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Our Weekly Newsletter

Our Weekly Newsletter

Across Instinctif Partners’ Financial Services team, we are always keeping an eye on the key developments taking place across the sector to evaluate their impact on the many businesses we work with. Here we share our picks of the week’s most interesting news, and our expert views.

News you can use

Banks considering virtual internships amid spike in stress-related absences

Banks are considering “virtual internships” as the sector sees its highest spike of stress-related absences since 2008. An analysis shows the past year has seen the highest number of stress-related absences in the sector – one which is likely to rise due to the ongoing pandemic. Incoming interns are facing the same uncertainty, with the outcome of their summer internships up in the air. A survey by the Ivy Research Council found that 18% of financial services firms expect remote internships to be the likely outcome for summer 2020 in response to the continuing lockdown. (From Financial Times and Private Equity News, 6 April 2020)

Microsoft quiet on launch of UK financial planning tool

After securing a flagship deal in the US last week, Microsoft remains quiet on potential plans to launch a financial planning tool in the UK. The tool, resulting from a partnership with banking data start-up Plaid, will allow users to automatically import bank and credit card information to Excel to manage, track and analyse their financial habits. FTRC director Ian McKenna emphasises the lack of threat to any advice firm that already offers a good client portal, adding that the tool could encourage more people to seek advice and guidance. (From Money Marketing, 6 April 2020)

Profit cannot be only motive after pandemic, says BP CEO Bernard Looney

The coronavirus pandemic highlights how it is no longer acceptable for firms to place sole focus on maximising profits, according to BP’s CEO Bernard Looney. In a recent LinkedIn post, Looney suggests taxpayers and governments will expect businesses to “be shoulder-to-shoulder with them” following their efforts in support of firms and employees during this time. His comments show how businesses can expecting to be judged once the crisis passes, which he also admits offers lessons for tackling climate change. (From The Times, 6 April 2020)

Fintechs are launching projects to ease the strain of the crisis

Amid the ongoing crisis, fintechs have been launching coronavirus-related initiatives in a bid to alleviate widespread disruption to daily life. Concepts include the Covid Credit calculator, which helps self-employed workers prove a loss of income needed to claim new Government benefits. Automated payroll platform Pento has also launched a Coronavirus Furlough Calculator to help businesses work out the amount they can claim from Government to support the costs of furloughing employees. (From AltFi, 6 April 2020) 

Under-25s and women face largest financial hit from coronavirus

A study by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) found that young workers, low earners and women are among the hardest hit by the pandemic. The IFS notes that a “remarkable concentration” of people in those groups are employed in sectors that have shut down, raising concerns about the long-term economic implications of the crisis on young people in particular. The study further suggests that the negative effect of the pandemic will be amplified for women, as a disproportionate number work in retail and hospitality. (From BBC, 6 April 2020)

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