Travelling Malaysia Part IV: Getting To Know The Local Entrepreneurs

I began my last post in this travelling Malaysia series by saying that the more time I spent in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, the more I liked it.

Well, forgive me for sounding like a broken record, but a few days on that rings even truer!

I think that the first week to ten days in any city is not enough time to really get to know a new place – which is a shame because a week to ten days is all most of us get when we spend time abroad. Read more

10 Of The Hottest Destinations To Buy Property Overseas

In our recent series of articles we have looked at how to open a bank account overseas, how to arrange an overseas mortgage, and how to calculate tax on an overseas property.

So, with the hard work done, let’s indulge ourselves a bit and take a look at some of the best overseas destinations for property buyers, and some of the hottest properties on these markets. Of course, we cannot cover all of the best properties or give you all the facts in just one article, and we would urge you, wherever you do decide to buy, to take good advice and complete as much research as you can before you make a purchasing decision. But that said, this could be a great place to start your search!

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How Can I Secure A Mortgage On An Overseas Property? An Overview By The Money Cloud

Most of us have been tempted, or even given serious consideration to buying a property overseas at one stage in our lives, and rightly so!

For some of us the temptation is just a passing fancy; but for an increasing number what can seem like a wild and exotic decision at first can be, provided you do your research thoroughly, rooted in good sense, and not nearly as hard to achieve as some people will try to convince you it is.

If you are committed, sensible, realistic about what is achievable and know who you are dealing with, you may be surprised by how straightforward it can be to acquire a wonderful property abroad using a mortgage product. Read more

I’m Moving Abroad – Should I Open A Local Bank Account?

A local bank account can be a lifesaver when relocating abroad.

Relocating abroad is something that many people will do at least once in their lives, and generally speaking, it is a valuable life experience that allows you to experience a new culture, enhance your career prospects and even make you a more well-rounded person.

Even in today’s modern, digitalised world, however, there are certain hurdles that you must jump through and rules to comply with that you must understand if your stay abroad is to be a success. Read more

Is Santander’s 100% Digital Openbank A Template For The Bank Of The Future?

Santander launched its latest product, the “100% digital” OpenBank last week amidst much fanfare and some bold new features and promises. Currently it is only available in Spain, but is expected to be rolled out internationally soon.

So, after 15 months in the making, and having been re-built from scratch, can this re-launched product of Santander’s be seen as a blueprint for the way the bank accounts of the future will operate? Read more

A Goldman Sachs-backed Digital Payments Startup Just Launched A Fee-Free Money Transfer Service

It seems we may well be heading towards a world where, when sending money internationally, the only thing we need to concern ourselves with is the exchange rate – because transaction fees are rapidly being consigned to history.

Starting from today, Circle, a money transfer service and app that allows its users to ping money to one another using a mobile messaging service, is introducing fee-free person-to-person (P2P) money transfer services for users in the UK, Spain, and the US. Read more

The 5 Best New Services For Sending Money Abroad

Over the past few years, thanks to the rise of a number of disruptive Financial Technology, otherwise known as FinTech businesses, it has become far easier, and cheaper to send money overseas.

Until recently most of us would have used either a wire transfer agency, such as Western Union or Ria Money Transfer, or a high street bank to send money internationally, but there were 3 major drawbacks to this approach. Read more

This year’s Fintech50 Announced – UK Startups Dominate Disruptive List

The fifth edition of FinTechCity’s Fintech50 was announced today. The list is compiled by selected industry experts and celebrates innovation across a wide range of disruptive financial services companies.

The first list was published back in 2012, when fintech was a nascent industry that was just beginning to find its feet. Today, the Fintech50 contains a multitude of companies that are fast becoming household names. Read more

Bahrain Latest Country To Introduce A “Regulatory Sandbox” To Test Emerging Fintech

If you have been wondering what the latest big trend in Fintech is, wonder no more. It’s the “Regulatory Sandbox”.

What is a regulatory sandbox? Essentially, it’s a strategy being adopted by different governments and regulatory authorities in order to encourage young Fintech startups to experiment with new products, services, and systems, without having to worry about breaking the law. Read more

Zopa Receives £32 Million From New Backers To Build “Next Generation” Bank

Zopa first launched in 2005 as a peer-to-peer lending site. Since then, it has lent over £1.8 billion and helped its lenders earn more than £75m of interest.

The company says it has “built a profitable, scalable and viable business”, but now, subject to regulatory approval, it wants to “launch a next generation bank to complement our existing peer-to-peer products.” Read more

SWIFT Fights Trend Towards Fintech Alternatives With Launch Of GPI Cross-Border Payments Tracker

Whilst the world’s media obsess about Fintech and Blockchain technology, it’s easy to forget that SWIFT, The Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication to call it by its full name, still rules the financial messaging roost.

In fact, SWIFT has been the top dog for nearly 40 years – since it was first founded, in 1973 with the support of 239 banks in 15 different countries.

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What are APIs And How Do Fintech Firms Use Them?

API stands for Application Programming Interface. In the banking world, APIs can be used by “third party” developers to access data stored by banks.

A good example would be where a third party developer, say a credit reference agency, could use APIs to access somebody’s credit history, allowing them to make a more informed judgment about whether the applicant constituted a credit risk.

But there are plenty of other ways that an API can be used. For example, an app developer could use an API to offer customers a real-time view of the money they are spending using a bank card, by requesting access to a users’ bank account and downloading the information.

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Hidden Fees & Unfair Exchange Rates; Why Do Bank’s Charge So Much For Sending Your Money Abroad?

Banks and wire transfer services charge too much in fees and offer the least favourable exchange rates

If you are a follower of the financial news media, you are probably aware that how people are sending money abroad is changing.

The most common ways to send money abroad at the turn of the decade would have been to either use a money transfer agency like Western Union or Ria, or to visit your high-street bank.

But what many people don’t realise is that because of the monopoly that the banks, and these two transfer agencies had on the market, they were able to charge unnecessarily high fees, as well as offering you a price that did not accurately reflect the current value of a currency.

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