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JPMorgan to start UK digital consumer bank: report

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JPMorgan Chase & Co is planning to enter the UK consumer-banking market in the next few months, offering a range of savings and loan products under its Chase brand, Sky News reported, citing unidentified sources.

[LONDON] JPMorgan Chase & Co is planning to enter the UK consumer-banking market in the next few months, offering a range of savings and loan products under its Chase brand, Sky News reported, citing unidentified sources.

The Wall Street stalwart has been in discussions with regulators about securing the necessary approvals to operate in UK personal banking, Sky said. Clive Adamson, former head of supervision at the Financial Conduct Authority and a non-executive director at JPMorgan Securities plc, will helm the project, the Financial Times reported.

A JPMorgan spokesman declined to comment to Bloomberg.

New York-based JPMorgan would be jumping into a consumer-banking market that's in a state of flux. Fintech players such as Monzo Bank Ltd and Starling Bank Ltd have attracted millions of customers looking for alternatives to the traditional institutions such as HSBC Holdings plc and Barclays plc.

The prospective launch could also pit JPMorgan against Goldman Sachs Group Inc's online-only bank called Marcus, which opened in the UK in September 2018, though a City source told Sky that JPMorgan was planning a wider range of products. Marcus, which offers savings accounts, is expected to add more services as it steps up its presence in Britain.

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Fierce competition in the notoriously tough UK banking market may already be taking its toll. Last week, N26 GmbH, a German digital bank backed by investor Peter Thiel, announced it was withdrawing from Britain after four years. The company blamed Brexit for its retreat but the crowded marketplace may have been a factor as well. Another German digital bank, Fidor Bank, also quit the UK last year.

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