Dec 15

Wonders & Blunders: Deck the Halls with Boughs of Bitcoin

 
 OUR CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE WEEK’S NEWS
Bitcoin continues to break records and make headlines across the financial industry. This week marked its crossover into mainstream investment: you can now trade bitcoin futures on Wall Street. What will next week bring for bitcoin’s skyrocketing popularity? Let’s hope it doesn’t FALL-la-la-la-la.
 
Are banks open to open banking? Many banks want to improve the customer experience, but struggle to balance brand strength, trust, innovation and the change from a product-centric to a platform-centric business.
 
Check out our final article today to stay informed on the latest legislation that may affect your business – the Senate soon will debate the Save Local Business Act and what it means to be a joint employer.
 
Only 12 days to Christmas…not that we’re counting!
 
Bitcoin Futures Make Wall Street Debut
Happy Bitcoin Futures Week!
 
Bloomberg covers the first day of futures trading for bitcoin at Cboe, describing temporary outages on Cboe’s website due to unexpected demand and more. Aptly summing up the phenomenon, an article source states, “It is rare that you see something more volatile than bitcoin, but we found it: bitcoin futures.”
 
Cboe’s launch of bitcoin futures trading is heralded as a “watershed” moment for bitcoin. CME and Nasdaq also will launch bitcoin futures soon, though it may be some time before cryptocurrency becomes an integral part of investor portfolios, according to Bloomberg.
What do you think will happen with the popularity and profitability of bitcoin futures trading as it matures?
 
API FYI: Banks Open to Open Banking, but Not Ready Yet
 
Banks are at impasse – they must embrace new tech or risk becoming irrelevant. The latest move we’re seeing is the transition to “open banking,” increasing speed, lowering costs and offering customers more choices. However, many banks are still hesitant to embrace this emerging trend. 
 
Open banking allows banks and companies to interact and share data through use of secure open APIs. Now third-party developers can create and offer new and helpful tools to bank customers. This allows customers to take a customized approach to fully managing their financial lives by picking and choosing any channel/app they want to use, all via their bank’s platform.  
 
Emoji Index
Will the Senate Save Local Businesses?
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) is “trying to put the Browning-Ferris decision back into the bottle,” according to Human Resources Executive Online. In 2015, the NLRB made one of the most controversial moves we’ve ever seen when ruling in the Browning v. Ferris case when it significantly broadened the definition of join-employment status. 
 
Following the ruling, corporations with franchisees and companies working with subcontractors were responsible for ensuring employees of those companies were paid fairly and provided with proper working conditions. If there were any issues, the company, despite not having direct control over employees, could be held liable in court and brought to the negotiating table with unions. 
 
Bill 3441, otherwise known as the Save Local Business Act, will clarify and tighten the definition of a joint employer. It passed in the U.S. House of Representatives in November and will proceed to the Senate.
 
» IN THE NEWS
NPR Marketplace interviews Charles Thorngren, CEO of Noble Gold, about why people are abandoning 401(k)s.
Watch Pavia Systems technology solutions for construction job shortages and training on KIRO7 News.
» BOTTOM LINE: SEO and Today’s Forward-Thinking PR Pro
It seemed like it wasn’t long ago that when you mentioned “search engine optimization” to a communications professional, their eyes would glaze over or they would immediately pick up their cell phone to call the nearest “IT guy”.
 
Those days are over – or at least they soon will be.
 
SEO can no longer be considered the sole province of a company’s IT or digital marketing department. It needs to be a mainstay, front-and-center consideration for PR professionals as well. There is tremendous value to a company’s communications and SEO contingents working side-by-side. In fact, a properly executed PR plan can be the most effective arrow in SEO’s quiver.
»FEATURED CASE STUDY:
ATRIA WEALTH SOLUTIONS
Atria Wealth Solutions (Atria) not only launched as an active holding company, but also announced a significant private equity investment from Lee Equity Partners while simultaneously acquiring two broker-dealers. The client required a PR team with expertise in overseeing complex situations with multiple stakeholder groups and product lines (i.e., the business channels – bank and credit union affiliated advisors, hybrid registered investment advisors and other key stakeholders).
 
 
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