原文标题：Open Banking has arrived, whether you like it or not
让我对市场走势感兴趣的是，一些大型金融机构在这一领域处于领先地位，比如花旗银行(Citibank)和德意志银行(Deutsche Bank)的开放API市场(open API markets)，而一些机构则在抵制这种变化。我曾在英国听到一些报道称，大银行让客户的数据共享变得异常困难，因为它们的许可过程非常繁琐和耗时。同样，在PSD2下实施欧洲规则时，几家金融科技公司也发出了抗议，因为每家银行都自行对PSD2作出自己的法律解释，并据此创建各自不同的API接口标准。其结果是，由于市场上的非标准实现，任何想与欧盟银行打交道的第三方都必须为每家银行做独立的、不可复用的对接。
例如，荷兰银行荷兰国际集团(ING)在英国提供了一款名为Yolt的数字银行应用程序，这是首批全面实施第三方接入集成的应用程序之一。Yolt对接了劳埃德银行集团(Lloyds Banking Group)、苏格兰皇家银行(RBS)和汇丰银行(HSBC)的所有品牌以及挑战者Monzo和Starling等。同样，汇丰银行(HSBC)今年5月也推出了Connected Money应用程序，允许客户在一个空间内查看所有的活期账户、储蓄账户和抵押贷款账户，而不考虑提供商。通过开放银行平台，Connected Money程序可以链接到桑坦德银行(Santander)、劳埃德银行(Lloyds)和巴克莱银行(Barclays)等其他银行，这样客户就可以知道在下次发薪日之前他们还有多少钱可用。这一功能被称为“账单后余额”，它显示了一旦支付了普通账单，在发薪日之前他们的经常账户中有多少可用资金。围绕这些主题还开发了其他信息丰富的服务，这使得该行比一些挑战者银行更具挑战性。说到挑战者银行，如Metro Bank, Starling Bank，天腾和Monzo都在围绕API市场和信息服务进行开发，以区分他们的报价。
Ten years ago, I was presenting the concept of Banking-as-a-Service, with the idea that I could find a wide range of plug-and-play software in a cloud-based marketplace, and build my own bank by bringing these pieces of code together into an easy-to-use banking service. A decade later, that vision has come true as more and more Fintech firms offer plug-and-play code in the cloud to make banking simpler and easier. What I didn’t anticipate is that the regulator would push this service, making it mandatory. That’s what Open Banking has become, and Open Banking is no longer just a UK thing, but it’s gone global.
Australia has introduced Open Banking rules that will force the banks to share data with trusted Third-Party Providers (TPPs) by June 2019; Mexico has introduced a Fintech Law; South Korea and Singapore have enforced rules around financial data sharing between banks and third parties; and the USA has seen several banks innovating around open financial structures, although there is no law enforcing them to do this, yet.
What intrigues me about the market movements is that some large financial players are taking a lead in this space, such as Citibank and Deutsche Bank’s open API markets, whilst some are resisting the change. I have heard several reports in the UK that the large banks have made data sharing incredibly difficult for the customer, by making the permissioning process very onerous and time-consuming. Equally, the implementation of European rules under PSD2 has seen several Fintech firms cry foul, as each bank creates its own interpretation, and therefore API interface, of the law. The result is that any third party wanting to interface with the EU banks has to write integration code for each bank, due to the non-standard implementations across the markets.
But these are purely teething troubles as the markets move towards full open banking platforms. Interestingly, those that are embracing the change are seeing positive results. For example, the UK is now nine months into its implementation of Open Banking and, although it has been slow progress, there has been progress.
For example, the Dutch bank ING offers a digital banking app in the UK called Yolt, which has been one of the first to fully implement third party access integration. The service links to all Lloyds Banking Group, RBS and HSBC brands, as well as challenger banks Monzo and Starling. Equally HSBC launched the Connected Money app in May, allowing customers to see all of their current account, savings and mortgage accounts in one space, regardless of the provider. Using Open Banking, the app links to other banks, such as Santander, Lloyds and Barclays, so that customers can see how much money they have available until their next payday. The feature is called ‘balance after bills’, and shows how much is available in their current account until payday, once regular bills have been paid. There are other information rich services being developed around these themes too, making the bank more a challenger than some of the challenger banks. Speaking of which challenger banks, like Metro Bank, Starling Bank, Tandem and Monzo are all developing around API marketplaces and information services, in order to differentiate their offers.
This is why the momentum is building. The Open Banking Implementation Authority (OBIE) shared figures that show 3 million uses of open banking APIs in July 2018, June, up from 2 million in June and just 720,000 in May. There are now 67 regulated providers of APIs, made up of 44 Third Party Providers and 23 Deposit Account Providers. Progress indeed.
Where this leads to downstream is a rich market of start-ups, service providers, banks and non-banks, enriching the services and knowledge about their customers in real-time, all of the time. This will benefit the customer, by telling them more about their digital financial lifestyles, and provide better, more personalised service. Meantime, just one word of caution. If you asked customers: ‘do you want to share your bank account data with third party providers?’, they will probably say ‘no’. In survey after survey, I see this question being asked and typically 80% of respondents have a negative view about data sharing, particularly when it comes to their money. But what these surveys miss is the benefit they get in return. If they had asked instead: ‘would you like us to analyse your data to help you save more, spend less and generally be smarter with your money?’, then most would say ‘yes’.
All in all, the world is moving to an open banking structure where banks share data with trusted third parties, if the customer gives permission, and the march of this change is nigh on unstoppable today. Bearing in mind that most countries are starting to implement versions of these rules as regulations, if you’re not engaging in creating your own banks’ open structures today, then you better start pretty soon. After all, I can pretty much guarantee that an open banking regulation is coming your way sometime soon. Better to be ready for it, than let it be a surprise you hadn’t considered.
This post was originally published byThe Banker magazine.