National Consumers League

Personal Finance

NCL Personal Finance Issues

Join us for a live online expert panel discussion about consumers and online personal financial management tools

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Image of computer keyboard with piggy bank keyNCL live online event!
Personal financial management tools: opportunities and challenges for consumers


Event details

  • When: Thursday, September 27, 2012, 2:30pm Eastern
  • Where: The event will be broadcast live on NCL's YouTube channel and at
  • Who: Confirmed panelists include: John Breyault, NCL (moderator); Sophie Raseman, U.S. Treasury Department; Ken Sun,; Phil Christian, Chase; Mark Schwanhausser, Javelin Strategy & Research; Linda Sherry, Consumer Action; and Ron Shevlin, Aite Group
  • Who should attend: Personal finance reporters, bloggers, policymakers, consumer advocates, and consumers interested in personal finance issues
  • To RSVP for this free event, click here

Join NCL’s chat with the pros and learn more about the benefits and concerns with online personal financial management tools (PFMs).

Far too many consumers face aggressive financial fees, inadequate savings, and piles of debt. One way that consumers are addressing this is by adopting online tools to help them manage their personal finances. It is estimated that 26 million consumers will be using PFMs by 2015.

What challenges and opportunities do those tools create?

Questions that will be explored by an expert panel of analysts, advocates, regulators and PFM industry representatives include:

  • Given the large amounts of sensitive financial data that consumers are sharing via PFMs, what are the benefits they are getting from these tools?
  • Are PFMs helping consumers pay less in fees, save more money and get out of debt faster?
  • How are consumers' financial management habits being affected by the new breed of mobile and bank-affiliated PFMs?
  • Does the government have a role in ensuring consumers can use PFMs safely and effectively?

Panelists will take questions from our online audience on YouTube and via the Twitter.

Follow the event via the Twitter hashtag: #etool$

This event was made possible thanks to an unrestricted educational grant from Chase Blueprint®.

PFM Panelist Bios

Phil Christian - General Manager, Chase Freedom

Phil Christian is general manager, Chase Freedom. Previously, he served as general manager of the Affluent/High-Net Worth business. Phil’s leadership contributed significantly to the growth of the Affluent Slate, Freedom and Legacy Rewards cards and the successful launches of Blueprint and Slate. He was also actively involved in a cross-functional effort to revamp the Chase Cardmember Agreement, which received a Clearmark Award for its clear, simple and customer-friendly language. Phil has served in a number of leadership roles for Chase Card Services, including senior director of Chase Strategic Business Unit and senior director of Product, Sales and Growth Strategy. Phil’s professional experience spans more than 25 years with financial institutions such as Wachovia, HSBC Americas and American Express in addition to his most recent experience with Chase. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics from Lafayette College and an MBA from the University of Rochester’s Simon School.

Sophie Raseman - Director of Smart Disclosure, Office of Consumer Policy, U.S. Department of the Treasury

In her role at the Treasury Department, Sophie Raseman leads work on encouraging data-driven innovations that empower financial consumers. She also serves as co-chair of the Task Force on Smart Disclosure, established by the White House to study and promote smart disclosure across the federal government. Smart disclosure refers to the disclosure of information by government and business in machine-readable data formats, so that innovators can create new kinds of services that empower consumers, such as mobile personal finance apps. Treasury recently launched the Finance Data Directory, which makes finance-related data sets from multiple federal agencies available to the public in one convenient location. Prior to Treasury, Sophie worked as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company. She has a JD from the Yale Law School and graduated from Yale College.

Mark Schwanhausser – Director, Multichannel Financial Services, Javelin Strategy & Research

As Javelin’s Senior Multichannel Financial Services Analyst, Mark helps banks and credit unions be more successful by understanding how and why consumers manage, monitor and move their money via on online and mobile banking. He offers keen insights into consumers, competitors and vendors that enable handling of personal finances, for improved profitability. Mark has forecast the outlook for online banking and bill pay, laid out a roadmap for how financial institutions should roll out personal finance management tools, rated top PFM vendors, detailed how the industry should address seven critical flaws of financial alerts, evaluated the leading mobile-banking vendors, rated online account opening vendors and identified how to turn mobile banking into the customer’s financial “remote control.” He also covers such topics as the behavior of Generation Y banking consumers, how the industry should mix social media and banking, how banks and billers can convert more customers to electronic statements, and innovations that could reshape the industry. Before joining Javelin in April 2008, Mark worked nearly 26 years for the San Jose Mercury News, most of it as a personal finance reporter writing about money and emerging trends in financial services and payments technology. Mark has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri at Columbia and attended Antioch College. He lives in Pleasanton with his wife and four children

Linda Sherry – Director of National Priorities, Consumer Action

Linda Sherry, Consumer Action’s director of national priorities and one of the organization’s chief spokespersons, joined the San Francisco-based national consumer education and advocacy group in 1994 from a background as a weekly newspaper reporter. She is an expert on credit card pricing and practices. She is regularly called upon for interviews and background information by the national and local media (TV, radio and print), Congress and federal regulators to provide information about consumers and credit cards. Her most recent projects for Consumer Action include publications on personal finance, bankruptcy, banking, credit repair, insurance fraud, Internet privacy, cell phones and investing vs. savings. Sherry coordinates Consumer Action’s popular annual pricing surveys of rates for bank and retail credit cards, prepaid phone cards and long distance telephone service. She is the editor of Consumer Action’s newsletter, Consumer Action News.

Ron Shevlin – Senior Analyst, Aite Group

Ron Shevlin specializes in retail banking issues including sales and marketing technologies, customer and marketing analytics, loyalty management, P2P lending, personal financial management, social computing, online banking, customer experience and consumer behavior. Mr. Shevlin is a recognized thought leader for his pioneering research on right-channeling consumer interactions, the impact of customer advocacy on future purchase intention, and developing sense-and-respond marketing capabilities to improve sales and marketing efforts. He has been widely quoted in press, in publications such as U.S. Banker and Credit Union Management, and has been a keynote speaker at numerous industry/client events including BAI Retail Delivery, CUES CEO Network, DMA Financial Services, NICSA Technology Forum and Forrester Finance Forum. Prior to joining Aite Group, Mr. Shevlin was a vice president at Epsilon, where he led the database marketing firm's financial services consulting practice. He helped banks, brokerages, and credit card issuers assess their database marketing and analytics competencies, develop marketing strategies and plans, build marketing performance scorecards and measure customer engagement to improve their marketing effectiveness and efficiency. Prior to his time with Epsilon, Mr. Shevlin was a vice president and principal analyst at Forrester Research, heading up Forrester's research efforts on customer loyalty, profitability and consumer channel use in the financial services industry. As part of his consulting work, he conducted consumer research studies, developed predictive buying and channel usage models, designed effective online marketing campaigns and Web sites, and helped financial services firms craft profitable online channel strategies. Mr. Shevlin received an M.B.A. in Finance and Statistics from the University of Texas at Austin, and a B.A. in Economics from SUNY Binghamton. He is also the author of Everything They've Told You About Marketing Is Wrong, published in March 2008.

Ken Sun - Group Product Manager,

Ken Sun currently leads the product management team at where the team is dedicated to helping people easily see their finances in one place. He's known for leading teams that turn great ideas into great consumer products.  He's worked at eBay, Lab126/Amazon, Samsung and a string of startups that never IPO'ed. In his spare time he can be found cooking, eating, photographing and improving his Canadian accent.

John Breyault – Vice President of Public Policy, Telecommunications and Fraud, National Consumers League (moderator)

John joined the National Consumers League in September 2008. John’s focus at NCL is on advocating for stronger consumer protections before Congress and federal agencies on issues related to telecommunications, fraud, technology, and other consumer concerns. In addition, John manages NCL’s Fraud Center and coordinates the Alliance Against Fraud coalition.   Prior to coming to NCL, John spent five years as director of research at Amplify Public Affairs, where he helped launch the firm’s Web 2.0-based public affairs practice and focused on producing actionable public policy research. Earlier in his career, John worked at Sprint in its International Carrier Services Division and at the American Center for Polish Culture in Washington, DC. John has served on numerous public and private advisory boards including the FCC’s Consumer Advisory Committee, the CFTC’s Technology Advisory Committee and the Board of the Arlington-Alexandria Coalition for the Homeless. He is a graduate of George Mason University, where he received a B.A. in International Relations.

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