Happy Sunday,

Economy added 184,000 jobs last month. Fed’s rate cut position unchanged. NewRetirement, Brim announce funding rounds. PayPal and Venmo add Visa+ capability. Treasury Prime and Narmi partner on FedNow. Tally latest to attempt B2B pivot. Chase launches marketing business unit. Cross River and Trustly expand collaboration.

New here? Subscribe here to get our newsletter each Sunday. For even more updates, follow us on LinkedIn (PeerIQ by Cross River).

Economy Added 184,000 Jobs in March

The U.S. economy keeps adding jobs. Per ADP data, private payrolls grew by 184,000 in March, the largest gain since last July. Wage growth also continued to increase for those switching jobs. When it comes to rates, Fed Chair Powell says the central bank has time to wait and see. Recent higher-than-expected inflation figures haven’t changed the Fed’s position. Atlanta Fed President Bostic weighed in, saying he expects progress on inflation to be “bumpy,” but anticipating one cut this year, in the fourth quarter. Finally, growth in the U.S. services sector slowed for the second month in a row as input costs declined.

Image: Bloomberg

NewRetirement Announced $20Mn Series A

NewRetirement, a financial planning and wellness platform, announced it has raised a $20Mn Series A. The company’s platform uses a financial modeling and planning engine to offer consumers tools that empower them to create their own financial plan, including taking into account estate planning, pensions, Medicare, Social Security, taxes, and human capital, among other factors. NewRetirement also plans to integrate large language models and AI into the platform in order to provide “more personalized” recommendations. Investors in the round include Fin Capital, Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures, Cameron Ventures, and Marin Sonoma Impact Ventures.

Brim Scores $85Mn Series C

Brim, a Canada-based credit-card-as-a-service platform, announced it has raised an $85Mn Series C. The company has already achieved significant traction in its home market, working with numerous banks, credit unions, and brands that include Affinity Credit Union, CWB, and Air France-KLM. Brim is already live in the United States, working with several mid-market banks. It plans to use the additional funding to continue scaling its American business. The Series C was led by EDC Investments, with participation from Vistara Growth, White Owl Group, Epic Ventures, and Zions Bank.

PayPal And Venmo Add Visa+ Cross-Platform P2P Capabilities

PayPal and PayPal-owned Venmo are joining neobank Current and Western Union to enable cross-platform money movement via Visa+. Cross River Bank, Fiserv, Brightwell, and Astra also intend to implement Visa+ for merchant and digital wallet clients by this fall. Visa+, if it achieves widespread adoption, could reduce the need for third-party payment apps, like Cash App and Venmo, by embedding this capability directly into users’ existing banking services. Still, P2P payment apps have gained widespread adoption and may be hard to displace.

Treasury Prime Partners with Narmi on FedNow

BaaS platform Treasury Prime is partnering with Narmi to make FedNow real-time payments available to customers. The collaboration will make the recently-launched FedNow service available to Treasury Prime’s fintech customers, enabling them to embed the offering into their customer-facing products and services. Given the complexity of deploying FedNow, many smaller institutions have opted to use a service provider, like Narmi, to act on their behalves, including connecting to the Federal Reserve, posting transactions to the banks’ core systems, and meeting operational and compliance requirements.

Tally Latest Fintech to Pivot to B2B

Tally is the latest consumer fintech to attempt to pivot to selling software it created to others. The company began as a consumer debt management tool, including by offering a line of credit for debt consolidation. Since launching in 2015, Tally says it has helped its users pay down some $2Bn in credit card debt. Now, the company is pivoting to focus on selling its software for debt management to others. It offers an Android, iOS, and web software development kit (SDK), as well as an API that allows others to build features on top of Tally’s existing capabilities. Tally is the latest consumer fintech to pivot to B2B, including Onyx Private and HM Bradley. But, selling software to financial institutions, especially banks, is no easy feat, and typically comes with long sales cycle and often burdensome due diligence reviews.

Chase to Leverage Payments Data for Marketing Offering

Chase is making good use of its treasure trove of payment data by launching an ads business, the Wall Street Journal reported last week. The new group, Chase Media Solutions, will let advertisers target Chase customers with deals and discounts based on their spending history. Unlike most ad platforms, Chase will only charge advertisers when customers actually make a purchase from an offered deal. Chase is the latest to lean into monetizing data through advertising. Amazon has long generated significant profits from such efforts, as has Uber. And brick and mortar retailer Walmart recently announced it was increasing its efforts in the space. Still, such practices, especially from financial services companies, have the potential to attract unwanted regulatory attention related to “data harvesting” and consumer privacy.

Cross River and Trustly Expand Collaboration

Cross River and Trustly have expanded their collaboration in instant payments through their addition of the FedNow Service. With the addition, Trustly’s merchants will gain access to new capabilities to optimize the routing of funds instantly through Cross River’s API endpoint. Trustly CEO Alexandre Gonthier added, “With Cross River, we are thrilled to pioneer FedNow transactions, marking yet another milestone in our journey to revolutionize account-to-account payments. With FedNow, we continue to advance Open Banking Payments, giving consumers the freedom and option to use their bank accounts as the centers of commerce.”

In the News:

Piermont, Sutton banks hit with FDIC consent orders over BaaS (Banking Dive, 4/1/2024) Both banks, focused on BaaS and fintech, are the latest to receive consent orders.

Custodia Bank Loses Lawsuit Challenging Fed Rejection of Master Account Application (Coindesk, 3/29/2024) The Fed has discretion in granting accounts, a judge ruled.

Nuvei Goes Private in $6.3 Billion Sale to Advent International (PYMNTS, 4/1/2024) The Canadian payments firm, which counts actor Ryan Reynolds as an investor, is going private.

Scayl Raises $108 Million for FinTech Lenders (PYMNTS, 4/3/2024) The debt financing platform has raised $108Mn to lend to other European fintechs.

Rakuten Could Combine Bank and FinTech Operations (PYMNTS, 4/1/2024) The Japanese conglomerate announced plans to merge its insurance, securities, card, bank, and fintech business lines.

Visa Adds Subscription Manager to Digital Enablement Suite for Issuers (PYMNTS, 4/3/2024) Visa now supports subscription management feature issuers can offer to cardholders.

US-based NWSB taps Apiture to upgrade digital banking capabilities (Fintech Futures, 4/2/2024) New Washington State Bank selected Apiture’s Digital Banking Platform.

Luma collaborates with BNY Mellon’s Pershing to provide annuity management solutions (Finextra, 4/2/2024) Users of BNY Mellon’s NetX360 platform will get access to Luma’s tools and analytics.

Bybit Card integrates with Google Pay (Finextra, 4/2/2024) Crypto exchange Bybit’s card is now usable via Google Pay.

Visa expands partnerships worldwide, Swift tests digital currencies (American Banker, 4/3/2024) Visa is working with Thunes, LemFi, and Western Union to expand its reach.

Lighter Fare:

Takeaways, Surprises, and Slights From the NYT ‘100 Best Restaurants’ List (Eater, 4/2/2024) What you need to know before eating in New York City.