Banking Southeast Asia’s unbanked

Southeast Asia is one of the most rapidly developing regions in the world with projected economic growth rates averaging 5.1 percent for member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

31 May 2018

Thailand introduces laws governing cryptocurrencies

A new set of laws governing cryptocurrencies has been introduced in Thailand. According to the government, the new laws aren’t intended as a blanket ban on cryptocurrencies but serve to regulate such digital assets and tokens while protecting investors from the uncertainties of the cryptocurrency market. This new piece of legislation will also come down hard on the illicit use of cryptocurrency, especially in money laundering, tax evasion and unauthorised transactions.

15 May 2018

The digital ledger revolution has begun in Singapore

Ubin is an island located northeast of the Singapore mainland, close to the border between the island republic and the Malaysian state of Johor. Famous for its rustic roads, immaculate beaches and shady nature trails, it is the only place where one could go to relive the Singapore of the 60s, immersed in the simple joys of life, away from the hustle and bustle of a modern-day city lifestyle.However, Ubin has assumed a different character to its name.

11 April 2018

Bananas and cryptocurrency

The world of digital currency has gone bananas!Lao based Bananacoin, is the latest edition to the plethora of cryptocurrencies available in the world today. As its name suggests, it is linked to the golden fruit enjoyed by many – bananas.What is Bananacoin?The Bananacoin Project was co-founded by entrepreneurs, Alexander Bychkov and Oleg Dobrovolsky with the aim of utilising blockchain technology to revolutionise the banana production industry.

6 February 2018

Go-Jek acquires three companies to dominate payment in Indonesia

Go-Jek, Indonesia’s biggest ride-hailing service, agreed to acquire three local financial-technology companies, underscoring its ambition to become the dominant player in the country’s nascent digital-payments industry.The deals bring together Kartuku, Indonesia’s largest offline payments-processing company; Midtrans, the nation’s top online-payment gateway; and Mapan, a local community-based saving and lending network, Go-Jek said in a statement Friday.Collectively, Go-Jek and the three comp

15 December 2017

An expert's guide to navigating the world of Bitcoin

Elaine Ou, a blockchain engineer and Bloomberg View columnist, answered questions about cryptocurrencies from Bloomberg Terminal customers in a TOPLive chat on Tuesday with Julie Verhage, who covers markets for Bloomberg News. Since then, bitcoin has skyrocketed to new heights and Cboe Global Markets Inc. plans to launch bitcoin futures trading on Sunday. Here's a lightly edited transcript.Verhage: Bitcoin and other crypto-assets have had crazy runs this year.

11 December 2017

Singapore central banker sees bubble in fintech hype

Be selective.That’s the message Monetary Authority of Singapore Managing Director Ravi Menon has for pundits and investors trying to navigate the wave of technology euphoria sweeping the financial services industry.While technological innovations such as blockchain and the area of big data analytics can result in powerful applications, people should be wary of some peer-to-peer lending platforms and the rapidly rising values of cryptocurrencies, Menon said in an interview with Bloomberg News

7 November 2017

Hong Kong and Singapore join forces for fintech

Hong Kong and Singapore, which have vied for supremacy as financial technology hubs over the past couple of years, have now decided to join forces.The cities’ central banks have signed a fintech cooperation agreement that will foster collaboration on business referrals, joint innovation projects, information sharing and the exchange of expertise, Norman Chan, chief executive of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority said Wednesday.

25 October 2017

Singapore cryptocurrency firms facing bank account closures

Singapore banks have closed accounts of several companies which specialise in providing cryptocurrency and payments services, according to two local bodies which represent financial-technology firms.Noting that cryptocurrency firms have had similar problems with their banks in other countries, the head of Singapore’s Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Industry Association, or Access, asked the government to step in.“From our analysis, it appears to be common among leading FinTech hubs,” Access Cha

26 September 2017

China to ban bitcoin exchanges, allows OTC trades

China plans to ban trading of bitcoin and other virtual currencies on domestic exchanges, dealing another blow to the 150 billion dollars cryptocurrency market after the country outlawed initial coin offerings last week.The ban will only apply to trading of cryptocurrencies on exchanges, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named because the information is private.

11 September 2017

Can bitcoin stand the test of time?

Earlier this week, the world was bombarded with unfavourable news about bitcoin. Chinese media outlet, Caixin, posted an article that said China is planning to shut local bitcoin exchanges. If the report is true, this would be the PBoC's (People’s Bank of China) second move against cryptocurrency in less than a week. The bank declared ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) illegal on September 4, 2017, which caused bitcoin prices to fall seven percent on September 8, 2017.

10 September 2017

Inside FinTech Conference and Expo 2017

As the world grows smaller and connected, many organisations and individuals become highly depended on technology-based interfaces for various financial services including banking, payments, money transfers, fund-raising and asset management. The impact of technology on finance is changing the world as we speak and FinTech (financial technology) is at the forefront of the next global revolution - leading to greater overall efficiency and productivity.

30 August 2017