In this paper we explore the likely implications of the entry of Big Tech platforms into retail banking and the appropriate response of regulators and policy makers to this new industry development. We find that the entry of Big Tech platforms may transform the banking industry in radical ways: while it may possibly increase competition to the benefit of consumers in the short term, within a few years Big Tech companies may succeed in monopolizing the origination and distribution of loans to consumers and SMEs, forcing traditional banks to become “low cost manufacturers,” which merely fund the loans intermediated by the Big Techs. This may harm competition, reduce consumer welfare and bring about an increase in financial instability in the medium or long term. We discuss alternative policy responses aimed at maximising the positive impact on consumer welfare of Big Tech entry, while limiting the risk of monopolization as well as the potential adverse implications of such entry on market integrity and financial stability.
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