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HSBC, Royal Bank of Scotland Plan to Enhance Digital Banking

Zacks Equity Research

HSBC Holdings plc HSBC and The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc RBS are progressing toward the launch of their digital banking platforms to meet customer demand, as the preference for digitalization and online banking is increasing rapidly. The news was reported by Reuters.

HSBC’s new digital banking platform, HSBC Kinetic, has been developed for small businesses. It is still in the beta testing phase and its launch is expected to take place in the first half of 2020.

Royal Bank of Scotland’s standalone digital consumer banking platform is called Bo and it is expected to launch later this month.

Bo is likely to have features such as user budgeting, and saving and spend analysis, which will target users with less than $128 in savings. However, HSBC Kinetic aims to connect small businesses with mobile-based banking solutions, including a current account, overdraft, and spending and cash flow management analytics.

Notably, HSBC Kinetic, which was developed by nearly 150 staff in London, was previously known internally as Project Iceberg.

HSBC’s head of U.K. small business banking, Peter McIntyre, said that the company is hoping that hundreds of thousands of customers will sign up for HSBC Kinetic. Moreover, the bank plans to roll the Kinetic tool to other countries it operates in.

Moreover, despite the ongoing economic uncertainty in the U.K., McIntyre remains confident regarding the launch of Kinetic. He stated, “I think this is the best time to do it, to bring more financial insight to customers at a difficult time.”

In fact, amid geopolitical tensions like the US-China trade war and the uncertainty related to the impact of Brexit, HSBC along with some other companies like Deutsche Bank DB, Nomura Holdings, Inc NMR and a few more are engaged in rigorous cost cutting to improve operating efficiency.

While shares of HSBC have lost 8.3% so far this year, that of Royal Bank of Scotland has gained 2.7%. The industry has registered growth of 5.3% over the same time frame.

Currently, Royal Bank of Scotland carries a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) while HSBC carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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