Intelligence

Brexit Burnout

Brexit Burnout: Leaders of Britain’s four biggest political parties faced uncomfortable questions from a studio audience selected to reflect the level of the parties’ support, reports the Associated Press. In addition to covering Brexit, participants grilled politicians on the U.K.’s stuttering economy and frayed social fabric. Meanwhile, Christian Science Monitor reports on Brexit’s role in shifting the tone of U.K. politics from civil to, well, not. 

The Schwab-vious Story: The holidays kick off engagement season. Among those getting hitched: Schwab and TD Ameritrade. The companies confirmed Monday that Schwab is buying TD in an all-stock transaction that values TD at a cool $26 billion. Together, the firms will hold more than $5 trillion in client assets and 24 million brokerage accounts.

Schwab’s CEO tells NPR the merger is good news for investors. But the Wall Street Journal notes that advisors aren’t necessarily thrilled by the news. Small RIAs, in particular, may suffer due to decreased competition or attention, according to CNBC. Beware of DOJ scrutiny, says Investment News.

Sweet on User Data: While we’re chatting engagements, PayPal acquired Honey for $4 billion (20x revenue), confusing some. Wired and Fortune reported on why the payments platform may see value in a browser extension: access to users… and their data. In case you missed it, The Economist reported on the value of user data, particularly as Big Tech expands into finance. See: Amazon launched a credit card in June, Apple in August, Facebook announced a new payments system this month, and Google plans to offer checking accounts in the US in 2020. 

Boomer, Bye: Over the next two decades, Baby Boombers will try to sell 21 million homes – but who will buy them? The Wall Street Journal covers the trend – and how it might interact with others, including: the financial fragility of gens X and Y, the vulnerability of small towns, and the redesigning of retirement living.

On the Vested Blog: “Finance—and the world economy itself—is in desperate need of financial storytellers. With more than a 25% decline in students majoring in English since the ‘08 crash, we’re facing the prospect of a shortage…A scarcity of skilled writers who can decode the inner workings of market movements and translate it all to the masses.” Read Kerry Mullen’s post on why economists need English majors.