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RETAIL BANKING | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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Weekly Global News Wrap Up: Mobile apps threaten European lenders; Danish banks dragged down along with Danske

And JP Morgan defies the branch-lite push as it sets out to open 50 more branches.

From CNBC: So-called fintech companies have sought to take on the world's biggest banks for years, but only recently have companies like Monzo begun to build a critical mass. Millions of customers across Europe, most in their 20s or 30s, have signed up over the past two years. And thanks to favorable regulations in the region and an influx of venture capital, that shift is accelerating.

Here in Britain, officials have been concerned about the power of large banks in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, and they see the start-ups as weakening the hold of traditional lenders. The authorities have adopted policies such as a "regulatory sandbox," allowing what are known as challenger banks to test new financial products and get feedback from regulators before proposing them to customers.

From Bloomberg: The money laundering scandal at Danske Bank A/S is having stock market repercussions that go beyond Denmark’s biggest lender. The country’s other banks, which weren’t involved in Danske’s dubious activities in Estonia, have underperformed their European peers in recent months, a development that can in part be blamed on their local rival.

From CNBC:  J.P. Morgan is opening 50 new branches in Philadelphia, Delaware and southern New Jersey over the next five years, the bank said Monday in a release. It's part of a plan disclosed in January to open 400 branches across the U.S., an aggressive move to use its corporate tax cut windfall to strengthen its retail reach.

Whilst J.P. Morgan is the biggest U.S. bank by branches and deposits, there are still regions the company considers growth opportunities. Wells Fargo, PNC and Citizens are the top three lenders in Pennsylvania by branch count.

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