I think it is correct to say that the technological changes of the last decade have not bought changes to the pricing transparency and structuring of retail banking products.
The high street banks act as a marketing arm for products that are in some cases very efficient and have a readily available fair value.
Consumers may no longer fall for "teaser rates" when they can easily calculate fair value for any financial product.
But what will it take for consumers to take up products like Zopa in a mainstream way?
Is it possible that all retail financial products could be transacted in central marketplaces?
Maybe its too big a move for consumers to change the way they conduct their banking or perhaps its too complicated for the average consumer to understand the workings of mass collaborative marketplaces.
People don't like moving their money around amongst different providers of financial products, firstly because of the hassle factor and secondly because of a worry for the security of their funds.
People are questionning bank charges more and more, and the internet is enabling people with the knowledge to understand any fair value calculation, which ultimately means that banks will have to be far more open on their profit margins on each product,
from a loan to a credit card to a foreign currency transfer.
Is it possible for marketplaces to evolve where complete risk transfer is facilitated?
I see alot of evidence to support this happening in many non-banking sectors, but I'm yet to see anything convincing in the banking sector itself!