Young North Americans ready to bank with untraditonal financial institutions – Accenture

Four in ten young North American adults would consider switching to a branchless digital bank, and 70% would bank with companies not usually associated with financial services, according to Accenture’s latest survey.

Four in ten young North American adults would consider switching to a branchless digital bank, and 70% would bank with companies not usually associated with financial services, according to Accenture’s latest survey.

The Dublin-based consultancy asked 4,000 US and Canadian banking customers: "If these companies offered banking services, how likely would you be to bank with them?"

Despite the fact that 40% of the US customers surveyed and 64% of the Canadians had been with their current bank for the past decade or more, the results showed that, amongst the 18-34 year olds, about three quarters would abandon traditional banking for technology and retail companies.

Digital payment networks Square and PayPal came at the first and second places, with respectively 50% and 41% of the answers.

T-Mobile, the phone company, scored 32%. Apple and Google both got 29%, while the retailers Costco and Walmart got 29% and 23% of the votes.

Jamie Dimon, chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, the largest US bank by assets, commented: "You’d be an idiot not to think that the ‘Googles’ and ‘Apples’…they all want to eat our lunch. I mean every single one of them. And they’re going to try."

Walmart and Google are already present in the banking sector. Google Wallet allows customers to pay with their mobile phone, and Walmart has partnered with American Express to offer a pre-paid debit card called ‘Bluebird’.

The American retail giant and the payments processor company signed a partnership in October 2012 and rolled out the card, which allows users to make direct deposits, pay bills online or withdraw cash from ATMs.

US bank branches have been in decline since 2009 because of the growing acceptance of online and mobile banking. However, Wells Fargo recently announced that 85% of its products were still sold in branches.

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