The word ‘fintech’ is a contrast of two halves

Sir, Your instructive report “Online lenders count cost of push for growth” (Dec. 15) recounts their rising defaults and credit losses. This points out the contrast between the two halves of “fintech” when it comes to innovation. The “tech” part can indeed create something technologically new. Alas, the “fin” part — lending people money in the hope that they will pay it back — is an old art, and one subject to smart people making mistakes. In finance, “innovation” can be just an optimistic name for lowering credit standards and increasing risk, with inevitable defaults and losses following in its train.


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