Google to offer current accounts from next year
Google will offer personal current accounts from some time next year in partnership with banks and credit unions, as the tech titan tries to take a bite out of the personal banking market.
Citigroup and the Stanford Federal Credit Union will run the accounts for the project, which has been named Cache, the Wall Street Journal reported.
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The tech giant’s move into personal banking follows recent moves into the market by rivals Apple and Facebook.
Apple recently launched a credit card with Goldman Sachs, while Facebook launched a unified payments service, Facebook Pay, earlier this week.
Facebook’s plans to launch its Libra cryptocurrency have been met with skepticism by politicians and regulators, who have raised concerns over the possibility of it being used for money laundering.
Broader concerns have also been raised over how tech heavyweights will use their digital influence in the areas of business and economic policy.
“Our approach is going to be to partner deeply with banks and the financial system,” Caesar Sengupta, general manager and vice-president of payments at Google, told the Journal.
“It may be the slightly longer path, but it’s more sustainable,” Sengupta was quoted as saying.
Asked about Google’s planned accounts in a CNBC interview, US Senator Mark Warner said he was “concerned” about the prospect of tech giants such as Facebook or Google entering the field of banking “before there are some regulatory rules of the road”.
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“Because once they get in, the ability to extract them out [will be] virtually impossible,” added the Democrat, who sits on the Senate panel that oversees banking.
“I think there out to be some very strict scrutiny,” he said.
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