Future of Finance

By Quartz | Exploring the "new normal" in global finance

Globalization failed too many people. Here’s the technology that could help it work for everyone

Last month, global leaders in business, government, media, and technology made their annual pilgrimage to Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum’s annual event. The tranquil mountains surrounding the city stood in sharp contrast to the swirling populist storm that is now transforming …

Bitcoin

George Soros has hired Dawn Fitzpatrick away from UBS to be his chief investment officer

Whether George Soros funneled money to organizers of the Women’s March or not, the billionaire philanthropist has sent the world a clear message about gender equality—by putting a woman at the helm of his family office’s investment portfolio.<p>Dawn Fitzpatrick will be Soros Fund Management’s first …

Wall Street

Four reasons why women need to save more than men do

We live in a time when women have more financial independence than ever before. But the independence may not last—women are coming up short saving for their retirement.<p>There are several reasons why women end up accumulating fewer assets and should be squirreling away money even more aggressively …

Retirement

Warren Buffett credits his extraordinary life to two strokes of luck

Everyone wants to learn how to be successful. Among the most successful, of course, is Warren Buffett, the legendary investor who, with $73.8 billion in net worth, is the second richest person in the world, according the Bloomberg Billionaire Index.<p>A new documentary airing on HBO tonight (Jan. 30) …

Wealth

Dow 20,000 is arbitrary and pointless—just like the Dow itself

The Dow Jones Industrial Average just broke 20,000 for the first time.<p>Traders and investors cheered this historic high of the world’s most famous stock market index, which is composed of 30 of the biggest and best-performing American companies and is frequently used as a barometer of the strength …

Stocks

The most influential female economist says sexism in her discipline is very real

If you really want to piss off the economist Carmen Reinhart, refer to her coauthored research with fellow Harvard economist Kenneth Rogoff as the work of “Rogoff and Reinhart.” (Whoops.)<p>“In economics, the alphabet rules. If the authors are not listed alphabetically, then you are the junior …

Economics

Nigeria’s central bank is warning banks against using bitcoin

Virtual currencies may be the promise of the future of finance, but the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) seems to prefer to keep things real.<p>In a circular distributed on Friday, the apex bank of Africa’s largest economy warned local financial institutions against doing business in virtual currencies …

Bitcoin

Americans on food stamps are getting access to Amazon’s online grocery deliveries

From the middle of this year, the US government is expanding the reach of its food-stamp program—and some of the biggest online retailers are getting in on the action.<p>The US Department of Agriculture recently announced a two-year pilot of expanding the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program …

Poverty

Snap is the latest tech company to take investors’ money and tell them to shut up

Snap, the company behind the ephemeral messaging app Snapchat beloved by millennials, is betting its IPO will be so attractive that, by denying investors basic shareholders rights, it’s daring them not to buy shares.<p>According to the Wall Street Journal (paywall), Snap is planning on selling new …

Silicon Valley

A controversial Russian Ponzi scheme is betting on Bitcoin to relaunch in Nigeria

A month after it suspended operations in Nigeria, Mavrodi Mondial Moneybox (MMM), a Russian Ponzi scheme with over 2 million participants in Africa’s most populous country, is already plotting its comeback.<p>MMM claimed it had to temporarily close operations due to the “heavy workload” on its system. …

Nigeria

Buy and hodl, just don’t get #rekt: The slang that gets you taken seriously as a bitcoin trader

Bitcoin has been on a rollercoaster in the last few days. On Jan. 5 it came within a hair’s breadth of surpassing its all-time high; then it lost billions in market value on fears of a Chinese government clampdown.<p>The traders responsible for these price swings are spread around the world. They …

Wall Street

More Nigerians are embracing electronic payments

Five years after Nigeria’s Central Bank (CBN) launched its Cash-less Nigeria project to reduce the amount of physical cash circulating in the economy, it is finally catching on.<p>Data from Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) showed a significant uptick in the use of Point of Sale (PoS) …

Nigeria

Bitcoin lost $3 billion in market value in 40 minutes

Bitcoin is back to its volatile old self. The cryptocurrency’s price plunged more than 20% in three hours of trading today (Jan. 5), a dramatic correction that occurred within minutes of its nearly hitting an all-time high.<p>The crash was so swift that at one point Bitcoin lost more than $3 billion …

Wall Street

Bewildering pain and desperate hope mark two months of demonetisation in India

It’s been a testing two months for Indians.<p>Forced into long queues at ATMs and banks since Nov. 08, when Narendra Modi invalidated 86% of the country’s cash in circulation, the past two months have been nothing short of a nightmare for the country. Yet, most have braved the inconveniences for the …

Banking

Bitcoin’s bull run faces one gigantic question mark heading into 2017

Bitcoin is within touching distance of its all-time high, having more than doubled its value for the year. Traders are now bullish about an extended rally that could see it surpass its $1,165 peak, achieved in November 2013. But if history does repeat itself, crypto traders would do well to …

Bitcoin

Almost 70% of Goldman Sachs’ employees are under the age of 35

The baby boom generation—people now aged between 52 and 70—is being gradually pushed out of the workforce by layoffs, buyouts, and forced early retirements even as they try to work longer to make up for retirement losses during the financial crisis. But is any employer getting rid of them faster …

Goldman Sachs

The last of New York’s commodity trading pits are closing for good on Dec. 30

Starting in the late 19th century, commodities traders and brokers crammed each day into New York City’s trading pits, shouting, and signaling their way to a deal. They bought and sold contracts for raw materials and agricultural products like butter, sugar, cotton, cocoa beans, copper, and oil.<p>But …

Wall Street

The underpinnings of bitcoin’s bull run look way more solid this time

It’s déjà vu for bitcoin believers. Three years ago, in the dying months of 2013, the cryptocurrency took off on a historic bull run that would push its price to an all-time high of nearly $1,200. Bitcoin is approaching those highs again now, hitting $968 in trading today.<p>Take a look at this …

Cryptocurrency

West Africa now has its own digital currency

<i>Correction: The original version of this story referred to the West African eCFA using blockchain-based technology. It does not.</i><p>Senegal will soon begin using a digital currency in 2017. It’s another opportunity for financial technology (fintech) to help emerging markets leapfrog traditional banking …

FinTech

The SEC accused a software developer of fraud for behaving like a software developer

One of the great workplace revolutions of the last few decades has been the realization that an employee’s productivity shouldn’t be measured by the amount of time spent at their desk. But government agencies have been a bit slower to recognize this sea change.<p>So much so that the inspector general …

Fraud

Snapdeal is now delivering cash to people in India so they can avoid ATM lines

Snapdeal, one of the biggest e-commerce companies in India, is now delivering a new product: cash.<p>More than a month after Rs500 and Rs1,000 notes were scrapped in a bid to combat corruption and terrorism, the demand for physical money remains high. People are still lining up outside ATMs for …

FinTech

Bitcoin’s price is surging again, but there’s another measure that really shows its value

The value of a single bitcoin has skyrocketed this year, and hit $874 today (Dec. 22). It’s not the highest price ever for bitcoin, which traded at $1,165 in November 2013. But with the 2016 rally, the cryptocurrency has achieved a different but related milestone: The value of all bitcoin in …

Bitcoin

Kenyan banks are closing in on what they think will be the perfect M-Pesa disruptor

Early next year, Kenyan banks are expected to unveil a digital and mobile money transfer platform to rival M-Pesa’s longstanding dominance as the scramble for cashless payments intensifies.<p>The plan started about four years ago when banks, in a rare display of unity, discussed establishing a system …

FinTech

A maverick hedge fund billionaire thinks Trump will ignite the US economy’s “animal spirits”

Business under Trump should thrive like never before, says Ray Dalio, the billionaire chairman of the world’s biggest hedge fund firm.<p>Trump’s cabinet of former executives and dealmakers could spark economic growth well beyond what could be expected from tax cuts and new spending priorities alone, …

Wall Street

The race to fix Nigeria’s payments problem just received a big boost

Making online transactions is a process taken for granted as one of the natural offshoots of deeper internet penetration. But, in Nigeria, things haven’t been so straightforward. With several issues including a distrustful and skeptical public plus a lack of early-stage innovation by banks, online …

Nigeria

Barclays is prepared to fire 7,000 low-volume trading clients

In a world where we’re conditioned to believe the customer is always right, it’s jarring to hear of a company dumping clients. But commerce is a two-way street, and when corporations don’t profit from a relationship, they’ll find a way to escape.<p>Barclays is warning 7,000 of its lowest-volume …

Wall Street

Bitcoin doesn’t care what Silicon Valley thinks—it’s trading at a 34-month high

There’s been plenty of news to keep bitcoin down this year, from plunging venture capital investment to rising skepticism about blockchain technology’s viability in the marketplace. Yet the cryptocurrency is trading at its highest levels since its insane bull run of 2013.<p>Today, bitcoin hit $788.49, …

Bitcoin

A rule tasking US financial advisers to act in their clients’ best interest could (thankfully) be repealed by Trump

The Trump presidency will no doubt be full of surprises. And it looks like one of the first could be the rollback of a provision meant to improve the quality of the professional financial advice given to American investors.<p>Starting in April 2017, all US financial advisers must abide by the …

Retirement

Bitcoin is approaching new highs for the year because of India’s demonetization

India’s cash crunch is sending one currency soaring.<p>Since prime minister Narendra Modi pulled Rs500 and Rs1000 notes from circulation on Nov. 8 in a bid to fight corruption and terrorism, the weekly volume of bitcoin trading in India has nearly doubled from prior levels.<p>The increased trading has …

Finance