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UK Fintech News Round-up: The Latest Stories 13/10

Each week we take a look at the latest stories from UK fintech. This week UK high-street banks are no longer trusted by nearly half of their customers and almost half of all transactions to be contactless by the end of 2022.

External finance used by four in ten businesses across the UK· 

More than four in ten businesses in the UK were using external finance in 2021 but a lack of local investors means economic potential continues to be wasted across the UK’s Regions and nations. The British Business Bank’s first annual Regions and Nations Tracker reveals that regional disparities persist particularly in access to equity finance and private debt.

Core debt products including overdrafts, loans and credit cards are the most used forms of business finance in all regions and nations of the UK, but equity finance and private debt can support companies with the potential for rapid growth.

Catherine Lewis La Torre, CEO of British Business Bank, said: “The lower flows of finance in certain regions and localities reflect a population of businesses operating with fewer choices. These gaps in growth finance are undoubtedly holding back ambitious entrepreneurs and lead to wasted economic potential. This is something the British Business Bank is committed to changing.”

The West Midlands has been named the country’s fastest-growing tech sector 

According to a new government report released ahead of Birmingham Tech Week, the region has been recognised as a top performer for digital growth and is predicted to create an additional 52,000 roles in the sector over the next four years – a bumper increase of 55 per cent since 2019.

Tech growth in the region grew by an average of 7.6 per cent a year between 2014 and 2019, the fastest region in the UK. Going forward it is expected to generate at least £2.7 billion for the local economy by 2025.

Kim Leary, Birmingham Tech Week Chair, said: “The tech sector in our region is booming. We have a huge number of successful start-up and scaling businesses and a growing ecosystem powering fintech to EdTech.

“Everyone has been working hard to shine a spotlight on the West Midlands so there’s a real sense of celebration and collaboration across the City. For me, this is particularly exciting to see and I’m proud that Birmingham Tech Week is able to play a vital role in this.”

UK high-street banks are no longer trusted by nearly half of their customers

UK high-street banks are widely distrusted and prioritise profit, not customers, according to a new consumer survey commissioned by non-fiat banking platform Tally. Four in ten (42%) of those polled believe traditional banks make their money through “hidden charges”, while 51% say the big banks do not put customers first.

Distrust of mainstream banking is widespread but more prevalent in the younger generations who are open to alternative financial services and products. Of the 2,001 UK adults surveyed by Opinium, almost a third (28%) say they do not trust high street banks. This rises to 38% of 25-34-year-olds.

Cameron Parry, Founder and CEO of Tally, said: “There’s a disturbing lack of transparency when it comes to the incumbent banking system and it’s understandable why most people have little idea of how they are being used by banks to make money. People should be able to rely on the money in their bank account to maintain its value over time and stay in their control at all times.”

Almost half of all transactions to be contactless by the end of 2022

Contactless spending is expected to account for almost half of all transactions by the end of 2022 (47%), as it becomes the most popular payment method for the first time, according to new research.

The Life after Covid: Prospects for online retailing, physical stores and how we pay report, carried out by the Centre of Retail Research (CRR), examined the pandemic’s effect on the way UK shoppers pay for goods.

The study shows that pre-pandemic in 2020, chip and pin was the most popular payment method, accounting for over a third (37%) of all transactions in the UK. During the same period, only 17% of all payments made were contactless. However, between 2021-2022, chip & pin payments are forecast to decline to just 25% of all purchases and cash payments will see a sharp decline, accounting for just over a tenth (11%) of all payments by the end of 2022.

The UK has the 9th highest rate of crypto owners 

Ethereum Bitcoin Blockchain Image Source: The Motley FoolNew research from BrokerChooser reveals the countries where the highest % of the population owns cryptocurrency. The UK comes in as 9th with 4.95% invested,  with Ukraine topping the list with almost 13% having invested

The study analysed the countries with the highest number of cryptocurrency owners to reveal those areas where it is taking off the fastest and accelerating towards widespread adoption and usage.

The results show crypto ownership is spread somewhat evenly around the globe with countries in Europe, Africa, Asia and North and South America all appearing in the top ten.

1/2 of Brits can’t remember last card payment they made

The UK contactless payment limit rose to £100, however, personal finance experts, Ocean Finance, are worried about the implications this will have on Brit’s money memory….

After surveying 1,000 Brits about their money memory, they uncovered that Brits are becoming financially forgetful due to their reliance on tech i.e. contactless payments, auto-fill passwords.

Sarah Neate, Editor-in-Chief of Ocean Finance, said: “While the rise in fintech has made us more reliant on it than ever – from using contactless payments to auto-password fill – unfortunately, our research has found that this is affecting our ability to remember and recite our own important financial details.

“Our research found that over half (52%) of Brits couldn’t remember the last payment they made on their debit or credit card. It’s important to stay on top of this info – to better budget and avoid getting into any financial difficulty due to lack of available funds.”


  • Polly is a journalist, content creator and general opinion holder from North Wales. She has written for a number of publications, usually hovering around the topics of fintech, tech, lifestyle and body positivity.

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