Chris Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog the Finanser (  Here he regularly discusses key issues and opportunities in banking and financial services, summarising research, white papers and other analysis that is topical for the day.  He is also the author of eight books covering everything from European regulations in banking through the credit crisis to the future of banking.

When he’s not travelling and delivering keynote speeches, Chris chairs the European networking forum the Financial Services Club, which he founded in 2004.  The Financial Services Club is a network for financial professionals, and focuses on the future of financial services through the delivery of research, analysis, commentary and debate and has regular meetings in London, Edinburgh, Dublin and Vienna.

He is also Chief Executive of Balatro Ltd, a research company, and a co-founder of the website Shaping Tomorrow.

Chris regularly in various media including the BBC, Bloomberg and Sky News, and is a Judge on many awards programs including the Card Awards and the Asian Banker’s Retail Excellence Awards, as well as having worked = closely with leading banks such as HSBC, the Royal Bank of Scotland, Citibank and Société Générale, as well as the World Economic Forum.


Branchless Banking and a Cashless Society: fact or fiction?

For years, banks and industry pundits have bet that cash and bank branches will disappear, yet they are still as strong as ever.  Sure, cash and branches are reducing in number, but cash in circulation is still increasing as are the number of bank branches in some countries.  So is a branchless, cashless future a reality or a myth?

Why banking will disappear but banks will not … well, not all of them

Over the next decade, a radical shift will take place in the role and function of banking.  It’s already started and it’s all about BIG DATA.  But it’s more than that.  It’s to do with the value shift in society from seeing money to seeing virtual money; from seeing technology to seeing social technology; and from seeing government to seeing self-governance.  These shifts have been seeded in smartphones, social networks and the global linkage of every person on the planet to wireless media, and this shift will accelerate over the next decade.  What this means for banks is that they will become hybrid keepers of money and data, and anything else their customers believe to be of value.  They might even be keepers of cloud secure Facebook photo albums … why not?  To see the impact of the key political, economic, social and technological forces of the next decade, Chris Skinner will bring together these themes and outline the vision for the bank of 2021.

Are Bankers Good or Bad for Society?

In previous ages bankers have sometimes pecked lower in the order of society than lepers. Jesus declared their usurous ways immoral. Amazingly, from this disadvantaged position in society, bankers flourished over the past two centuries before imploding spectacularly both financially and socially in 2008. Bankers now don’t even trust each other.
This illuminating review of the history and future of banking and society explores why these former outcasts from high society are natural problem children and ponders whether they have a social future and, if so, what will it look like?

Money is meaningless

Since PayPal began, we have seen money being digitised. Now mobile is booming, the whole mechanism of money and customer interaction is being revolutionised.  Add to this Facebook credits and other virtual currencies, and you soon realise it’s not about money but it’s about value.  Value management in all its forms – money, knowledge, ideas, time, goods, services, trade – is the critical focus for tomorrow’s institutions.  And, as value becomes exchanged in all forms of virtual and physical form, money becomes meaningless.  What does it mean for you?

The similarities between banks and landmines

Banks are like landmines that explode in economic terms, in a similar way in which landmines explode and blow away people in the real world.  Just as landmines blow the legs away from humans, banks blow the legs off economies.

It’s obviously the case that this is true today, what with the Lehmans collapse with Credit Default Swaps creating the first financial crisis; and now sovereign debt in the Eurozone is developing the second.  How can such economic landmines exist in a world where we should have cleared them by now, and how can we avoid them in the future?



“Chris is a great speaker. Known for his humour, sharp wit, and deep knowledge of global banking. Chris always entertains and educates at the same time.”

Brett King, Author Bank 2.0 and Chairman, Movenbank

“The Bloomberg TV team is very grateful to have had such an insightful guest in such critical times.”

Marta Marino, Bloomberg Television

“You are a versatile commentator who could easily transfer into another finance/economy debate… a topic which comes around time and again – and we don’t want to risk throwing away a valuable voice like yours.”

Cara O’Doherty, BBC 

“Chris Skinner is switched on, insightful, concise and keeps his finger firmly on the financial sector pulse.  An opinion leader, not a follower.”

Robert Hokin, Chief Executive, ecoConnect CIC

“For those who are unaware of Chris’ tireless work in the Financial Sector then I am glad to be able to thoroughly endorse him as a person who has both the intellectual acumen as well as the drive and dedication to his industry which is so sadly rare in the business world today.” 

Steve Edwards MBE, Head of Fraud for eBay Europe 

 “The audience couldn’t stop raving about your presentation. You know you could be live at the O2 and get a full house!” 

Bikash Mathur, Partner and Head of Europe, Polaris Software Labs

“I’ve known Chris for a long time now, well over 10 years, and I always look forward to hearing what he says. He speaks knowledgably about a wide range of topics, from social media to payments to MiFID, and is rightly an in demand speaker and chairman at conferences. He has a knack for generating pasionate debate and discussion. As a result, he’s also extremely well connected in the banking sector, and few people in the industry don’t know Chris. I’ve worked with Chris in all sorts of ways and if nothing else his sense of humour makes him a pleasure to work with!” 

Gareth Lodge, Senior Analyst, Celent

“Chris is a breath of fresh air. He continues to push the status quo thinking and adds value in looking at financial services through different and new perspectives.” 

Kevin Harris, Executive Director, SaskTel

“Over the many years we have worked with Chris Skinner, we have found him to have both a multi-dimensional understanding of the financial services business, as well as unique insights into what the future holds for our industry. Most of all, he is uniquely skilled in articulately painting a clear picture of the dynamics impacting our future to help other financial services executives see what’s ahead for them.” 

Deborah L. Bianucci, President & Chief Executive Officer, BAI

“Chris is actually a sage. Not only is he a wise, perceptive and funny, he is also excellent at identifying and explaining the key drivers of change in the Financial Services industry. His work and that of the forward looking Financial Services Club around the impact of Information Technology, Web 2.0 and client expectations of what Financial Services should be delivering to its clients, is superb. Chris is erudite and witty as a Chairman and informative and challenging as a speaker. You can see why he is in demand around the world.” 

Mark Outhwaite, Anti-Money Laundering Consultant & Compliance Adviser, OHL Consulting LLP

“Chris has always impressed me with his forward-looking perspectives on the global catalysts for change in the highly-commoditized retail banking industry. Chris can always be counted on to provide a controversial, yet highly-relevant dialogue on potential sources of future disruption.”

Steven D. Audino, Executive Director, USAA

“Chris is perhaps the first writer I know who successfully captures the pulse of the financial services industry not from a European or American, but from a truly global perspective. I sensed the same energy, reading it in Singapore and Beijing.”

Emmanuel Daniel, Founder and Editor-in-Chief, the Asian Banker

“Chris takes a serious subject and makes you laugh, think and worry at the same time. A provocative book about an industry being transformed in the age of the Internet.”

Leonard H. Schrank, former Chief Executive Officer, SWIFT

“Chris needs no recommendation, but here is a full-hearted one anyway! I have worked with Chris on marketing activities since 1992 and have always found him to be informed, incisive and often contentious in his analysis of the issues facing organisations today across the financial services and other sectors.”

Kerry Chapman, Marketing Manager, Tata Consultancy Services

“Chris has that rare ability to truly understand the social and business context as well as the potential technology solutions. In the finance sector this is absolutely essential, but sadly lacking in so many of Chris’s peer group.”

Ian McDonald Wood, Trustee, the Strategic Planning Society

“Chris is a familiar face and voice in the UK and European banking market and being a prolific blogger on the banking and finance markets needs little introduction. His views are always of interest and are often stated to provoke broader debate. He is an excellent, intelliegent speaker and has been used by my company as a facilitator to good and useful effect.” 

Roy McPherson, Banking Consultant, Gresham Computing

“Chris spoke at a recent Cambridge100 Club Dinner about the next big developments in technology and what these will mean to business. This was a remarkable talk – insightful, compelling and informative. Chris is a visionary and futurologist with a real command of the factors which shape our future.” 

Dermot Hill, Chairman, Cambridge 100 Club

“Chris is a visionary, committed and highly knowledgeable about tomorrow’s trends. I’d thoroughly recommend him as a great speaker on the future particularly in what’s coming over the horizon in Financial Services and Technology.”

Michael Jackson, former Chief Executive, Birmingham Midshires Building Society

“Chris did a fantastic visionary presentation for me in our ‘Compliance as a Competitive Weapon’ seminar. He thinks outside the box and consistently delivers thought provoking arguments.” 

Tony Ferguson, Director, UniRisX

“Thanks ever so much for your excellent kick-off of this year’s Management Conference. The feedback for the attendees was uniformly very positive. Your remarks exceeded our goal of ‘telling them something they didn’t know’. Come back and see us again!” 

John P. Biestman, Director, Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle

Thanks again for Chris Skinner’s “keynote address at our conference. I’m just reviewing the evaluations and he was certainly a hit. Comments included: ‘Chris Skinner – WOW’; ‘Chris Skinner – you saved the best to the last’; ‘Chris was an excellent speaker and very thought provoking’; ‘Chris’ presentation was exceptional’.”

Anne Marie MacNeil, Deposit Specialist, SaskCentral



  • Money for Nothing and your Cheques for Free – How banks process payments from small transactions on your mobile telephone to international transfers of billions of dollars
  • Socialising the Antisocial Bank – Converting the antisocial bank by digitally connecting with customers to become part of their community
  • It’s banking Jim, but not as we know it – Creating tomorrow’s bank by identifying the most critical strategic trends in banking today
  • Not every bank is Goldman Sachs – Tracking the rise of algorithmic machines and high frequency trading through a deregulated investment worldThe Extraordinary Madness of Banks – Understanding the credit crisis, and the bankers, regulators and politicians involved
  • The future of banking in a globalised world
  • The future of finance after SEPA
  • The future of investing in Europe’s market after MiFID


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