The Second Payment Services Directive (known as PSD2), reorganized the requirements for the provision of payment services in the European Union (EU). Through the directive, the EU aimed at promoting innovations in payment transactions, improving payment security and strengthening consumer protection.
With the introduction of the PSD2, two new types of services emerged and became regulated for the first time: On the one hand, account information services can access and analyze consumers’ account and payment data and present consumers with intelligible reports. Such services can be used, for example, to combine several bank accounts in one overview or to carry out credit checks. On the other hand, consumers can use payment initiation services to initiate payment orders directly from their bank account. Such services represent alternative payment methods to credit cards and direct debits and can also be used, for example, to switch current accounts, including existing standing orders.
To enable the provision of such services, credit institutions must provide dedicated interfaces for third-party providers so that they can view account data and initiate payments.
This project was commissioned by the Federation of German Consumer Organizations (vzbv) and aims to investigate what the digital financial market looks like one year after the implementation of the last stage of PSD2: What advantages and disadvantages has the directive brought to consumers? Is there a need to improve the directive?
To answer these questions, in a first step, an exemplary inventory of services is created through desk-based research. This serves as the basis for a market analysis, which consists of expert interviews and a more detailed discussion of selected examples of PSD2-relevant services. In addition, a digital workshop with experts is organized to discuss and reflect on how the digital financial market has changed for consumers. Based on the results, recommendations are formulated for further research needs or regulatory improvements.