Tuesday, March 10th, 2015
• Mar 09, 2015 – 6:20 am
New 2014 State of the Industry Report on #Mobile Financial Services: #Remittances on the move! #IMTC LinkedIn Group ow.ly/K55r7
• Mar 09, 2015 – 6:31am
FinCEN Fines Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort $10M for Significant and Long Standing Anti-Money Laundering Violations ow.ly/K54t1
• Mar 09, 10:05 am
What about the US Postal Service Branches becoming Money Transfer Agents and offering Bill Payment, Check Cashing? ow.ly/K4Rxm
• Mar 06, 8:16 pm
Homework this weekend: Take the Know #Africa? Quiz. Is fun! Beat me if you can: +17; -4 ; Score 81% – Avg Score 76% ow.ly/K2s5b
THE SOMALIAN REMITTANCE CRISIS
At IMTC USA 2015 one of the sessions will be dedicated to the analyzing the critical time remittances to Somalia are experiencing and how Somalis are handling it
The Somalian history is an array of misfortunes where the history of the world plays itself; from the European countries’ drive to colonize Africa in the 1880’s to the effects of World War II, the Cold War, the clan wars and now the Al-Shabab insurgents. The full article is here.
With a history of conflict Somalis have left the country to seek a better future. There are significant Somali communities in the UK and the US (150,000 in each country). There are also present in the Netherlands (50,000), the Scandinavian countries, Saudi Arabia and the UAE, as well as South Africa and Australia.
Each year, Somali migrants send approx. $1.3 billion to Somalia; of that, approx. $215 million comes from the US (16%). Remittances sustain the survival of 1 out of 4 of the 10 million Somalis living in the country. Close to 20 MTOs send money between the US and Somalia; 3 of them, Dahabshiil, Amal Express, and Qaran Express have presence in several markets and in 2009, provided 60% of the remittances to the country. Only 25% it is believed to be done through informal channels nowadays.
But bank account closures in several countries are threatening the flow of formal remittances in this critical time where the country is rising from the ashes and the US names its first ambassador in 25 years. We are exploring this issue in our blog this week and next week preparing for the sessions at our coming IMTC USA 2015 and IMTC EMEA 2015 Conferences. Check the Agenda for both events.
Money Transfer Business Is on the Rise — Time to Get Out… Or time to get in!
Bank account closures are a big problem now, specially for small MTOs although larger MTOs feel comfortable now, except that the price of banking for them is going through the roof. But Banks exiting the remittance business, Banks closing the provision of remittance services, is also on the news. Last year Banks reported for the first time, as required by the Dodd-Frank Act, the volume of international remittances that they provide for customers and intermediary firms.
Bank of America provided about 452,000 international remittances in 4Q2014, worth $4.6 billion, up 22% from 2Q, while Wilshire Bancorp in LA, a Korean-American institution, provided about 24,000 remittances in 4Q2014 worth about $814 million, up 21% from 2Q. JP Morgan Chase $6.2B and Wells Fargo 3.8B. In this article, Peters states: “The market will likely expand again this year. But a combination of factors — intense regulatory scrutiny of anti-money-laundering rules, disruptive technology — may force many institutions in the long run to voluntarily give up on the business, or scale back dramatically, several banking attorneys, consultants and industry executives said.” Read my response article and share your views…