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FPC releases operational considerations for instant payments guideline - Industry roundup: 16 October

Faster Payments Council releases first operational considerations for instant payments guideline

The US Faster Payments Council (FPC) has published Guideline.01: Operational Considerations for Instant Payments Receive-Side Primer in its Faster Payments Knowledge Center. The FPC Operational Considerations for Instant & Immediate Payments Work Group (OCWG), sponsored by Form3, developed this first guideline as a resource for financial institutions supporting instant payment rails.

The FPC Operational Considerations for Instant Payments Guideline.01 serves as a primer on operational considerations for receiving instant payments, offering high-level insights on priorities to consider when adopting this new method of receipt. The primer is meant to provide a springboard for financial institutions to plan the journey to faster payments adoption by providing high-level insights of the various areas for consideration.

As the first guideline in the series, the primer begins with an introduction to instant payments operations. It sets the stage for how instant payments are transforming the US payments ecosystem and challenging long-held payment processing paradigms. Topics covered in the primer include new message flows/processes concerning existing payment flows, liquidity management, fraud mitigation, exception processing, staffing needs and training requirements, and more.

“While the conversations around faster payments have been going on for a while, with the recent launch of the FedNow Service to complement the TCH RTP private sector solution – it’s clear that the tactical ‘how’ do we do this, is becoming more and more of the conversation,” said Miriam Sheril, Head of Product – US at Form3 and FPC Operational Considerations Work Group Chair. “That’s why the OCWG was formed – to start pulling together information on how to actually think about operating a faster payment service specifically focused on those two new rails.”


FSB publishes annual progress report on climate-related disclosures

The Financial Stability Board (FSB) has published its annual progress report on climate-related disclosures. The FSB welcomes the publication of the ISSB Standards, which will serve as a global framework for sustainability disclosures and, when implemented, will enable disclosures by different companies worldwide to be made on a common basis. The FSB will work with the ISSB, International Organization of Securities Commissions (IOSCO) and other relevant bodies to promote the timely and wide use of the standards. Interoperability of the ISSB standards with jurisdictional disclosure frameworks is necessary to achieve global comparability of climate-related disclosures.

Meanwhile, the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) and the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) have developed a global set of assurance, ethics, and independence standards. The main objectives of a global assurance framework are to enhance the quality and reliability of sustainability-related information through third-party assurance. Compliance with and enforcement of high-quality sustainability assurance requirements could serve to deter “greenwashing”.

The report also outlines progress made by jurisdictions in promoting climate-related disclosures. It notes that all FSB jurisdictions either have requirements, guidance, or expectations regarding climate-related disclosures currently in place or have taken steps (for instance, made proposals) to do so.

In keeping with previous years, this year’s progress report highlights the findings of the 2023 TCFD [Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures] Status Report. The TCFD Status Report reveals that the percentage of public companies disclosing TCFD-aligned information continues to grow, but more progress is needed. With the ISSB’s inaugural Standards having been released, the TCFD’s work is now complete, and the FSB has requested the ISSB to assume responsibility for monitoring progress on the state of climate-related financial disclosures by companies as of next year, which will help to support the adoption of IFRS S1 and IFRS S2.


Research project demonstrates interoperable CBDC for Web3 commerce in Australia 

Mastercard has announced that it has successfully demonstrated the capabilities of a new solution that enables CBDCs to be tokenised (or “wrapped”) onto different blockchains, providing consumers with a new option to participate in commerce across multiple blockchains with increased security and ease.

The solution, developed in partnership with Cuscal and Mintable as part of an RBA and DFCRC research project to explore potential use cases for a CBDC in Australia, includes controls ensuring that the pilot CBDC can be held, used, and redeemed only by authorised parties that have been Know Your Customer (KYC) verified and risk assessed by licensed service providers.

Mastercard demonstrated in a live environment how the solution could enable the holder of a pilot CBDC to purchase an NFT listed on the Ethereum public blockchain. The process “locked” the required amount of a pilot CBDC on the RBA’s pilot CBDC platform and minted an equivalent amount of wrapped pilot CBDC tokens on Ethereum.

A pre-requisite of the test transaction was that the Ethereum wallets of both the buyer and seller and the NFT marketplace smart contract were ‘allow-listed’ within the platform. With all other transfers of the wrapped pilot CBDC blocked, it successfully demonstrated the platform’s ability to implement controls – even on public blockchains. 

The pilot leveraged two pillars of Multi Token Network, which Mastercard introduced in June 2023 as a set of foundational capabilities designed to enable more efficient payment and commerce applications using blockchain technology. This includes Mastercard Crypto Credential, which offers a set of common verification standards and infrastructure to enable trusted interactions using blockchain networks, in addition to interoperability to offer capabilities across all supported payment tokens and networks in a scalable manner.


RBC and Xero to help Canadian businesses automate payables processes

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and Xero have announced an integration designed to allow business customers to sync their RBC PayEdge account with Xero to simplify and automate payments to suppliers worldwide.

Canadian businesses using Xero will now be able to import authorised invoice details into RBC PayEdge, fund and pay their suppliers through their chosen method, and automatically post the reconciling journal entry back to Xero once done.

As a result, businesses can automate their invoice-to-pay process and manage their payments workflow from one location, which may lead to increased efficiency and savings. With access to cash flow data, business owners no longer need to wait for month-end statements and can effectively streamline processes to improve overall financial administration.

“Adopting the latest digital payment solutions and technologies is one of the fastest growing priorities for small businesses who are increasingly looking for innovative ways to simplify and expedite their payment needs while maximising their cash flow,” says Lisa Lansdowne-Higgins, senior vice president, Business Transformation and Deposits, RBC. 

“The ability to pay supplier bills is a crucial part of conducting day-to-day business,” added Faye Pang, Canada country manager, Xero. “The integration with RBC PayEdge will simplify the bill pay experience, allow small businesses to access cost-efficient payment methods, and give an up-to-date view of their cash flow so they can make better business decisions.”


WooCommerce and Veem to extend B2B payments to merchants

Payments provider Veem has partnered with WooCommerce, an open-source e-commerce platform built on WordPress, to help streamline payables and receivables for e-commerce businesses globally. The Veem B2B extension is now available on the WooCommerce marketplace. This extension is designed to enable businesses to seamlessly integrate payment collection into their checkout flow without paying any interchange fees. It should also enable businesses to manage their payables both domestically and internationally.

Veem’s new extension on the WooCommerce platform will be the first of its kind, enabling businesses to accept payments online from customers and other businesses globally. The Veem extension can be installed into any WordPress-hosted website, to provide buyers with flexible payment options and merchants with a convenient way to collect and send payments.

“WooCommerce merchants are looking for ways to digitize their processes for accounts payables and receivables” said Marwan Forzley, CEO of Veem. “Through this partnership, merchants around the world would be able to easily collect against their larger-ticket sales as well as pay their suppliers and contractors globally."


Trade Ledger offers banks access to AI solution for embedded business finance

Following the launch of its generative AI-enabled Working Capital Copilot solution at Sibos 2023 in Toronto, Trade Ledger is now accepting applications from banks to join its beta program, which is being deployed by Accenture. Copilot, built on top of Trade Ledger's data platform, “is the last component of the tech stack required to effectively crack open the US$120 trillion embedded lending opportunity for working capital finance,” according to Trade Ledger CEO Martin McCann.

A few banks will be accepted for the beta program, giving them exclusive early access to the world’s first generative AI interface for embedded complex business finance. Copilot will not be generally available to other Trade Ledger customers until sometime in 2025.

Through Working Capital Copilot, participating banks can enable their business customers to query their financial data to identify where they need capital and when. Through an API connection with the bank, Copilot then finds bank lending products that fit that need.


Deutsche Bank completes acquisition of Numis

Deutsche Bank has announced that it has completed its acquisition of Numis Corporation. This has led to the introduction of Deutsche Numis, a UK investment bank and adviser.

Deutsche Bank said the transaction accelerates its Global Hausbank strategy to become the first point of contact for clients in financial services and will unlock a deeper engagement with corporates across the UK. Deutsche Numis will serve more than 170 corporate broking clients and will continue to broaden its relationships with existing and new clients by delivering financial and advisory solutions to support their ambitions.

Deutsche Numis will operate across advisory services, corporate broking, and equity capital markets – including IPOs, research, sales and execution. As part of Deutsche Bank Group, Deutsche Numis will also be able to offer broader corporate finance capabilities as well as access to a broad international network.

Alex Ham and Ross Mitchinson will become Co-CEOs of Deutsche Numis, reporting to Henrik Johnsson, Co-Head of EMEA Investment Banking at Deutsche Bank and the new Chairman of Deutsche Numis. Luke Savage, former Chairman of Numis, will continue to sit on the Board and work closely with the leadership team.

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