Finance has long existed under a hierarchical system in which the elite are given far superior services and rates and the lower classes are given sub-par (or no) services. With FinTech the financial game is changing and there is a reason why FinTech is being called the democratization of the financial system.
After all, the glory of modern technology is that we are no longer confined to brick-and-mortar 9-to-5 businesses and we should be using this to the best of our advantage to help better meet people’s needs. And perhaps more importantly, the technology should be used to reach the underserved. FinTech understands this and is using technology to bring banking to a wider audience.
By opening up access to financial services, FinTech is reaching those clients ignored by big banking. Take shift workers for example. In these situations, the introduction of FinTech technology has brought in greater access to financial services and advisors and this allows the system to do a much better job when it comes to meeting the needs of its varied customers and their schedules. Then, by digitizing financial services and introducing the mobile wallet, the billions of people who lack easy access to bank buildings and accounts are finally given a way to better manage their finances.
Or look at what is happening when it comes to credit. Thanks to FinTech, people around the world—whether they are aspiring entrepreneurs or just in need of cash for everyday life—can finally access loans without being saddled with crushing interest rates from predatory lenders. Companies like Aski Capitaland OnDeck are paving the way for entrepreneurs who need to fund their ideas. This opens up so many doors for the underprivileged, giving them the opportunity to improve their lives without being crushed under the weight of payday loans.
Although not directly related to credit, the crowdfunding breakthrough is a similar use of technology that will open doors for the underserved. Through platforms like CircleUp, Entrepreneurs can take their products directly to the public and get them to fund the development process, giving them a way to bypass the burden of the business loan process. For entrepreneurs who are unable to access conventional business loans, crowdfunding can prove to be a vital business tool. In this way, FinTech is funding innovation.
FinTech is also opening up the field of investing by offering robo-advisors. As this technology expands, it will bring investment to the greater population. With low management fees and less of an initial portfolio requirement, the new technology is bringing investment banking into the future and to the sections of the population who were not seen as viable investors by the old system. As well, these advisors can target a specific area of the market (like OpenInvest, which targets impact investing), giving people a sense of control and purpose when it comes to their portfolio and advisors.
Knowledge about income inequality is growing just as the level of it reaches record highs. This knowledge along with FinTech and the benefits FinTech brings with it will help us fight back against rising income inequality…you can bank on it.