Big Apple or the Boondocks, technology democratizes the world of personal finance

Big Apple or the Boondocks, technology democratizes the world
of personal finance The best gift technology has given to the mankind is the speed and ease of communications.

Rapid developments and growth of communication technology especially the Internet and smart phones have made it feasible for easy and convenient long distance banking and financial transactions all over the world.

Gone are the days of physically going to your banker or investment broker. Everything is available through the Internet and for today’s world on the move, the smartphone is the answer. Connect to everything and anywhere through your smartphone. Whether you are a hot shot investor or a small time personal investor, in the city or out in the boondocks you are on top of your finances.

Statistics show that within a short period of 4 years from 2011 to 2014, the number of adults with bank accounts increased to 62% (700 million), a growth of 11%. In developed economies 94% of adults had bank account as compared to the figures of emerging and developing economies which stood at 54%.

India during this period in line with its aim for financial inclusion for all its citizens was successful in opening 125 million new bank accounts, a rapid rise from 35% to 53%.


You do not need a bank account but through your mobile phone several requirements like paying of bills, receiving and sending cash, taking loans, insurance, starting business, etc are being met through mobile money account services.

Personal finance has seen a lot of changes from the traditional physical banks, investment houses and brokers, to internet banking and now to meet the mobile millennial generation, smart phone financial management is the natural development. The millennials are the target customers and they are more comfortable in the virtual world. There are various personal finance apps which have made the lives of millenials much easier.

In the context of personal investments, there are thousands of websites providing financial information and investment analysis. Company reports can be accessed from (SEC) the Securities and Exchange Commission website.

Financial service providers have also in turn made tremendous changes to meet the rapidly growing and changing requirements of customers. Companies ensure their financial reports are easily available online to attract investors.

Right across the spectrum almost everyone has a mobile phone and surprisingly it is the not so literate who seem equally up to date and tech savvy in using this amazing tool. In addition the numerous mobile apps coming in have made it easier for the customers to manage their finances.

Today’s user is more aware of his needs, he is self determined and makes his own choices; he is not going to leave it to the banker or investment advisor. The customer today wants fast and flexible services.

The investor base has expanded rapidly and financial institutions, businesses are eager to tap into this growing market. Services and products are being customized to suit individual or group usage. Competition too has reduced costs while offering a wide variety of choices.

Mobile Financial Services
MFS or Mobile financial services are the logical development to provide financial services which the banking sector cannot reach or provide. This is especially applicable to developing economies, where MFS has registered a 60% presence. Today there are 255 MFS spread over 89 countries with almost 300 million registered users.

Growing Micro finance through its need to reach its far flung customers has played an important role in the development of MFS. Micro finance has grown from US $ 13.6 billion in 2004 to US $ 65 billion by 2013.

Recognizing that MFS is a major factor for financial inclusion and economic and social development in developing economies, several countries like India, Kenya and Liberia have passed regulatory frameworks and reforms to facilitate and improve MFS.

Technology has given ready accessibility to the layman to financial and investment information as well as freedom of choice besides bringing down the cost.

However the major benefit is that billions of individuals who were out of the banking services reach are now able to avail not only banking but also alternate, cheaper and quicker financial services ranging from government subsidies without the middleman, to sending and receiving cash, insurance, raising loans, information on agriculture and economy et al.

It is a revolution indeed.

(Image Credits: Indiatimes)