Sorry Banks, Millennials Hate You

A three-year study finds that millennials are looking for ways to live a bank-free existence in the future.

When Scratch polled 10,000 millennials to find out which industry was most prime for disruption, the results were clear: Not only did banks make up four of their top 10 most hated brands, but millennials increasingly viewed these financial institutions as irrelevant.

The three-year study from Scratch, an in-house unit of Viacom that consults with brands, found that a third of millennials believed they'll be able to live a bank-free existence in the future. In the age of Simple, Square, and Bitcoin, these millennials, defined as those born between 1981 and 2000, overwhelmingly believed that the way they access money and pay for things will be completely different in five years.

"As consumers, millennials have been slow to accumulate wealth. They have huge debt. They're facing unprecedented underemployment. They've been relatively unaddressed as a generation by banks. All of a sudden, you see purchasing power by millennials growing to over $1.3 trillion," Scratch executive vice president Ross Martin told Fast Company.

As a result, this digital-savvy cohort is looking to the tech sector to provide banking solutions. Half of respondents said they were counting on startups to overhaul how banks work, and three-quarters said they would be more excited in financial services provided by Google, Amazon, Apple, PayPal, or Square than from their own banks.

"We're hearing so loud and clearly from our biggest audience that there's a whole industry that's not meeting their needs," Martin said. "We see such a big opportunity for banks here."

[Image: Flickr user Images_of_Money]

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15 Comments

  • Lorraine Cyr

    I am 50 and I despise banks. Heres the thing, I work hard for my money, put it in the bank and all of a sudden the bank thinks its thiers. They charge me for every little thing, call me constantly to sell me something I don`t need (like insurance etc.). I hate bankers to, all they do is sit on thier ass in thier stinky suits pushing paper around and figuring out ways to scam us out of more money. And they get paid well for doing this with mine and your money. I want to close all of my bank accounts and cash my checks at a money mart or something like that. I know it will still cost me a little to do that but at least I can take MY MONEY with me and have control over it.

  • marybrownsmith2010

    I work for an asset management company that is run by a bunch of middle aged white men and people who think they are smarter than they actually are! If I was smart I would never work in financial services and yes, that includes investment banking, which is basically where someone is trying to legitimize gambling with numbers, models and thesis.

  • David Quintana

    for a lack of a better place to put this complain in I will do it here. The retail banking system is shit. I think that it is profitable to really help people manage their money and create access to credit. Instead we have a system that traps people with products they don't need and it doesn't solve real issues. The problem is the people banks (credit unions too) hire and promote. I have work for two banks and a credit union and I seen the people that move ahead on that industry. Mindless zombies that can repeat the sales scripts to every single person that walks into the door. Talk to a banker about finances for at least half an hour and you will realize how little they know or care about it. Their job is to get as many people as they can to fill an application for a loan. Once press for the specifics every single banker as told me that they don't know how the credit decisions are made because is done by the underwriter. I'm a general contractor and I have to do abide by the decisions

  • Wallace Wood

    Can anyone say "Diginomics"? That is what we call this new world of "digital economics." It's an ever-expanding term in a global evolution toward total friction-free commerce. I'm a "boomer," so I remember what the world was like without the Internet. The "Mils" don't, and that's the whole point. Social trends go the way of the newest, most innovative wave of the current generation: from stone to steel, from steam-driven to solar-powered. Likewise, Millennials do not write checks, and they yearn for something more convenient than the swipe of a plastic card and the encoding of a pin number. Diginomics is the future which, oddly enough, is rapidly becoming more present than distant ... as surveys like this are proving.

  • I am a millenial and work on ebanking in medium size bank, and im sorry to tell you that a disruption is difficult to happen in this type of industry because is to regulated its not that any company can come and play i do believe banks can do a better job adressing millenials, but they dont do it because they target people in ages 30 to 45 in their financial prime.

  • The truth is that banks don't exist to do anyone any good. They take your money, use it in their own investment portfolios to build their own wealth (while still showing your "balance" as equal to what you put in), and meanwhile charge a whole slew of account maintenance fees, transfer fees, etc. In short, they are pretty much a Ponzi scheme (look at what happens in the Euro zone when an economy goes awry- banks limit withdrawals in order to keep the scheme alive).

    If you're still using a regular old bank as a savings vessel you need to wake up.

  • Nicholas Paul

    I don't get what the big deal is? I, also a millennial, find that we have this constant problem of complaining about life and stuff and what we don't have and about what we want, blah blah blaah. But the millennials, the innovators of this era, are saying that, according to this study, "waaaaah, we don't want banks, but someone from outside the country has to develop it for us because we are just plain TIRED of this".

    So.. really what I'm getting at...

    1. I still don't get what is the issue with banks (and maybe its because I do have a good bank USAA... I really don't pay any fees for, well anything, and I'm great at saving now so I haven't over drafted since I was 14 ((see; I live within my means))

    2. If you want this change, this revolution, start it here. We are so content to march down a street waving banners about how life is not fair and whatnot but we (millennials) suck so bad about causing that change we claim we want. Where are our innovators?

  • As one of the oldest millennials, I can't WAIT to see the storm of disruption wreak its havoc on this industry. It has been the least innovative, least forward thinking business of any I have to deal with on a daily basis.