Rolling Stone journalist and Griftopia author Matt Taibbi famously called Goldman Sachs a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.
But what if this generations biggest blood-sucker isnt Wall Streets evil banks, but the worlds most prolific e-commerce company?
Look no further than everyones favorite next-day delivery leader: Amazon-dot-com. Jeff Bezos & Co. are helping Amazon grow new tentacles every month to morph the $730 billion beast into one of the biggest companies on earth. Prime delivers your most important stuff straight to your door. Prime Video streams your entertainment. Amazons new Whole Foods acquisition is ready to handle all your organic food needs.
Now, Amazon wants your bank account. The king of e-commerce is reportedly in preliminary talks with JPMorgan and other major banks about rolling out its own checking account.
Why the push to get into banking?
Because if you want to control the world, you must control your customers from the beginning of their purchases right to the very end
If the product emerges, it would further inject Amazon into the lives of those who shop on its website and at its Whole Foods grocery stores, read on its Kindles, watch its streaming video and chat with Alexa, its digital assistant, the Wall Street Journal reports. Offering a product that is similar to an own-branded bank account could help reduce fees Amazon pays to financial firms and provide it with valuable data on customers income and spending habits.
An Amazon-branded checking account linked directly to your Amazon.com purchases through Prime, Prime Video, and Amazon Fresh/Whole Foods has the potential to control much of your everyday spending.
But were especially interested in how an Amazon checking account would pair with Alexa.
Amazons industry-leading voice assistant can recite the weather, tell you the days top headlines, and play your favorite music. She can even make all your crazy delivery dreams come true no button-pushing required. Just whisper your demands within earshot of your Echo and she does your bidding.
Now imagine the power of Alexas voice commands combined with direct access to your checking account. Its a match made in heaven for Amazons top line.
Voice emerging as the next tech battleground was one of our big 2018 market predictions. After all, the easiest operating system to use is one you cant see. Thats why were seeing the emergence of smart speakers like the Google Home, Apple HomePod, and Amazon Echo. Microsoft is even rolling out its own smart speaker it developed with Harman Kardon that will use its Cortana language recognition software.
Amazons Alexa was leading the pack as of late last year. As of 2017, there were more than 7,000 Alexa skills, which Geek Wires explains as third-party integrations that extend the capabilities of its voice platform. Alexa developers are in this game to dominate voice. And as Alexa continues to learn new skills and integrate with additional products, she will be a force to reckon with in the tech world.
The Echo is more than a glorified wireless speaker that displays the weather. Amazon is developing a fully-integrated communications hub for your home. If Amazon gives Alexa direct access to an Amazon-branded bank account, it will become an even more powerful platform that Google and Microsoft wont be able to catch.
Amazon shares are already dominating the competition this year. The stock completely ignored the markets February pullback, correcting just a few points before ripping back to new all-time highs. Amazon is now up a mind-melting 30% year-to-date, compared to gains of about 10% for Microsoft and 4% for Google.
Youre approaching a clean double on our Amazon position. But this market leader isnt ready to cool off just yet. If Amazon is determined to take over the world and bleed it dry, we want a piece of the action!
forThe Daily Reckoning