Morning Brief 4.20.20: Google may counter Apple Card

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Google card

Google may be revisiting payment cards by developing a mix of virtual and physical debit cards.

The cards would connect to a Google app that would support payments and transaction tracking, and would be cobraded with financial institutions such as Citigroup and Stanford Federal Credit Union, reports TechCrunch.

Google first launched a payment card in 2013 as a way to drive volume to an early version of its mobile payment app, but discontinued the card in 2016.

The card would be a counter to Apple Card, which uses Goldman Sachs as an issuing partner

Google has changed its mobile payments app several times over the years, most recently adding Singapore to its growing markets in Asia/Pacific, entering several partnerships in India, the U.K., and IoT partnerships.

In a statement, Google's PR office said it is exploring how it can partner with banks and credit unions in the U.S. to offer checking account products accessible via Google Pay, and would have more details in the coming months. Google confirmed it is working with Citigroup and Stanford Credit Union but did not detail plans for a card.

Fintech push

Payment firms and non-bank lenders have become part of government-supported small business lending during the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. and the Netherlands, an example Canadian firms hope to follow.

The National Crowdfunding and Fintech Association of Canada has written an open letter to prime minister Justin Trudeau lobbying for a role in capital distribution to small businesses, reports Finextra.

These businesses have digital approval, onboarding and screening technology in place to deliver funds quickly, the NCFA contends. Digital distribution networks are considered key to speed lending to small businesses with cash flow problems.

PSD2 goes green

Swedish digital mailbox firm Kivra is using PSD2's information sharing standards to collaborate with open banking firm Tink to push paperless billing as a green strategy.

The partnership will enable consumers to receive and handle bills and mail in a centralized digital location, supporting invoicing and money transfers.

Kirva hopes the integration will enable faster execution than the Swedish direct debit system, Autogiro, which takes several days to settle payments.

Stable dollars

The coronavirus is boosting U.S. dollar-backed blockchain tokens, Circle contends, adding it's part of a migration to stable assets as the coronavirus spreads.

There's also been a change in focus, as the tokens are used more to support payments for business transactions as opposed to moving funds between cryptocurrency exchanges, reports Coindesk.

E-commerce marketplaces, advertising networks, digital content markets and payment firms are among the business classes that are signing up for Circle in larger numbers, the company told Coindesk.

Virtual partner

Paytm Payments Bank will issue Mastercard virtual debit cards as India's push for non-cash payments accelerates.

Paytm hopes to issue 10 million virtual cards during fiscal year 2020/21, and will also offer a physical card option, reports Hindustan Times.

The card will also cover about one million ATMs internationally, the newspaper reports, adding about 90% of payments in India are still made in cash.

From the web

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THE NEW YORK TIMES | Sun April 19, 2020
If you’ve been affected by COVID-19, you may be eligible for relief in paying that can help you prevent damage to your credit from late payments.

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