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API.expert Banking API Analysis: Open Banking, Open Data

This Week’s Banking API Highlights

  • Tide in the Open Banking API – UK – Production category takes the overall title again this week with a CASC score of 9.83, down from 9.84 last week.
  • HSBC in the Open Banking API – UK – Open Data category takes the overall title again with a median latency of 95 ms, the same as last week.
  • Barclays (Sandbox Auth) in the Open Banking API – UK – Sandbox category takes the overall bottom spot again this week with a CASC score of 5.17, up from 4.74 last week.
  • We look into why being fast doesn’t always mean that you have a high-performance banking API.

Something of interest

The great thing about the Open Banking API – UK – Open Data category is that the banks have implemented equivalent endpoints. They are thus directly comparable and there is nowhere to hide in this category.

API.expert Open Banking API Open Data 1

HSBC has the fastest latency in the open banking API category. Its median latency is nearly ten faster than Lloyds Bank, which exposes the same six endpoints.

As we always say, medians can be misleading. HSBC is doing a lot of caching.

And that’s fine. The list of HSBC ATM locations is not going to change much on a minute-by-minute basis (given the rate of bank branch closure, it might change on a week by week basis).

But what’s not fine is, is being so inconsistent.

API.expert Open Banking API Open Data 2

The modal latency is between 50 and 100 ms, but it’s those outliers on the right between 950 and 6300 ms that are determining the mean and the standard deviation.

And a high standard deviation means a low CASC score.

API.expert Open Banking API Open Data 3

We can contrast HSBC Get ATMs with Lloyds Get ATMs.

HSBC is spikey because although the median is less than a 100 ms, there is a high percentage outliers at 500 ms and beyond.

Lloyds, on the other hand, has fewer outliers because it is always slow. It is almost slower than HSBC even HSBC is pulling the data from the backend.

This is why you need to be actively monitoring from your banking APIs and, where possible as with these Open Banking API endpoints, comparing your APIs with those  of your competitors and peers.

Both HSBC and Lloyds have something to learn here.

For HSBC, it’s that caching doesn’t always provide your users with the reliable consistent service they need. Could they pull from the backend less often?

For Lloyds, it’s not that you can be slow and consistency, but are there ways that you optimize your endpoint to provide a better service. Three seconds is an awfully long time to wait for a list of ATMs.

API.expert Open Banking API Open Data 4

Banking API Analysis: Overall Performance

Week Ending 3 May 2021

Category

Organization

CASC score

 

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

Gemini

9.22

Fintech

Square (Sandbox)

9.48

Open Banking: PSD2

 

Railsbank

9.70

Open Banking UK: API Sandbox

 

Royal Bank of Scotland (Sandbox)

9.71

Open Banking UK: Production

 

Tide

9.83

Open Banking UK: Open Data

 

Adam Bank

9.59

Tide in the Open Banking API – UK – Production category takes the overall title again this week with a CASC score of 9.83, down from 9.84 last week. A CASC score of over 9.00 is very good and one of 9.50 or more exceptional. Four out of the six categories are headed by organization with a CASC score of 9.50 or more this week, the same as last week. Sustaining a banking API CASC score of >9.25 over a period of several weeks is a good showing and congratulations to those organizations that achieved it. Five out of six categories are headed by a banking API with CASC score of 9.48 or more, which is a generally acceptable level of performance.

Banking API Analysis: Latency

Week Ending 3 May 2021

Category

Organization

Median Latency

 

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

Coinbase

139 ms

Fintech

Stripe

319 ms

Open Banking: PSD2

 

Railsbank

102 ms

Open Banking UK: API Sandbox

 

Royal Bank of Scotland (Sandbox)

148 ms

Open Banking UK: Production

 

Creation Cards

150 ms

Open Banking UK: Open Data

 

HSBC

95 ms

HSBC in the Open Banking API – UK – Open Data category takes the overall title again with a median latency of 95 ms, the same as last week. An important caveat: medians can be misleading! A banking 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. S o just being fast isn’t everything. You have to be reliable too if you want to have good banking APIs and get a high CASC score!

Banking API Analysis: Worst Overall Quality

Week Ending 3 May 2021

Category

Organization

CASC score

 

Cryptocurrency Exchanges

 

CryptoCompare

6.99

Fintech

Open Bank Project (Sandbox)

7.57

Open Banking: PSD2

 

BBVA

7.86

Open Banking UK: API Sandbox

 

Barclays (Sandbox Auth)

5.17

Open Banking UK: Production

 

Yorkshire Building Society

6.61

Open Banking UK: Open Data

 

HSBC

6.40

Barclays (Sandbox Auth) in the Open Banking – UK – Sandbox category takes the overall bottom spot again this week with a CASC score of 5.17, up from 4.74 last week.

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