Retail banks worldwide will increase their IT spending by 3.4 percent this year — to a total of $118.6 billion. Industry analysts at Ovum predict that spending in Asia will rise 5.1 percent, followed by North America at 3.3 percent, and Europe at 1.8 percent.

In a new business trends report, Ovum said that mobile banking would be a "clear IT investment priority in 2013." The company suggested that total spending for online channels — including online and mobile browser-based services — will grow by 6.2 percent in 2013.

Credit risk management and data privacy will be key regulatory compliance drivers of IT spending in 2013, according to the Ovum report. It predicts that global MIS investment will reach $6.4 billion this year. In North America banks will spend $2.3 billion, representing 5.1 percent of their overall IT spend.

The report also said that within North America, a move toward increased IT spending signaled a reduction in cost-cutting measures and a focus on digital channels and marketing that will help banks improve both customer satisfaction and revenue growth. 

"Whilst regulatory compliance has certainly fuelled a significant amount of the investment predicted in the forecast, it is by no means the sole driver," said Jaroslaw Knapik, senior analyst for financial services technology at Ovum. "The level of investment in digital channels gives a clear indication that banks are fully cognizant of the growing expectations of their customers, as well as the opportunities they present."

Read more about trends and statistics.

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