Varo Money, Inc., a digital banking app for ambitious, responsible millennials who are hands-off with their money, today announced the release of its Future of Banking survey. The national survey, conducted online by Propeller Insights on behalf of Varo Money in August 2017 among more than 1,000 U.S. adults, discovered that Americans today—and especially millennials—are making fewer trips to the bank, spending little time making budgets and are eager to use AI to improve their financial lives.
Americans are banking on AI
Seventy-nine percent of American adults—and 85 percent of millennials (Americans aged 18-34)—agree that AI could help them better manage their finances. 24/7 availability is cited as a top benefit (37 percent), but they would also like:
- Help calculating and implementing a savings plan — 36 percent
- Better visibility into how they spend — 30 percent
- Less room for error — 29 percent
- Unbiased advice — 29 percent
- Help understanding the big picture and not just a snapshot from a short period of time — 28 percent
Fully half of Americans (50 percent) also agree that an AI assistant would be better than they are at creating a budget, and 44 percent say that an AI assistant would be better at saving money.
While the vast majority of Americans (83 percent) would take advantage of AI features if their mobile bank offered them, this is again particularly true of millennials (89 percent), who are most interested in:
- Automatically paying bills — 47 percent
- Analyzing their cash flow — 47 percent
- Setting up automatic savings — 43 percent
- Connecting their accounts (such as checking, credit card and loans) in one place — 42 percent
- Analyzing spend patterns — 41 percent
“Americans today—and particularly millennials—understand how technologies like AI are going to fundamentally change our lives. We founded Varo for this digitally savvy generation,” said Colin Walsh, co-founder and CEO of Varo Money. “By creating a mobile-only bank that puts AI to work for people, we can provide our customers with the full financial picture, proactively notifying them of their spending patterns and helping them bridge cash traps, and, ultimately, achieve their financial goals with maximum ease and minimal hassle.”
Millennials ‘get’ mobile banking
While 90 percent of Americans say they still visit the bank at least once a year, only 37 percent make the trip more often than once per each month, and only 5 percent visit daily. When it comes to making budgets, 63 percent of Americans spend fewer than three hours each month making them.
The vast majority of Americans (87 percent) and even more millennials—92 percent—agree that mobile banking is better than banking online or in person, again citing 24/7 availability (66 percent of Americans and 74 percent of millennials), ease of use when they are on the go (53 percent of Americans and 62 percent of millennials), and not being inconvenienced by having to travel to a physical location (48 percent of Americans and 53 percent of millennials).
Added Walsh, “Americans have become accustomed to managing all aspects of their lives from their phones—their dating lives, their social lives, their work lives. Their financial lives should be no different.”
However, more than half of Americans (52 percent) cite frustrations with their current mobile banking solution, which include not having access to their banker at all times (18 percent), not getting insights or recommendations for their finances (18 percent), and not being able to set goals or auto-save (17 percent).
About Varo Money
Varo Money, Inc. (“Varo”), is a digital banking app for the millions of ambitious, responsible millennials who are hands-off with their money and want a bank that’s going to work for them. Varo is building a mobile banking experience that helps customers cover their expenses, pay their bills, and build their wealth over time—so they can stop worrying about money and go live their lives. Unlike traditional banks or other fintech apps, Varo is building an all-in-one solution with frictionless, integrated, and automated deposit, budgeting, savings, and lending products that help customers bank with ease and achieve better financial outcomes. There’s no reason for a bank branch on every corner anymore when all customers need is a smartphone to meet their banking needs. Based in San Francisco and privately held, Varo has raised $34M with an early funding round led by Warburg Pincus in May of 2016, one of the largest-ever for an early-stage financial technology company. Bank accounts for Varo Money are provided by The Bancorp Bank, Member FDIC. For more information, please visit https://www.varomoney.com and follow us on Twitter @varomoney.