Much has been made of “the cloud” over the past few years, with many opining on the coming transformation of the corporate enterprise, and such talk is now focusing on the financial services enterprise. As most IT managers know, many of their business users now consider themselves well-qualified cloud experts based on their decades of iCloud and Android usage for photo storage. So if a trading desk head says the cloud is the wave of the future, be sure to look for touch-screen tablet iTrading coming to a desk near you. (Ironically, well over 10 years ago NYFIX did have a well-received desktop touch-screen trading terminal based on Windows OS and custom hardware, and Orange had a touch-screen turret around the same time—both introduced long before the original iPhone.)
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Nippy U.S.-Russia relations couldn’t show a sharper contrast to (rapidly thawing) U.S.-Cuba relations. Just when Russia, upset at U.S.-led international sanctions against the Eurasian country over its Ukrainian foray and NATO’s expansion at its doorstep, was talking of expanding its defense alliance with Cuba, U.S. President Barack Obama strikes a death knell for the prospect of Russian missiles again pointing at U.S. territory from 90 miles away. It seems Russia will have to find strategic partners with animosity toward the United States in other sinking economies further south (Nicaragua, Venezuela, Bolivia) ... or reconsider its foreign policies altogether, which is unlikely with President Vladimir Putin in charge.
On November 13, 2014, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau published a sweeping proposal of new rules affecting prepaid cards and many more emerging payment products. The 870-page publication―preamble, proposed rule, and official interpretation―puts the payments industry on notice for potential regulatory requirements. After a comment period, rules will be tweaked and finalized, going into effect a year after put into law. The 90-day proposed-rule comment period goes into effect once the Federal Register publishes the documents, giving the industry until early March to speak up. And speaking up is exactly what the CFPB wants industry players to do.
As the United States makes its long-awaited move to EMV, there has been a lot of discussion about the inevitable rise in card-not-present (CNP) fraud. And with good reason—the organized crime rings behind so much of the industry's financial fraud will not simply sit back and take the hit to their profits as the opportunity to commit counterfeit card fraud dries up. They will adjust their tactics. Virtually every other country that has made the move to chip cards has seen a precipitous rise in CNP fraud, and the same will likely be true for the United States.