McDonald’s to roll out UberEATS delivery

McDonald's to roll out UberEats deliveryBeginning in January 2017, customers will be able to order items from McDonald’s fast food menu to be delivered through UberEATS, reported Fortune.

The doorstep delivery venture for the popular fast food eatery will start with 200 chains across Orlando, Tampa and Miami and expand from there. The plan is part of a larger initiative to win back consumers. Last month the company announced implementing table service, self-service kiosk ordering, advanced menu boards with technology and new sandwiches.

The fast food giant anticipates up to 25,000 restaurant chains to eventually partner with the new app.

According to Nation’s Restaurant News, in its one-year lifespan UberEATS has grown to 29 U.S. markets and 56 global markets. Analysts Kevin Kopelman and Andrew Charles, with Cowen and Company, see the merge with McDonald’s as a “vote of confidence” for the delivery service.

“We see the test as a positive sign for both consumer demand and restaurant concept supply in food delivery, and the outcome could be an important data point for the industry,” Kopelman and Charles wrote in a memo Friday morning.

UberEATS will not be the first delivery service the burger joint has paired with, however. DoorDash and Postmates have already been delivering fast food items from McDonald’s to customers.

U.S. manufacturing sector continues to gain strength

U.S. manufacturing sector continues to gain strengthEconomic activity in the construction sector has continued to remain strong, while the manufacturing sector also looks to be on the rebound, according to TruckingInfo, a provider of online news and information for trucking.

Growth in the manufacturing sector was up 1.3 percent from October, with the Purchasing Manager’s Index registering 53.2 percent for November, according to The Institute for Supply Management. The measurement marked the highest reading in five months and even surpassed a consensus forecast by analysts on Wall Street.

Any reading above 50 percent stipulates expansion, according to the source. The positive data for both manufacturing and construction is a strong indicator that the U.S. economy is gaining momentum. Overall, it was the 90th straight month of economic growth.

At the top of the manufacturing report were the miscellaneous manufacturing and petroleum and coal products sectors, according to Reuters. The index is based on markers such as production, inventories, new orders, supply deliveries and employment, and compiled with survey results from more than 300 manufacturing firms.

“Of the 18 manufacturing industries, 11 are reporting growth in November,” Bradley Holcomb, chairman of the Institute for Supply Management, said in the report.

States may pick up the slack in bank regulation…are you prepared?

It wasn’t just the American electorate that was caught off-guard with this past election result, as many banks are scrambling to understand what this means for the next four years.  Regardless of how you feel about the election results, it’s important to consider where we go from here and how it will affect the needs within your bank moving forward.

Consider this statement from a Nov 16th article at ‘Faced with a less aggressive CFPB, state attorneys general and financial regulators may be emboldened to ramp up their enforcement activity, with Democratic-controlled states such as New York, California and Illinois already known for an activist approach likely to take the lead.’ This is something very few are talking about within the industry right now, but this concept is beginning to pick up steam.

A Nov. 23rd editorial at states ‘the pendulum is likely to swing once again in the direction of state regulation and enforcement, and away from active federal prosecution.’

Based on conversations with numerous banks throughout the country over the course of this year at The Richmond Group, it seems many banks were gearing up for the exact opposite.  However, with two well-established publications predicting a sea-change in bank regulation enforcement, the question for your bank needs to be: what are you doing to get ahead of this?

This change doesn’t necessarily mean having to install an entirely new team in the back office.  One of the most effective things a bank can do is make sure they have the highest level quality bankers on the front end.

Are your commercial lenders adept in credit?  If so, this will help mitigate a lot of the regulatory problems seen at other banks.  If your team of commercial lenders are more sales-focused, it may be time to consider adding a couple of senior lenders that can mentor the rest of your team in credit and lead by example.

While it may seem overly-simplistic, this solution may be the best way to ensure that your bank stays safe and clean at all times.  Regardless of the headwinds.

Positive Momentum Heading into the New Year

November was an exciting month.  The Dow surged past record highs following the election even though the strong dollar is still impacting corporate profitability.  US manufacturing shrugged off uncertainties with a stronger than expected results.  The ISM manufacturing index rose from October’s 51.9% to 53.2% in November which is higher than their 52.3% estimate.  The Commerce Department reported that from July 2016 through September 2016 the U.S. economy grew at an annual rate of 3.2% which is the fastest rate in two years.  The US unemployment rate is still at 4.9% which is close to what economists consider full employment, and US employers have been adding 181,000 jobs a month so far this year, which is solid but down from 229,000 a month in 2015.  There are still a lot of uncertainties ahead of us in 2017, but 2016 is ending on a high note.


Bruce Peacock
Vice President of Business Development
The Richmond Group USA

Fintech blockchain positions in demand in 2017

Fintech blockchain positions in demand in 2017The financial technology sector is booming, and many industry analysts predict that jobs related to the blockchain will be the most lucrative next year.

Recently, 2017 was hailed as “the year of the blockchain” by technology journalist John Kennedy in an article for Silicon Republic.

Blockchain technology is that which enables digital transactions to be made, and can involve financial transactions or those involving security properties, customer information or personal identity information, as the article explained. Investment is growing in the field, with Pricewaterhouse Coopers funneling $1.4 billion into blockchain startups since February 2016.

With the expansion of the blockchain technology forecast for next year, coding jobs will be particularly in demand, especially as they relate to blockchain applications in the financial technology, or fintech, industry, according to a post by Nako Mbelle, founder of FinTech Recruiters, in a post for Finance Magnates.

Financial services firms looking to strengthen their blockchain development will specifically be looking for senior backend engineers and cryptographers, according to the source, and technical skills like encryption, programming and cybersecurity will be some of the most desired.

The article noted that blockchain systems engineers can make an annual salary of between $150,000 and $175,000 in the U.S.

Surgeon tops list of highest paying jobs in 2016

Surgeon tops list of highest paying jobs in 2016Surgeon is the highest paying job in 2016, according to a report from CareerCast.

The position garnered an aggregated median income of $357,192 this year, with a growth outlook of 14 percent, according to the report, which ranked the top 10 highest paying jobs in 2016.

In a survey conducted by Medscape, surgeons working in office-based multi-speciality group practices were found to have the highest income, followed by those working in healthcare organizations and office-based single-speciality group practices. Some 66 percent of dermatology surgeons felt that they were fairly compensated, the highest of any specialization, while urology surgeons had the smallest share of those who felt fairly compensated. Dermatology surgeons also had the highest percentage of respondents who were satisfied with their career, at 65 percent.

Following surgeon in the CareerCast ranking was psychiatrist, earning an annual median salary of $207,153, and military general, receiving an annual median salary of $205,144. Also making the top 10 were data scientist and petroleum engineer, both of which CareerCast recognized for their high growth outlooks.

The report also analyzed the most stressful jobs of the year, with public relations executive taking the No. 1 spot.