds us of the relationship of community banks with commercial real estate (CRE) lending - deeply committed but with many seeking a buffer. The OCC's latest report
Community bankers should note that robots can now form teams. Researchers worked on a solution to give robots not only a central-processing unit to problem-solve, but also censors that allow one machine to take over leadership for a team of robots to work together. Doing so gives the team flexibility in that if one breaks down, the others can still continue on. There are many potential applications for this technology, from business logistics to military operations. While we don't necessarily think a bank board comprised solely of robots would make much sense, some bankers we know might say something else
A potential new hack nicknamed DolphinAttack has been found by researchers in China. It reportedly records and sends unauthorized commands to digital assistants at an ultrasonic frequency. Just like dolphins, such frequencies are not detectible to humans but are easily heard (transferred) by devices. Researchers found they could give high frequency commands to most digital assistants including Alexa, Siri, and Microsoft Cortana. How this plays out with all the work going on in the biometrics space is yet to be seen, but it is interesting. As the banking world looks to biometrics as a way of eliminating passwords, pin numbers
New research in Scientific Reports indicates there may be a health hazard from tattoos that has not previously been observed. It seems researchers have found high levels of metals circulating in the body and concentrating in the lymph nodes that can be traced back to tattoos. Under the research, scientists observed stained lymph nodes in two tattooed cadavers and found heightened levels of several metals, including toxic mercury in one of them. The next step is to study the actual health effects of this residual ink from tattoos. Community bankers don't need to get tattoos to feel the potentially toxic
A new type of "pen" produced by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin has been shown to detect cancer in 10 seconds with 96% accuracy. This amazing pen does so in lung, thyroid, breast and ovary cancer cells. It provides critical information to surgeons in real time to more accurately remove all cancer cells. Researchers say the next step in this evolution is to decrease the allowable sample size to make surgery more precise. Maybe regulators have been reading this too, because the FDIC has moved to add more precision to its instruction book. It updated its FDIC Risk
Scientists have found that the Zika virus can be used to combat brain cancer cells in adults. You heard right - a particularly aggressive form of brain cancer known as glioblastoma seems to be attacked by the Zika virus. So far, this otherwise deadly virus has successfully diminished these aggressive tumors in mice, while leaving other brain cells untouched. Human trials are still at least 18 months away but tests in the lab show early promise. To be sure, the difficulty for bankers in deciding on a payments strategy pale in comparison to curing brain cancer, but it is still
The top 10 most expensive homes for sale in the US add up to almost $2B. The home that tops the list is worth $350mm in Bel Air, CA. It is on a sprawling 10.3 acres and its claim to fame is that it served as Jed Clampett's home in the television show The Beverly Hillbillies. But, one of the most interesting listings was a home in CO that boasted "real dinosaur footprints" on the property. No matter what size home you live in, you might need to move to something more expensive when it comes to protecting your bank
Just recently scientists came across some 6,000 year old terracotta jars with dried up wine at the bottom. These were found in a cave in Sicily and look to be the oldest evidence of winemaking. It would seem the Italians even beat out the French, earning their reputation as the first Europeans to produce wine. For those interested in buying wine, payments were no doubt made a lot less expeditiously back then than they are today. After all, how many sea shells can you put in your pockets? Today, strives are being made for even greater efficiencies with the continuing
You may not realize it but research now finds people check their phones 47xs per day. That much touching also provides many opportunities for germs to accumulate on our phones. In fact, a new study finds phones can have 10xs as many germs as a toilet seat! Yuck. The good news is that most of these germs are not harmful, but some are. Of course, experts say keeping your hands clean is the best germ prevention. So, as you read our update on the OCC's semiannual risk report, you may want to reach for the antibacterial bottle and give it
Being a workaholic is bad, right? Well, a new study recently reported by the Wall Street Journal finds the problem is not necessarily working long hours, but working a lot and not being engaged. Researchers presume that workaholics who enjoy their work reach out for support when needed, which helps mitigate health risks such as high blood pressure. This is a good thing since bankers may find themselves working longer hours due to ACH and wire fraud. Schemes to perpetrate ACH or wire transfer fraud, including corporate account takeover, are a big concern because they tend to have a greater impact
A new study by John Hopkins gathered tracking device data from 12,500 people for a week. It found 19Y olds have the same activity levels as 60Y olds. That's right, younger people these days are sitting around playing videos or doing homework, rather than getting out and running around. The research finds it isn't until the 20's that activity levels increase, only to then decline again at 35. Since physical activity is known to reduce stress, you may want to think about initiating a company baseball team or running club for financially stressed employees. We bring this up today because
You may not have thought about it, but astronauts in space need to be very resourceful. After all, you can't just open a door and take out the trash in space. Gross but true, urine is already recycled for drinking, but there are now efforts to incorporate yeast with it to provide nutrients to astronauts and even form a type of polyester for 3D printers. Makes you want to jump on a spaceship and head to the stars! In banking things can be tough, but at least you don't have to turn urine into polyester like Buzz Aldrin. That said, the
A link between yoga mats and infertility was implied through a Harvard study that evaluated flame retardant exposure in women at a fertility clinic in Boston. These toxins can be absorbed both through the air and by touch. While yoga may not be your thing anyway, cyber threats are computer toxins that affect everyone. When people talk about protecting their bank's information, they usually talk about technology--firewalls and secure software and encryption and the like. But according to Alex Stamos, one of the most prominent chief information security officers in the high-tech industry, enterprises should be focusing more on the "human"
A new study published in the National Bureau of Economic Research addresses the "mid-life crisis" that has become somewhat clich?. Based on surveys from 1.3mm people in 51 countries, this clich? may have scientific grounds. The study found that the lowest point of life's satisfaction comes around 50, with the high points around the early 20's and then again at retirement. Regardless of your age, you don't need to feel unhappy about the end of the LIBOR, as there are alternatives which could prove even better. You've probably heard the chatter about replacing LIBOR as the benchmark for financial transactions.
The Fed New York recently reported that we have officially surpassed the US household debt record from its height of $12.7T during the 2008 recession to $12.8T in 2Q 2017. In case you are wondering, the main drivers of this climb were student and auto loans, while mortgage and credit card debt both decreased in the same timeframe. This may give you food for thought while contemplating lending activity including credit card offerings. While many community banks currently offer credit cards, it could be argued that this hasn't been a hot area of focus. But, as the economy rebounds, this trend
A Bloomberg analysis of company earnings calls and other corporate events for the most recent quarter shows the top 3 things executives are most worried about based on analyzing the transcripts. It finds the term Amazon was mentioned the most by far. Over the past 90 days in the analysis, Amazon was mentioned almost 400% more often (635x) than President Trump in second position (at 162x) and wages in the third position (at 111x). No matter how often you mention things at your bank, as an industry, bankers talk a lot about cybersecurity risks. That is because it is scary and
A small clinical trial in Australia could have large ramifications for the peanut allergy population. In a trial performed by the Murdoch Children's Research Institute, 48 children were given increasing amounts of a probiotic along with peanut protein once daily for a year and a half. At the end of the test, 82% were deemed tolerant and 70% had long-term tolerance 4Ys later. This brings us to another issue that seems to require the tolerance of bankers. Late last year the OCC said it planned to issue special purpose national bank charters to fintechs that seek them. That lit
Did you hear about the "brain-eating amoeba"? This may sound like something out of a 1950's science fiction movie, but in fact, it has shown up in real life. An LA teenager was the latest case last year. Often found in southern states, the amoeba comes from warm, freshwater bodies of water. Once inhaled through the nose it is very difficult to detect. The good news is that only 40 cases have been reported in the last 10Ys. Something that doesn't have to be as bad as the "brain-eating amoeba" relates to employee assessments. Although many people struggle to find the
Since you are most likely drinking a cup of Joe this morning, we thought we would update you a little on the price of that cup of coffee. This year's El Nino and its increased rainfall - up to 400% over normal in some areas - have greatly affected the top coffee-producing countries. As a result, coffee (currently at $1.30/lb) is believed by some experts to possibly hit $3.00 later this year. If this directly translates to your cup of coffee, that could mean your $3.00 cup of coffee could hit $6.90! This may lead you to savor your
Interesting research by the National Bureau of Economic Research reveals that children born in September excel over their August-born peers. It was reported that September-born children were 2.1% more likely to go to college and 7.2% more likely to graduate from a competitive college on average, than those born in August. We thought this knowledge was interesting and may be useful to you at a future point in time perhaps. Along these same lines, if you find yourself (and your bank) in need of a way to store other important information to use later, we might suggest considering
Bankers often think their industry is feeling the most heat from all this technology and demographic change but what about movie theaters? Sure, they don't have to deal with regulators like you do, but original content and on demand internet streaming from multiple sources are taking a toll on performance. These days, iTunes, Netflix, Amazon and now Facebook have all launched video content streaming and it all seems to be negatively affecting movie theater sales. This year, consumer spending on streaming video is expected to exceed that at movie theaters by over $2B, according to a PwC forecast. As social
Bug burgers are now being sold in Switzerland. Apparently, there has been a change in the food and safety laws, which opens the door to insect-based foods. That means all you tourists out there can now eat insects such as crickets, grasshoppers and mealworms along with your Swiss cheese. Whether this will take off as the latest trend for foodies or just gross everyone out, we will all have to wait and see. For bankers, eating bugs may in fact be easier than trying to figure out the ins and outs of cyber risk ratings. Of course, bankers all know about
New research by the American Psychological Association found people who did hot yoga twice a week were 3x less depressed and stressed than those who did no hot yoga. Now it is probably difficult to tell whether sweating buckets was the main reason for this difference or something else. But it is certainly interesting enough for scientists to follow up. For those who were wondering - the scientists did not test other types of yoga or exercise for this study. As you think about ways to contort your community bank to remain competitive, you may want to consider an example from
A Stanford study suggests that if you simply think you are fit, you are more likely to live longer than if you actually are fit. Researchers looked at data collected over 12Ys, which included medical history, physical activity data and questions such as how active people were compared to their peers. People who "thought they were less active" were associated with a statistically significant higher risk of death at 71% more than those who "thought they were more active," after adjusting for real activity levels. This obvious balance of mind and matter may also get you thinking about the balance
Drinking alcohol reportedly increases your risk of skin cancer. That's right, research reported in the British Journal of Dermatology finds there is a clear association between how much a person drinks in alcohol and how likely they are to get non-melanoma skin cancer. Some project that people who drink more booze might also engage in behaviors that lead to getting sunburned, while others say it is too early to tell. Nonetheless, to protect yourself the next time you plan on having a few cocktails, you might want to grab an umbrella, put on long sleeves, a hat and slather on
The Daily Meal has some advice when it comes to losing weight. Specifically, when you are trying to lose weight and hit a wall or plateau, there could be perfectly rational reasons. Among them: you might not be drinking enough water (the body needs water to break down fat), you might not be eating enough fats (low fat foods can leave you hungry) and you could be eating too much protein (the body stores excess protein as fat). Banks too can sometimes hit a plateau when it comes to satisfying customers it seems. Consider for instance that while direct banks
The journal Science reports researchers have uncovered evidence of a previously unknown family of asteroids that appear to be the oldest known objects in the universe. The asteroids are 4 billion years old and are floating around out there in space. For comparison, the universe itself is thought to be about 4.6 billion years old, so these asteroids are pretty old indeed. As your bank explores the present situation and projects into the future during strategic planning this year, we have some ideas to help you perhaps. While it may be tempting to postpone the strategic planning process in favor of
How funny is this? It seems seven Roman Catholic priests walk into a bar (actually a pub) and approach the bartender for a beer. The bartender takes a look at the group and tells them they cannot be served because they are wearing fancy outfits. It seems the bartender mistook them for a stag party (an all-male party held for men getting married where everyone drinks heavily), which in Britain apparently often involves dressing up in costumes (which is where this bar/pub is located). This true story was corrected by the pub once a manager saw what was going on,
The much anticipated total solar eclipse will happen today. However, only a select few get to experience a total eclipse. It starts at 10:16 a.m. PST in Oregon and will continue through 8 states - for the first coast-to-coast solar eclipse in almost 100 years - before it ends in South Carolina. It is a lucrative event to be sure. Airbnb apartments are going for as high as $7500/night in Salem, OR, and there is a plethora of eclipse-branded swag priced at a premium. This makes us realize that there could be eclipsed opportunities in banking. Some of you
Bankers know that demographics are changing and the impact that can have could be a big one. What you may not know is that things are moving quickly indeed. Consider that Pew Research finds 85% of people now get their news on a mobile device vs. 72% 1Y ago. Further, a whopping 67% of people age 65 and older get their news on a mobile device vs. only 43% over the same period. Clearly things have shifted quickly across all demographic cohorts so bankers too will have to adapt their marketing approach in turn. Given so much talk about Millennials, today
The police across the country not only protect us all as citizens, but they also do some pretty nice things above and beyond the call of duty, from time to time. We loved hearing the story about a 4Y old little girl whose family had just moved into a new house in CO. The family went to a community event and at that event the young girl approached a police officer. She told the officer she was worried there could be monsters in the new house and she asked the officer to come and check to be sure. The police
While the fog was still trying to lift in San Francisco, the 2nd day of the Executive Management Road Tour kicked off. Finance and risk were the first topics on the agenda. Here we discussed the results of a PCBB survey of community bank CFOs and Risk Management Officers that brought to light the main concerns and areas of strategic focus. The top four concerns for CFOs were 1) new technology 2) required compliance 3) acquiring new customers and 4) remaining competitive. Showing proactive planning for the latter two concerns, many bankers in the room raised their hands when asked
Today and tomorrow, we bring you some reflections and insights from our Executive Management Road Tour held in San Francisco, co-sponsored by a leading accounting firm, RSM. This year we decided to bring in another market-leader in their industry, RSM Accounting Firm as a co-sponsor, to share their expertise as well. The theme of the conference was overcoming today's challenges and capitalizing on tomorrow's opportunities. Our 17th annual community banking event brought in nearby bankers from CA, WA, AZ, CO and NV. It also brought in bankers from as far away as AK, ND, NE, AL, TX, IA,
Google has reportedly reached yet another milestone in its digital dominance. It has reportedly found that its artificial intelligence (AI) robots are now more accurate at identifying and blocking extremist videos online than humans. Its AI identified 75% of offensive videos before users reported them. That is amazing, but it also makes you wonder where all of this digital expansion and customization is ultimately heading perhaps. On the topic of more quickly knowing things about customers who interact with your bank perhaps, technology is making leaps and bounds there too. After all, it is no surprise that brochures and print ads
Identity theft is ugly. In fact, Javelin Strategy & Research finds in their 2017 Identity Fraud Survey that there were 15.4mm US fraud victims alone, resulting in $16B in losses. Meanwhile, card not present fraud jumped 40% over the prior year. This isn't surprising when you consider yet another survey by OnePoll. It found 71% of respondents write down their user names and passwords, 52% know at least one other person's PIN, 40% say at least 1 person knows their user name and password, 25% have never changed their PIN and 10% say they have given a bank card and
Statistics show the IRS audited about 0.70% of returns filed for the year of 2016. Of course, that is the average and the percentages begin to soar the more you make to almost 20% at the highest compensation levels. For its part, PwC says the purpose of a financial audit for a company is to form a view on whether the information presented in the financial report, taken as a whole, reflects the financial position of the organization at a given date. Among things auditors do not do is they do not check every figure in the financial report; judge
Since bankers are in the money business, you may find it interesting that researchers at Utah State University found students who completed a basic financial education course were more responsible with their money. After just one course, this group outperformed those who did not take the course by having more self-control and an improved risk tolerance than those who did not take the course. Now you can brag about how much of an impact being a banker can have on improving society as a whole! As with having financial savvy, understanding more about the world of cybersecurity is also important these
Prevention highlights some key benefits people can get from walking just 30 minutes per day. They include such things as: a better mood, improved creativity, increased metabolism, a 20% to 40% reduced chance of stroke, a 30% lower risk of cardiovascular disease, fewer varicose veins as you age, a better digestive system and better focus on goals. We will be back to finish this discussion in a moment, but first we are heading out for a 30 minute walk around the block. Ahh...back at the desk again. As seen above, the value of walking is clear but what about the value
Did you see the news that researchers now believe there could be a whole lot of water sitting under the surface of the dry, old, crusty moon? It seems researchers from Brown University have been able to detect water molecules using pictures of the moon's surface and reflecting light somehow. The bottom line is that if this is true, we could live there, have oxygen to breathe, water to drink, water for growing food and hydrogen for creating rocket fuel to come and go. It sure is interesting how things around us can change so quickly just by taking a
Bankers know the value of the data they hold, but one key issue revolves around the best way to clean and access it all. Consider research from International Data Corporation (IDC) that projects worldwide revenues for big data and business analytics will soar to around $151B this year (+12% vs. 2016). According to IDC, banking is one of five industries making the largest investments in 2017 in big data and business analytics so it is the subject of our discussion today. Big data, which includes not only data gathering and analytics but also human behavior patterning and complex risk
Almost all US banking institutions offer remote deposit capture (RDC). That makes sense when you consider a recent remotedepositcapture.com survey of financial institution executives. It found 76% of respondents say the benefits of RDC "far outweigh" the risks and costs and another 20% say the benefits "marginally" did so. That is pretty good for any product and bodes well for RDC too - despite much higher BSA and AML costs over the years. Most banks know they have USAA to thank for being able to offer customers the ability to deposit checks remotely. You see, over a decade ago USAA employees
Deloitte did some work recently that looked at shifting consumer behavior when it comes to food and shopping. It found the top attributes surveyed consumers ranked in importance around food safety were: free of harmful elements (62%), clear and accurate labeling (51%), clear information (47%), fewer ingredients (42%) and nutritional content (41%). In food as with other shopping activities, this tilts toward a trend of greater buyer control, a desire for better information and a driving focus on what matters to the individual, it would seem. When it comes to online shopping, research shows consumers will often "abandon" the process in
A study by PwC finds 62% of companies surveyed expect cyber risk to cause disruption in the next 3Ys but only 9% say they have a high or very high cyber risk maturity. Clearly the data shows there is room to improve in this area and community banks are aggressively taking steps to do so as well. Cybersecurity is often in the news. However, one of the latest issues to arise is somewhat new and concerns mobile banking apps. Cybersecurity experts have discovered vulnerabilities with the implementation of encryption connecting mobile phone apps to bank servers. This is concerning indeed as
Good news - the IRS reports fewer taxpayers reported identity theft in the first 5 months of this year (107k) than in 2016 (204k) and 2015 (297k). It seems better risk management techniques that include: improved coordination between the IRS and private sector tax preparers, better technology filters, limiting the number of refunds that can be send to a single bank, and other factors have all helped reduce this risk over time. Bankers know all about risk management and new governance, risk and compliance (GRC) changes are coming down the pipe in the next 12 months or so. That means community
Have you heard there are now inexpensive cameras that provide a 360 degree view? That's right - you can now pan around an image from the sky to the ground and all points around. Imagine the possibilities - monitoring construction sites to track completion in real time, viewing all areas of the vault, training, product marketing and a host of other applications. The cost of these cameras has come down to only $500 bucks, so look for more amazing videos coming soon with a 360 degree viewpoint. Technology keeps advancing and according to Accenture's "Banking Technology Vision 2017" report,
We found out recently about a scam involving certain food delivery companies and restaurants. It seems some food delivery companies said they offered food from restaurant X, but when ordered online an entirely different restaurant Z was actually cooking the food for the delivery firm. Obviously this situation means you need to be careful about what you order, from whom you order it and also who delivers it, to be sure you are indeed getting what you want. There are lots of risky things in life to be sure and one that bankers don't always think about relates to previous
LexisNexis research on fraud finds merchants believe the following: reducing fraud can help increase my company's sales (48%), lower fraud rates increase customer loyalty (44%) and they believe it costs too much to control fraud (20%). Clearly this data points to both the opportunity and risk of fraud and its ancillary drivers for both customers of banks and banks themselves. As banks step up anti-fraud defenses, research suggests it may come at the expense of customer loyalty. In the zeal to verify transaction data like identities, banks can wind up annoying the very customers they are trying to protect. Verification processes and
Facial recognition has made some huge strides in recent years. In fact, MIT reports face detecting systems have jumped in China and are used to provide access to facilities, track down criminals, track movement within a building, transfer money and a host of other things. It won't be long until this technology sweeps the world as it can provide increased accuracy in recognizing people and in speeding transactional flows. This technology and many others are key reasons why community banks must keep moving forward with their plans to grow and evolve. This is despite unprecedented levels of change in recent
Research by Princeton and the University of Chicago finds men ages 21 to 30 spend much less time working and much more time playing video games than men 31 to 55. The data finds hours worked for the younger group fell 12% from 2000 to 2015, while it declined 8% for the older cohort. The study also found those who stopped working average 520 hours per year on the computer and 60% of that time is spent playing video games. Speaking of things people do related to computers, in 2015 Juniper Research estimated that cybercrime would cost businesses $2.1T globally by
We searched Google for the word "good" and got back 6.8B results. We then repeated the process for the word "evil" and got back only 609mm results. We were quite pleased to see that Google's algorithms are so smart that good wins out in the battle vs. evil. As with all things in life where this battle is occurring, good bank technology teams have also been fighting to beat back the evil doers out there in the cyber world. In this fight, some are turning to the field of biometrics. Today, most banks safeguard customers' sensitive data with passwords, but a
A Visa survey finds the average person spends $2,746 per year on lunch. It seems people eat out about 2x per week on average at a price of $11.14 per meal. That leaves packed lunches or meals at home for the rest of it at an average of about $6.30 per meal. For those keeping score, the data shows it costs about 43% less to eat at home or brown bag it than to eat out. That said, what's the fun in that? As you ponder where you may get your lunch today, we give you something else to think
It used to be that when you hit 65Ys old you could retire and feel pretty comfortable where you were. These days though, research by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) finds people are working longer. The BLS found that as of the end of last year about 18% of the workforce was age 70 to 74 and another 8% were age 75 or older. Reasons vary, but one certainly has to do with wealth management. When it comes to wealth management, fee-based income has been an important focus for banks over the past 10Ys. One way to do so is
Whether you are going on vacation or have already been on one, we find a recent survey reported by CNBC from LearnVest interesting. It found 66% of Americans say they spend more on a 1 week vacation than they do on a month's rent or mortgage and that they typically pile up $1,108 in debt doing so. That means it takes the average person 6 months to get back to where they were before going on vacation. Ah well, bankers are under so much stress we hope you are spending more and staying longer to recharge. Unlike the rest and
A recent article by Concur identified the biggest job related annoyances that have surfaced in the past 20Ys or so. They include: smartphone sounds, unnecessarily replying to all in an email, having awkward web conference calls, over sharing links, pressuring co-workers to share your creations with their personal networks, sending emails to colleagues on the weekends, slow computers, sharing critical information verbally instead of through email or otherwise documenting it, connection requests on social media from co-workers and old technology solutions. In banking there are many other annoyances beyond bad employee habits and one of the spookiest relates to cyber
In a twist that is certainly giving Exxon and other gas and oil companies' gas, France announced it plans to end sales of gas and diesel cars by 2040. Of note, France's goal is well behind Norway (2025) and India (2030), but is nonetheless a big move toward ending fossil fuel usage it would seem. It looks like electricity will be all the rage in the next 10Y to 25Ys or so. In similar fashion, sometimes new accounting rules can also give community bankers indigestion. It therefore comes as a pleasant surprise that a new interpretation of a FASB rule could
Keep your eyes open around the bank. We say this because a new American Express OPEN survey finds 18% of employees say they have stolen someone else's lunch from the office refrigerator. This is certainly a sad state of affairs, so let's hope the next time you open the fridge this hasn't happened to your lunch. Speaking of open things, today we zero in on recent UK and EU legislative developments focused on making "open banking" a reality in these markets in 2018 (and then probably the US). Starting next year, European banks must facilitate access to account information through
Good news for all of those coffee drinkers out there. New research published in the Annals of Internal Medicine finds a direct correlation between coffee drinking and a reduced risk of heart disease, stroke and liver disease. A 16Y study found men who drank 3 or more cups of coffee per day lower their risk of death by 18%, while women saw an 8% decline. Drink up! In other good news, 1Q17 was a good time for community banks too, according to the FDIC's Q1 report on how 5,401 community banks are faring. In many categories, community banks outperformed
Here's a weird thing - kids fight about all kinds of things, but money isn't one of the biggies. In fact, a CNBC report finds only about 15% of adult siblings say they fight about money. Of note, for the group that does fight about money, the survey found 68% said parents were the cause (how they provide financial support, divide inheritance and other factors). We figured as a banker you would like to know what your customers are doing, so we share this today. Speaking of sharing things you might want to know about, we switch our topic to
Really small things can sometimes really help humans. Look no further than a discovery made by the University of Southampton. There, researchers found nanostructured glass can be used to record and retrieve data. These small glass disks about the size of a quarter can hold 360 terabytes of data. Also, this storage device can handle heat up to 1,000?C without an issue. Basically, the research indicates companies should be able to store and save their data at room temperature for about 13.8B years. That is a really long time obviously, so this finding provides a greater possibility in solving the
For eons, people have stared up at the night skies and wondered when or if we might travel to a habitable planet. Roll forward to this year and astronomers report finding just that. Even better, this planet known as Proxima Centauri or Proxima b is only 4.24 light years away. It orbits the closest star to the sun, is about the size of the Earth and it may have water. This discovery is pretty interesting if you ask us. In another interesting thing more directly related to community banking, we focus our energies today with some methods and madness around finding
In a great news story, scientific researchers at London's Royal Marsden Hospital have reportedly been able to dramatically shrink tumors related to ovarian cancer. A reported 70% of patients with a specific molecular target responded positively to the drug. Scientists are calling this the biggest breakthrough in ovarian cancer in a decade and that is good news indeed. In banking, technology experts have been seeking good news when it comes to defending against security breaches. According to Identity Theft Research Center, last year saw a 40% increase in reported data breaches, including the largest in history affecting a
While searching for a cure to cancer, scientists this year uncovered the cells that make hair and also turn it grey. That is good news for those who have gone bald and want to grow their hair back and for those seeking to look younger. Scientists say the breakthrough could one day solve both issues. On a similar front, bankers everywhere have been researching how best to leverage their branch network and the staff therein. While not as fancy perhaps as growing hair or staying young, we know many bankers out there that would have more of both if
A new study by Penn State researchers finds the sooner babies are put in their own room the longer they will sleep. That's right, babies that didn't sleep in the same bedroom as their parents slept for longer stretches of time (about 45 minutes longer). The information runs counter to recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics, who say parents should share a room (but not a bed) with babies for 6 months to 1Y. It is something to think about perhaps but be sure to check with your pediatrician to get professional advice. In banking, the professionals say many