Jan 21, 2015 02:58 PM

China Boots Up an Internet Banking Industry

(Beijing) -- Premier Li Keqiang recently launched a new era for banking in China by ceremonially pressing the "confirm" button for a 35,000 yuan loan issued to a Shenzhen truck driver.

Li's gesture on January 4 on behalf of Shenzhen Qianhai WeBank was the inaugural transaction for the country's first no-bricks, no-mortar, 24-hour, Internet-only bank.

The ceremony underscored a government decision to let up-and-coming Internet banks focus on lending to blue collar workers and small business owners. WeBank also hopes to break new ground by using technological gizmos such as online face recognition to confirm the identities of loan applicants.

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