We have now split out Open banking and other financial APIs we rate into separate weekly and monthly reports. This allows us to give you a more focused view of the APIs you care about.

In particular, we’ve seen increased adoption of and interest in APIs in the financial sector as the uptake of Open Banking accelerates. At APImetrics over the last few weeks, we’ve been able to add many UK Open Banking APIs to the ones we monitor and the performance of which can be seen at our API.expert site.

Now, onto what the past week tells us about the state of the world of Open Banking and financial APIs as we go into November 2020.

API Performance Headlines: CASC

We look at hundreds of API endpoints and pull all the metrics together to give you a general feeling for the service quality for an organization’s APIs in a particular category.

Top Open Banking & Finance API Ratings

Week Ending 3 November 2020

Category

Organization

CASC score

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

HitBTC

9.53

Fintech

Stripe

9.30

Open Banking: PSD2

ABN AMRO Bank (Sandbox)

9.51

Open Banking UK: Sandbox

Royal Bank of Scotland (Sandbox)

9.57

Open Banking UK: Production

Danske Bank

9.34

Open Banking UK: Open Data

Bank of Ireland

9.71

Bank of Ireland in Open Banking – UK – Open Data takes the overall title this week with a CASC score of 9.71.

A CASC score of over 9.00 is very good and one of 9.50 or more exceptional. Four of the six categories are headed by organization with a CASC score of 9.50 or more this week. Sustaining a CASC score of >9.25 over a period of several weeks is a good showing and congratulations to those organizations that achieved it.

All categories are headed by an API with CASC score of 9.30 or more, which is an acceptable level of performance.

Top Open Banking & Finance API Ratings: Latency

Week Ending 3 November 2020

Category

Organization

Median Latency

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

FTX

219 ms

Fintech

Stripe

304 ms

Open Banking: PSD2

Railsbank

111 ms

Open Banking UK: Sandbox

Royal Bank of Scotland (Sandbox)

137 ms

Open Banking UK: Production

Tide (Auth)

148 ms

Open Banking UK: Open Data

HSBC

87 ms

HSBC in Open Banking – UK – Open Data takes the overall title again with a median latency of 87 ms, down from 94 ms last week.

An important caveat: medians can be misleading! An API might have a fast median latency but produce many slow outliers. These won’t affect the median, but they mean that users can experience many calls that were unacceptably slow. So just being fast isn’t everything. You have to be reliable too if you want to have good APIs and get a high CASC score!

FTX, our old favorite, is back at the top of the Cryptocurrency Exchanges category, but is only 9th in that category in terms of CASC score with a CASC score of 8.74.

Worst quality across all categories

Week Ending 3 November 2020

Category

Organization

CASC score

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

Bancor Network

7.76

Fintech

Intuit Quickbooks (Sandbox)

7.95

Open Banking: PSD2

Railsbank

7.41

Open Banking UK: Sandbox

Danske Bank (Sandbox)

4.23

Open Banking UK: Production

Creation Cards (Auth)

6.10

Open Banking UK: Open Data

HSBC

7.59

Danske Bank (Sandbox) in the Open Banking – UK – Sandbox category takes the overall wooden spoon with a CASC score of 6.45.

Something of interest

Open Banking sandboxes are a controversial topic. Any good sandbox must replicate the production environment as closely as possible. But replicating the production environment is no easy task and despite being obligated to provide a sandbox by the regulator banks have been known to cheat and use a bank in a box (you can get these from a number of providers) that doesn’t behave anything like the live bank.

OPEN BANKING

But we do see big variations in the quality of the sandboxes. Three manage to a CASC score of over 9.00, two are in the Amber Zone and one – Danske Bank (Sandbox) is firmly in the Red Zone and took the Wooden Spoon this week.

We don’t have to look far as to why it was struggling. It is reasonably fast, but it had a lot of failures and a lot of outliers. But we are seeing persistent 500s Internal Server Error (with the helpful error message “Internal Server Error” (and the occasional 401) on one of the endpoints.

The lesson here, of course, is to monitor your sandbox and just any other part of your critical infrastructure because the sandbox is part of your critical infrastructure. If you are not monitoring, you are not managing. Treat your sandbox just like your production environment, both in the way it works and the way it is monitored.

See you again in a week as dive deeper in November. And don’t forget to look out for October financial API report coming soon and the weekly and monthly non-financial ones.

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