Bigger Isn’t Always Better: Commerzbank and Deutsche Bank are in formal talks for a merger–an idea that judging by Germany’s economy, would seem lucrative. However, despite their economic standing, the country’s banks are far from thriving, according to The Economist. The bank market is overcrowded with more than 1500 banks in Germany alone. This, combined with “subterranean official interest rates—they must pay the European Central Bank 0.4 [percent] a year to deposit cash—that show no sign of rising” isn’t doing them any favors.
In short, the merger provides little benefit to either bank but the government is reportedly keeping its fingers crossed for the deal to proceed. It owns 15 percent of Commerzbank after bailing out Dresdner Bank, which Commerzbank acquired in 2009.
Lyft’s IPO Roadshow: The ride-sharing and hailing app Lyft officially kicked off its initial public offering roadshow for investors, touting its plans to raise more than $2 billion during the IPO at a valuation of $23 billion. According to Reuters, The tech company managed to beat its major competitor Uber to the finish line. The other ride-sharing app plans to go public this April and hopes for a valuation around $120 billion, although analysts’ projections peg it closer to $100 billion.
Five-Star Financial Services: Ally Bank recently launched a campaign encouraging consumers to consult financial product reviews the way they would when looking for a new restaurant or finding a handyman. TearSheet’s Zach Miller breaks down the bank’s study, which found that for services like the ones above, user reviews are highly consulted. But when it comes to financial products, reviews are rarely consulted. Just 23 percent of participant said they consulted reviews when choosing a bank or a financial service provider in the last year.
Investing in Payment Tech: Fidelity National Information Systems and WorldPay are changing the payments game. The Wall Street Journal said FIS acquired the payment processing company for a cool $35 billion, making it one of the largest deals in the space to-date. The deal is significant not just in size, but also in influence, allowing FIS to reach more customers as more transactions take place online.
Nashville is Home to Hot Chicken and Hot Job Market: Nashville had the No. 1 job market for all metropolitan areas in the United States as of January, according to The Wall Street Journal. The city reported just a 2.7 percent unemployment rate and year-over-year job-growth rate of 3.9 percent earlier this year.