Morning Brief 5.6.20: Nordstrom's reopening won't include cash

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Pandemic's toll on cash

Nordstrom is planning its reopening strategy following coronavirus lockdowns and is heavily leaning on online ordering and pickup and removing cash as an option at checkout.

The retail chain has about 380 stores, and will reopen in phases, reports CNBC, adding the stores will take extra steps to make the shopping experience more digital inside the brick and mortar environment. One of Nordtrom's most popular new features is ordering online to pickup in store, and stores will reconfigure parking lots and entrances to encourage that option.

Nordstrom will also stop accepting cash. The coronavirus has drawn more attention to the decline of cash and potential controversies in banning cash. However, cash is hanging on as an option at supermarkets, which also host remittance agents.

Activating Google

FIS has added Google Pay to its Hosted Payments Page for online merchants, allowing these stores to quickly "turn on" the payment app to speed online checkouts. Consumers can complete checkout by using biometric authentication or entering their Google account password.

The technology comes from Worldpay, which FIS acquired in 2019 as part of an industry trend to combine card issuing and merchant acquiring technology — enabling technology bundles that accommodate omnichannel shopping.

FIS is positioning the Google Pay addition as a coronavirus move, saying the boost to online shopping has made reducing checkout friction and cutting cart abandonment more important.

Standard complaint

The European Central Bank and Swift are squabbling over a delay to data standards tied to international digital payments.

The ECB is asking Swift to address migration risks for European banks due to the move of the ISO 20022 standard deadline from November 2021 to the end of 2022, reports Finextra. ISO 20022 allows more information to be transmitted quickly with a transaction, allowing speedier processing for e-commerce transactions.

The ECB claims the delay complicates other digital migrations tied to the standard, such as messaging protocols. It also says Swift did not consult with the ECB when Swift made its decision to delay that standard in March.

Tight deadline

The Netherlands' central bank has given some crypto companies until May 18 to register or shut down, part of the country's efforts to tighten money laundering laws.

Crypto companies that only do business with crypto companies do not have to register, reports CoinDesk, reporting the rules are designed to address conversions between cryptocurrency and traditional money.

Dutch crypto firms have complained about the rule, saying the regulations are too strict and the timeframe too tight — and could force small companies to close.

From the web

First Dollar raises $5 million for a consumer-friendly healthcare savings account
TECHCRUNCH | Tue May 5, 2020
First Dollar, a healthcare savings platform, launched out of stealth today with a $5 million seed round led by Next Coast Ventures. Using First Dollar, a customer can see where they can get the most savings on certain medical products.

Fintech startup Nium raises equity round; new investors Visa, BRI Ventures
THE BUSINESS TIMES | Wed May 6, 2020
FINTECH startup Nium on Wednesday announced that it has raised a new round of equity funding, joined by new investors Visa and BRI Ventures, the corporate venture arm of Bank BRI of Indonesia.

Banked picks up £2.35M seed to use open banking for account-to-account payments
TECHCRUNCH | Wed May 5, 2020
Banked, a London-based fintech using open banking to enable account-to-account payments at checkout (and beyond), has raised £2.35 million in further seed funding.

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