Every Wednesday, we delve into the latest fintech updates from across the UK. This week brings updates from Moneyhub, the FCA, Airbnb, Klarna and Simply Asset Finance.
Brits dread festive financial pressure
Around 43 per cent of Brits dread festive holidays such as Christmas due to the extra pressure on them financially, payments fintech Moneyhub found in new research.
Moneyhub also found that 41 per cent say they regularly finish the month with no money left in their accounts or are in their overdraft. The findings come after a year that has seen Brits dealing with increased housing costs such as rising rents and mortgages, inflation pushing up prices at the shops and many other increased costs, it has been a tough 12 months for finances.
Kim Jenkins, managing director of Moneyhub API, said: “A third of Brits expect to be in debt in January – a shocking and worrying statistic. Banks and financial institutions can focus on technology to provide smart, actionable insights to their customers in order to help minimise debt, support their saving and build financial resilience. This is important not just for January, but throughout the year. Using open banking and smart nudges, banks can alert customers to personal opportunities for saving, equipping them with the tools and behaviours to help cover the costs of the festive period throughout the year.”
FCA grants permission to Moneyhub
In other news, Moneyhub has also been granted permission to provide Credit Information Services by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
As a result, Moneyhub can now obtain and display a user’s credit file information, including credit score, across its platform.
Dan Scholey, CCO at Moneyhub, explained: “We have always been advocates of making it easy for consumers to see their entire financial world in one place, and a fully holistic view must include credit information. Around 69 per cent of UK adults don’t know their current credit score, and this knowledge gap could be leading to uninformed, and potentially harmful financial decisions.
“Knowledge is key in empowering people to take control of and understand their finances. Becoming a CISP is an important step forward in our mission to work with our clients to enhance the lifetime financial wellness of their customers.”
Airbnb partners with Klarna
Airbnb and Klarna have joined forces to launch ‘Pay Over Time with Klarna’, a new way for guests in the UK to spread the cost of their reservation. The launch is part of a phased global roll-out which will see Klarna and Airbnb offering an alternative way to pay for guests across three continents by early 2024.
First launched in North America as part of Airbnb’s 2023 summer release, ‘Pay Over Time with Klarna’ enables guests in the UK to apply to pay for their next stay in three interest-free instalments over two months.
Amanda Cupples, general manager of Northern Europe at Airbnb, commented: “We’re pleased to bring Pay Over Time with Klarna to the UK, giving guests greater flexibility to spread their payments over a number of weeks or months. Whether you’re booking a solo trip, or organising a get-together with friends, choosing the right payment plan has just become a lot easier.”
UK SMEs failing to prepare for net zero
Almost a third (32 per cent) of UK SMEs have no Net Zero plan in place, despite the government’s target to meet Net Zero by 2050, according to latest research from Simply Asset Finance.
Sixty-three per cent of SMEs are also worried about how much Net Zero will cost their business, while 58 per cent feel they don’t have enough support to achieve their targets.
Mike Randall, CEO at Simply Asset Finance, commented: “The impact of escalating costs on small businesses creates a significant dilemma as they try to balance the growing financial pressure with the desire to grow and future-proof their business. The investment required to reach net-zero is something they are incredibly conscious of, but it was acknowledged as a significant undertaking pre-pandemic, let alone now. The will is there, but unfortunately the means are often not.”