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Facebook creates unit for financial services

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Social media giant Facebook said it has created a new unit devoted to financial services to harmonize payment systems on its platform.

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The new group, called Facebook Financial, will be headed by e-commerce veteran David Marcus, who was a president at PayPal before joining the leading social network six years ago.

Marcus is one of the creators of Facebook’s digital money network Libra, and heads the team building a Novi digital wallet tailored for the currency.

The Novi wallet — set to launch when Libra coins debut — promises to give Facebook opportunities to build financial services into its offerings, offer to expand its own commerce and let more small businesses buy ads on the social network.

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Facebook Financial will handle management and strategy for all payments and money services across the Silicon Valley company’s platform.

Noting security concerns posed by Facebook’s yet-to-be-launched digital currency Libra, the Federal Reserve last week revealed plans for its own instant payments system.

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Facebook‘s announcement last year of plans to design the Libra cryptocurrency and payments system raised immediate red flags for global finance officials who expressed a barrage of withering criticism about the security and reliability of a private network.

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