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Corporations and banks, instead of fearing their "competitors", are investing heavily in fintech companies

According to KPMG's Pulse of Fintech quarterly report, fintech companies raised $ 19.1 billion in investments last year.
In the overall investment structure, over a quarter of investments were made by corporate investors. So, in Asia, this figure reaches 40%, in North America - 25%, and in European countries - does not exceed 12%. KPMG experts explain this by the fact that most of all corporations and banks perceive fintech companies not as their competitors, but as an opportunity to quickly and efficiently upgrade their digital services.
Today, current banks should be wary of international companies such as Google, Apple and Amazon, as well as regional giants Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu, which are focusing their efforts on gaining financial market share.
It is noted that most investors are attracted by payment and credit companies. For example, $ 1 billion was invested in the SoFi alternative lending company last year.
Blockchain technology companies are also popular with investors. This year, according to experts, investors will continue to invest in such startups.
World-famous banks, in particular Barclays, BBVA, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo and Westpac, have been investing in fintech companies since 2011.


The new investment fund aims to nullify the kingdom's dependence on the oil industry

The authorities of Saudi Arabia intend to invest $ 2 trillion in the state investment fund of the kingdom. in order to make it the largest in the world. Such plans were shared by the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defense and the second in the line of succession, Prince of the Kingdom Muhammad ibn Salman Al Saud in an interview with Bloomberg. The main goal of creating this "megapond" is to rid the kingdom economy of oil dependence.
Al Saud noted that the fund will also be formed from the profit that is planned to be received from the placement of 5% of the national oil company Aramco. Aramco's initial IPO is due in early 2017.
The economy of Saudi Arabia, Salman al Saud is convinced, is able to survive a long period of low oil prices. According to him, low oil prices do not pose any threat to the country.
Al Saud added that his country was ready to "freeze" oil production at the level of January 11, provided that the main world producers, including Iran, Venezuela, Russia and all OPEC countries, also go for it.


In January 2016, not a single high-tech company in the United States entered an IPO, which is a kind of anti-record in recent years.

According to the management company Renaissance Capital, the last time this situation was observed in 2011.
Apparently, no positive changes are expected in this area. The dynamics of shares of high-tech companies over the past few weeks does not bode well for any progress this spring.
According to an IPO lawyer from Cooley LLP, about 32 companies plan to enter the market in the near future, but five companies with a capitalization of approximately $ 1 billion have stalled.
Taking into account the fact that the value of many companies in the technology sector has declined, entering the market such companies will not be able to attract large amounts of funds. This will lead to the fact that they will have to resort to reduce their costs, freeze plans to expand the business, as well as the dismissal of staff.
However, this may not happen if financial markets can be stabilized. This year, European banks, a slowdown in the PRC economy, the Bank of Japan's impotence and a collapse in oil prices will become negative factors affecting the global financial system. To this we can add the Fed rates, which are no longer at zero level.
One of the most successful hedge funds, Third Point, is also making pessimistic plans for the stock markets in general and the US financial sector.


Eurozone central banks for the first time disclose information on their net financial assets

The European Central Bank (ECB) reports that the investment assets of central banks in the eurozone reach 490 billion euro ($ 547 billion). For the entire period of the existence of the monetary union, these data were hidden to the public.
Thanks to this information, the details of the agreement on net financial assets (Agreement on Net Financial Assets, ANFA), signed by the participants before the introduction of a single currency, the euro, become known. The agreement contains requirements for the then independent central banks of Europe regarding the handling of assets (in the form of foreign currencies and bonds).
According to Bloomberg, these funds are not included in the amount that the ECB poured into the financial system as part of the quantitative easing (QE) program. Bloomberg does not rule out that the increase in central bank investment assets is due to their printing of the euro to support their governments, although this is prohibited by Eurozone laws.
According to statistics, the growth rates of central bank assets since 2002 have been 5% annually, which exceeds the rate of increase in cash in circulation.
The agency recalled discussions in 2013 on the subject of this agreement. Then the question was about issuing permission to Ireland to exceed the limit of investment assets for a swap with the government. The swap was intended to save the country's banking system.