Banks say IT key to mortgage market (Update)

Thought: what banks do re: mortgages will probably model how they approach healthcare

Research carried out for Capgemini, Unicredit and Efma for the 2009 World Retail banking report shows that banks see IT optimisation as the third most important (45%) opportunity in addressing the mortgage market over the next five years, with 36% saying that using remote channels is.

Thought #2: What banks are doing is trying to figure out what they’ve done

Dr. Johannes C. Scholtes, President and CEO, ZyLAB North America LLC wrote recently (Investigate or Investigated? The Credit Crisis is Turbo-Charging Enterprise Search):

At this moment, only two specialized applications in the enterprise search market exist that show growth potential: those that are used to investigateĀ  the fall-out of the credit crisis and those used by organizations as part of their defense against investigations that result from heir activities in the banking and financial industry. Although most of the economy is reeling and IT budgets are being slashed, enterprise search applications are one of the few areas where organizations are allocating investment resources.

Thought #3: A more pertinent question for banks may be what will they be doing in the future

This makes Alan Reiter’s observations (Revolutionizing Money: Virtual Currency Gets Real) especially sobering:

We are witnessing a revolutionary financial trend: Virtual money. “Fake” online currency of gold, points, etc. — is becoming real. Differences between real and virtual currency are diminishing. Currency “exchanges” have been established. Multiplayer virtual worlds will soon host government-licensed banks.

And the sins of real money, such as bank robberies and currency laundering, are infecting virtual money as well. Government taxing agencies, including the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, are exploring laws for virtual income. At least one government is concerned that virtual money could actually devalue “legitimate” money. I predict we will eventually consider some online currency at least as useful as traditional currency.

See also BusinessWeek’s take at Virtual Currencies Gain in Popularity.

Thought #4 this will add a “virtual” blue ocean opportunity for peer to peer micro loan industry

Collateralized debt obligations (yes, of subprime fame) on virtual cash revenue streams are a possibility