Trying to keep up.

As a friend of mine says, fintech is exhausting. The sheer amount of news — product launches, funding, partnerships, acquisitions — is overwhelming.

I started writing Fintech Takes as a coping mechanism — a structured way to consume all that news, pick out the parts that most interest me, and learn more about them.

How it comes together.

Like anything worthwhile, it starts by standing on the shoulders of giants.

There are a TON of great fintech resources, shared by smart, passionate, experienced fintech experts. I’m a fanatical consumer of the research, observations, and analysis of the following folks:

Newsletters:

This Week in FintechNik Milanovic curates the comprehensive list of fintech news (financings, M&A, product launches, etc.) on a weekly basis (hence the name).

Fintech Brain FoodSimon Taylor helps you get smarter on all things fintech with a weekly digest of fintech news, tweets, recommended reading, big thoughts, rants, and four fintech companies you should know about.

Fintech Business WeeklyJason Mikula substitutes a microscope in for rose-colored glasses; doing objective, well-researched deep dives into fintech regulatory news and business models.

Net InterestMarc Rubinstein goes super deep on an interesting fintech topic or trend every week.

Sar Haribhakti’s Newsletter — written by, you guessed it, Sar Haribhakti, it focuses on fintech VCs and founders with lots of insightful interviews and analysis.

Fintech Today — multiple newsletters per week coming from a crew of smart fintech folks with different perspectives and excellent taste in music.

The Fintech BlueprintLex Sokolin offers valuable analysis on a wide range of fintech topics, everything from super apps to decentralized finance.

Fintech Leaders — from Wharton Fintech Co-President Miguel Armaza. Pairs well with the Wharton Fintech podcast (see below).

Fintech RadarAlan Tsen, a fintech angel investor in Australia, writes about fintech companies and trends that interest him.

a16z Fintech Newsletter — The fintech folks at Andreessen Horowitz aggregate their individual ideas and observations in a combined monthly newsletter that is well worth your time.

Blogs & Articles:

Ron Shevlin writes a Fintech Snark Tank column in Forbes that combines original research with humor and bracing honesty.

Chris Skinner has been writing an insightful blog on all things financial services and fintech for much longer than the term fintech has existed.

Tom Noyes has forgotten more about payments than I will ever know. He doesn’t write super consistently, but his blog is the best place for geeky payment deep dives.

Jim Marous writes more and more frequently than a human being should be capable of, covering banking and digital transformation at The Financial Brand.

Isabel Woodford covers European fintech for Sifted. A combination of news, interviews, and insightful analysis.

Penny Crosman is the Technology Editor for American Banker, covering the latest news and trends in fintech and banking.

Alex Wilhelm writes about fintech and the acronyms that surround it (VC, IPO, SPAC, etc.) better than most over at TechCrunch.

Twitter Threads:

Matthew Janiga (@regulatorynerd) is the go-to source for entertaining, in-depth threads on obscure financial regulations and fintech regulatory trends. Flash the nerd signal and he will appear.

David Roos (@roosontheloos) summarizes the big happenings in fintech each week in a mega thread. Useful for those weeks where fintech goes crazy (so, every week).

Frank Rotman (@fintechjunkie) delivers hard-earned wisdom from the trenches of fintech venture capital investing in threads that you’ll want to bookmark or print off and hang on your wall.

Maximilian Friedrich (@mfriedrichARK) of ARK Invest has data on fintech that you simply can’t get anywhere else and he is very generous in sharing it on Twitter. Definitely worth a follow.

Fintech Podcasts:

One VisionTheo Lau, Bradley Leimer, and Arunkumar Krishnakumar talk about the intersection of technology and purpose; a sorely needed topic in financial services and fintech.

Wharton FintechMiguel Armaza and Ryan Zauk interview the most interesting people in fintech.

Fintech Insider — The smart folks at 11:FS geek out on fintech news and trends.

RebankWill Beeson covers a lot of ground on this podcast; interviews, deep dives, banking, fintech, insurance, VC. You name it.

Breaking BanksBrett King, Jason Henrichs, and JP Nicols have been podcasting about technology disrupting banking before such podcasts were cool.

Lend AcademyPeter Renton interviews fintech and banking executives on their views on the present and future of financial services and lending.

Tearsheet — In addition to great written content, they interview interesting people and companies in banking and fintech.

American Banker — the reporters at American Banker have a regular rotation of podcasts, covering everything from challenger banks to diversity and equality in banking. Bonus points if you make time for John Heltman’s Bankshot podcast. It’s excellent.

Banking Transformed — Jim Marous gets unbelievable guests, from a variety of industries, to come on and talk about digital transformation.

Not Exactly Fintech (unless everything truly is fintech), But You’ll Get Smarter by Also Reading:

Not Boring — Packy McCormick is on a mission to make writing about business and business strategy interesting. He succeeds. Read his stuff.

The Generalist — I took the plunge and became a paying subscriber to Mario Gabriele’s publication and I’m glad I did. S-1 breakdowns. Weekly briefings. Startup ideas. And a wonderful community.

Stratechery — Reading Ben Thompson puts you right at the center of the Venn diagram of business strategy, technology, and media. If you somehow have missed Stratechery up until now, you’re welcome.

Money Stuff — Matt Levine is the 🐐

What you’ll get.

Phew!

After consuming as much of the content listed above as I can, I look for common themes and write about the most interesting ones in a biweekly newsletter.

Each Fintech Takes newsletter includes a long take (a deep-dive into a specific topic) and three short takes (summaries of interesting stories that caught my eye).

Subscribe! You’ll be in great company.

I’m honored to be part of a new wave of commentary and analysis, bringing clarity to a growing and fast-changing industry.

8 New Fintech Newsletters You Should Be Reading

There are newsletters out there doing a good job of reporting what’s going on in fintech. This list includes eight doing a great job of explaining what it means.

Inside the bull market in fintech newsletters

The growth of fintech, the money moving into the space, the new companies being formed and older ones IPOing are bringing new interest, and consequently, new voices and perspectives. In this way, newsletters are a natural fit for delving into topics in the field.

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About Me

My name is Alex Johnson and I coined the term “fintech”.

Kidding.

I’ve been in and around the fintech industry for my entire career; including stops at Zoot Enterprises, Mercator Advisory Group, and FICO. I am currently a Director of Fintech Research at Cornerstone Advisors, where I try to help banks, credit unions, and fintech companies figure what the heck is going on in our industry.

If you want to say hi, hit me up on Twitter or LinkedIn.