Copyright 2014

Can your smartphone really handle all your finances?

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Image caption French supermarket Auchan has offered a flash and pay service since 2012

Two fintech projects already up and running as a result of the investment are Ripple and Kabbage.

The former allows banks to transfer international payments securely without the need for a middleman, while Kabbage provides quick online loans of up to £40,000 to small businesses.

But such convenience and flexibility doesnt necessarily come cheap.

A £40,000 Kabbage loan repayable over 10 months - the maximum period allowable - will cost you an additional £11,000. Hi-tech doesnt always mean low-cost.

Fight back

Banks are having to respond to the fintech challenge with innovations of their own, whether that is voice biometrics or mobile codes for authentication purposes.

Some are experimenting with personalised video to improve customer service, while others are expanding the way they communicate, using social media platforms such as WeChat, Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp.

Others are even moving beyond banking. For example, Polands award-winning Idea Bank focuses on providing services to entrepreneurs, including a cloud-based space where people can work, meet and collaborate.

All this innovation should mean that, as Mr Carney said: With time, fintech could mean a more open, more transparent, and more democratic global financial system.

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