Entering the world of stock market investment is a complex effort that necessitates careful consideration of a variety of diverse factors. Among the numerous industries that have gained importance in recent years, one stands out as a source of fascination: financial technology, informally known as FinTech. We will go on an exploratory adventure in the coming discussion, unraveling the various rationales demonstrating the indispensability of FinTech stocks within any well-diversified portfolio. In doing so, we will highlight their enormous potential, highlight the numerous benefits they provide, and navigate the tangled web of questions that surrounds this strong investment option.
List of Contents
- What Exactly Is FinTech Stocks?
- Types of FinTech Stocks
- Key Factors to Consider Before Investing in FinTech Stocks
- When to Buy FinTech Stocks
- Risks of FinTech Stocks Investing
- The Future of FinTech Stocks
What Exactly Is FinTech Stocks?
FinTech stocks are the shares of publicly traded companies in the FinTech sector. They represent the cutting edge of technological leverage in the delivery of ground-breaking financial services and solutions. FinTech stocks allow investors to participate in the growth and potential profitability of these companies, which are disrupting traditional financial institutions and redefining the industry.
FinTech stocks include payment processors, digital wallet providers, online lenders, crowdfunding platforms, robo-advisors, and blockchain-based firms. Each company has a unique emphasis and business approach, catering to various niches within the enormous financial services sector.
When opposed to traditional financial companies, investing in FinTech firms provides chances for exponential growth and potentially enhanced rewards. The FinTech business is seeing significant growth, fueled by rising consumer demand for digital financial services, extraordinary technological developments, and regulatory changes that encourage innovation. As individuals and organizations increasingly use FinTech solutions, the opportunities for revenue growth and market share expansion for FinTech companies grow.
Nonetheless, it is critical to recognize that stock investing contains inherent dangers. The performance of FinTech stocks is affected by a variety of factors, including current market conditions, fierce rivalry, regulatory transformations, cyber risks, and the overall financial strength of the different organizations. Prudent investors must conduct extensive study and rigorous analysis before making investment selections, taking into account critical factors such as the company’s financial soundness, growth potential, competitive stance, and management team caliber.
Diversification is essential in risk management, just as it is in any investment. A well-structured portfolio of FinTech and other equities can reduce risk and maximize returns. To choose investments that match financial goals, risk tolerance, and investing time horizons, consult a financial advisor or do considerable research.
Types of FinTech Stocks
Genuinely, FinTech companies can be classified in several ways. Moreover, there will always be an overlap between the chosen categories. However, most of them fall into one of the following five categories.
1. Payments and Digital Wallets
There are already thousands of online services that provide basic financial services around the globe. Few payment networks have worldwide reach, although most nations currently have many local platforms. Like bank accounts, digital wallets can only be accessed via a website or mobile application. From these wallets, digital payments may be made effortlessly and often circumvent the banking system. In developing market countries, where few individuals have access to traditional bank accounts, mobile payments and banking services have had a big influence.
2. Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain Technology
Most issues in the financial industry, as well as those in other sectors of the economy, are being addressed by blockchain technology. In essence, cryptocurrencies are programmable money that enables the emergence of whole new financial services. Hundreds of decentralized finance (Defi) apps operating on multiple blockchains are being developed. Defi apps provide trading, investing, lending, and money market services for cryptocurrencies and physical assets. These applications run independently of any central authority. This list’s crypto category overlaps with every other category.
3. Crowdfunding and Lending
P2P or peer-to-peer lending systems promote loans and fundraising for individuals, small enterprises, and organizations. P2P financing is advantageous for lenders and borrowers since intermediary margins are eliminated. These platforms can also make credit accessible to individuals who have difficulty borrowing from conventional lenders. Crowdfunding platforms assist individuals and nonprofits in acquiring tiny contributions from a wide audience. Additionally, small enterprises can raise funding using these networks.
4. Investing and Financial Markets
Investing and trading is possibly the most dynamic sector for FinTech startups. In the 1990s, internet trading platforms were among the world’s earliest FinTech enterprises. Since then, FinTech companies have transformed the majority of the investing business. Some examples of these sorts of businesses include the following:
They assist people in saving for their financial goals. These platforms utilize quantitative models to optimize a client’s asset allocation before implementing the approach with passive investment funds.
It is excellent for different financial data sets and algorithmic trading techniques.
Stock Trading Apps
It facilitates stock investing for regular customers. These businesses prioritize streamlining the investment process and creating a smooth consumer experience.
5. Other FinTech Niches
FinTech companies are present in nearly every sector of the financial industry. By aggregating information from numerous institutions, many of the earliest FinTech applications and websites helped individuals manage their budgets. Additionally, mortgage origination systems have existed for some time. These websites enable customers to obtain mortgage quotations from various lenders through a single application. Insurance is the newest frontier for FinTech. It has taken digital businesses a long time to disrupt the insurance market because a substantial critical mass is necessary. However, as competition in other fintech industries has intensified, more capital may be invested in insurance-focused fintech startups.
Key Factors to Consider Before Investing in FinTech Stocks
Cyclicality is the susceptibility of an industry or company to recessions and other economic swings. As an illustration, a hotel is a cyclical company since fewer people go during difficult economic times. In contrast, healthcare is not a cyclical industry since people require access to healthcare services regardless of the state of the economy. Some FinTech companies are highly cyclical. Not only do credit card issuers like American Express and Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) rely on the desire of individuals and companies to spend money, but during economic downturns, more people tend to have difficulty paying their payments.
On the other hand, payment processors such as Visa and Mastercard are less cyclical. Although relying on fee income from spending, they are not lenders and do not face the same level of failure risk.
One of the primary variables determining the safety of any stock, including FinTech, is a competitive risk.
Consider Visa (NYSE: V) and Mastercard as an example (NYSE: MA). They are not just the leaders in payment processing; they control the industry. Conversely, the recently publicized insurance technology firm Lemonade (NYSE: LMND) competes in a very competitive field with several far larger competitors.
3. Sales Growth
The amount of revenue growth is a criterion you have to use to evaluate each potential FinTech stock. It is essential to check not just for exceptional growth in the current quarter or fiscal year, but also for an established and continuous growth history.
In addition, it is essential to ensure sufficient space for the growth rate to be sustained. If a company had $1 billion in yearly sales and grew its revenue by 30% last year, you would be more enthusiastic if the whole market size were $50 billion than if it were $3 billion.
4. Balance Sheet and Profitability
Genuinely, numerous companies in the FinTech industry are not yet profitable. Thus, that is acceptable as long as they expand and have a clear route to profitability. For instance, Square (NYSE: SQ) is not yet consistently profitable, but nobody seems to care as the stock has lately reached all-time highs. The reason is that investors are pleased with Square’s choice to reinvest significantly in its business as the company continues to quickly expand its business quarter after quarter.
5. Competitive Advantages
Similarly, a persistent competitive advantage may help level the playing field between large, established, innovative companies. There are several kinds of competitive advantages. Common competitive advantages in the FinTech industry include proprietary technology, patents, and other forms of intellectual property. The insurance tech startup Lemonade was highlighted in the preceding section. Despite being tiny and competing in a crowded market, the business’s artificial intelligence quotation platform is superior to what is currently available.
When to Buy FinTech Stocks
The straightforward answer is that there is never a bad moment to purchase good FinTech stocks. The reason is that attempting to time the market is typically useless. Moreover, this is especially true when attempting to anticipate the fortunes of quickly expanding enterprises. Although a company’s value and performance should be considered, FinTech investors should not depend excessively on traditional valuation criteria, which may make most fintech companies appear too costly.
Significantly, you should focus on innovative companies with sustainable competitive advantages and great management teams when deciding which FinTech stocks to buy. Don’t focus solely on valuation. However, if you believe that a certain FinTech stock may be overpriced, you may choose to use dollar-cost averaging to gradually develop your stake. In addition, before deciding which fintech stocks to buy, you can also consider reviewing the top 5 FinTech stocks to watch in 2022.
Risks of FinTech Stocks Investing
FinTech is not an exception to the concept that high-growth stocks carry obvious risks. Although they generally performed well during the COVID-19 epidemic, FinTech stocks might be extremely cyclical if a normal recession were to begin. Most enterprises in the fintech industry rely on customers and businesses being ready and able to spend money, which may swiftly fall in uncertain times.
In the previous market downturns, growth stocks have been among the poorest performers, and several of the large FinTech highlighted have been particularly severely affected. Therefore, if you are a patient long-term investor, it may be sensible to seek out great FinTech businesses trading at comparatively lower values.
The Future of FinTech Stocks
In the realm of technological advancements and the surging demand for digital solutions, the future of FinTech stocks gleams with promise. Delving into the forthcoming years, we shall explore the pivotal elements that will sculpt their trajectory.
1. Paving the Way for Growth
Regulatory frameworks emerge as indispensable agents in molding the destiny of FinTech stocks, fostering innovation, and safeguarding consumer interests. Governments worldwide are adapting their policies to accommodate these burgeoning technologies, establishing an environment conducive to innovation while upholding financial stability.
2. Enhancing Security and Efficiency
Blockchain technology, the bedrock of cryptocurrencies, has already wrought a revolution in the financial industry. Its decentralized nature bestows augmented security, curtails transaction costs, and streamlines processes. As the evolution of blockchain continues unabated, it is poised to assume a pivotal role in shaping the future of FinTech stocks.
3. Driving Automation and Personalization
Artificial Intelligence (AI) bears the potential to metamorphose financial services, bestowing intelligent automation and personalized experiences. AI-driven algorithms, scrutinizing vast troves of data, enable FinTech companies to furnish bespoke financial advice, assess risks, and detect fraud. This technology shall prove instrumental in shaping the future of FinTech stocks.
4. Empowering Consumers and Fostering Collaboration
The global traction gained by Open Banking, allowing third-party financial service providers access to customer banking data with explicit consent, is a movement that empowers consumers and engenders innovative collaborations between FinTech companies and traditional banks. The future of FinTech stocks shall witness an amplified synergy between these stakeholders.
5. Democratizing Investment Management
Robo-advisory platforms have garnered immense popularity, democratizing investment management by proffering low-cost, automated investment solutions. Leveraging algorithms and machine learning, these platforms dispense personalized investment recommendations tailored to individual goals and risk tolerance. As more investors embrace this approach, FinTech stocks in the robo-advisory space stand poised for substantial growth.
In conclusion, investing in FinTech stocks is imperative for portfolio diversification and capitalizing on the transformative potential of the financial industry. With technological advancements, supportive regulatory frameworks, and shifting consumer preferences, FinTech stocks offer a unique opportunity for investors. The adoption of blockchain technology, the utilization of artificial intelligence, and the proliferation of mobile payment solutions have revolutionized financial services. These innovations enhance security, streamline processes, and cater to the growing demand for convenient and accessible financial solutions.
By including FinTech stocks in a portfolio, investors can tap into the growth potential of these disruptive technologies and capitalize on their expanding market reach. However, it is crucial to conduct thorough research, assess risk, and stay updated with the evolving FinTech landscape. In a world where digital solutions are reshaping traditional industries, FinTech stocks represent a must-have asset class that can provide diversification, potential returns, and exposure to the future of finance.
In 2023, it will be important to keep an eye on several FinTech trends, including Embedded Finance, Decentralized Finance (DeFi), Artificial Intelligence (Al), Digital Currencies, and RegTech.
Visa and Mastercard, Stripe, and Dapper Labs are the top three companies in terms of revenue and market capitalization. However, there will be additional FinTech businesses with higher incomes that should be mentioned.
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Source: Fool, Lehner investments