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Google plans to offer checking accounts next year

Google is planning to offer checking accounts within its Google Pay app, The Wall Street Journal reports. Its “Cache” project, which could launch as soon as next year, will be offered in partnership with Citigroup and a small Stanford University credit union. Google says that the accounts will be branded up front as coming from these banks, which will handle the financial backend and regulatory compliance.

Google executive Caesar Sengupta told the WSJ that the initiative is designed to “help more people do more stuff in a digital way online,” and he noted that the service could be used to offer loyalty card programs. The publication also notes that checking accounts contain a huge amount of valuable data about consumer spending as well as information about how much people earn. Google, however, has been quick to claim that it won’t sell checking account financial data to advertisers, and it added that it doesn’t currently use Google Pay data for advertising purposes.