A week of major mergers

E*Trade deal as an indicator: Morgan Stanley’s acquisition of E*Trade for $13 billion is big news in its own right, but according to The Wall Street Journal, it also signals a massive change in the broker industry’s business model. In a shift from the “financial supermarket” — where customers could open bank accounts, buy stocks and bonds, insurance and more — this new model is based solely on what offerings keep fees in-house, writes Jason Zweig.

Intuit to buy Credit Karma: Just days after Morgan Stanley’s announced its acquisition of E*TRADE, Intuit–home to TurboTax and Mint–is expected to buy Credit Karma for $7 billion in cash and stock, according to The New York Times. Credit Karma is one of the largest fintechs in the world and its customers include a third of all Americans who have a credit profile.

More from The Times: “Signing up for the site became a rite of passage for Americans looking to get their credit score in shape to apply for a mortgage. In addition to providing credit scores from TransUnion and Equifax, Credit Karma offers advice on how the scores could be improved by doing things like lowering credit card balances.”

Chief cashier advocates for crypto: The Bank of England’s chief cashier Sarah John is pushing for an official digital currency, writes City AM, despite hesitation from regulators’ and politicians’ concerns. Just last month, the BoE met with many of its peers to asses the possibility of launching its own cryptocurrency, a move many speculated was to prevent the possible influence of Facebook’s Libra. 

Regulators and the Fintech-Banker wedding: The establishment’s reluctant acceptance of “the rebel” is par for the course in this country, and the financial industry is no exception. Banks resignation of the inevitable success and necessity of fintech is best exemplified by A recent move by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) underscores this very dynamic. See what it means for the future of finance in our latest blog post from our Chief Economist Milton Ezrati.

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