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Industry roundup: 11 November

Goldman Sachs and AccessFintech launch derivatives cash payments affirmation service

AccessFintech has announced the launch of a derivatives cash payments affirmation service, working with Goldman Sachs. Goldman Sachs and AccessFintech developed the cross-industry service working with a major Tier 1 buy-side client to embed a process that allows for the real-time supervision and scrutiny of expected cash payments associated with derivatives trading.

Previously, derivative settlement processing has been operationally inefficient for buy-side clients and their brokers, with disputes often captured without sufficient time to resolve. Now, the ability to have a zero-touch settlement payment process with a digital workflow for collaborative dispute resolution, enables significant benefits.

Working with AccessFintech has enabled a zero-touch process through real-time settlement data sharing, systemic matching and a shared digital workflow. Buy-side and brokers both benefit from zero-touch processes, however, where breaks are identified, real-time dispute workflow and collaboration tools streamline the resolution process. This transformation enables joint focus on value-add activities; reducing repetitive manual processes and the need for outreach via email or phone to gather the latest status.

The introduction of this service focuses initially on interest rate coupons and cross-currency swaps, credit and equity total return swaps with future expansion to other over the counter (OTC) derivatives, including CFD and exchange traded equity derivatives. A multi-bank Cash Payments Working Group, with Goldman Sachs’ support, recently launched to define the standards to deploy this across the industry.

 

Refinitiv launches AI-powered due diligence to assess business supply chains

Refinitiv has launched an AI-powered due diligence report to help businesses stay on top of the risks associated with increasingly complex supply chains. The data-driven ‘Snapshot’ report offers a review of suppliers and business interests in a way that is designed to help companies better evaluate the perceived risks presented.

World events such as the Covid-19 pandemic together with regulatory developments including the proposed corporate due diligence legislation from the European Commission, have resulted in an unprecedented level of scrutiny on business supply chains. Despite these pressures, research from Refinitiv shows that as much as 43% of third-party relationships are not subject to any form of due diligence checks. With companies having an average of 10,000 third-party relationships, many organisations are not fully managing supply chain risk.

The Snapshot report addresses the growing need for affordable, preliminary assessments of third parties by delivering a concise, indicative view of potential risks that can be used to prioritise business relationships. Snapshot is a pre-due diligence report that acts as a first step in the due diligence process. Based on the results of Snapshot, organisations can take a risk-based approach to prioritise and determine their next steps.

Snapshot uses AI and natural language processing (NLP) to create a consolidated view of public domain information, including company details, risk intelligence from Refinitiv’s World-Check, as well as adverse media and country risk information.

 

Surecomp and Profile partner on trade and treasury solutions

Surecomp, a provider of global trade finance solutions for banks and corporates, has announced that it is partnering with Profile Software, a financial solutions vendor, to provide a response to the rising demand for trade finance digitisation solutions and services in Greece and south eastern Europe.

The current pandemic and the quest for an enhanced digital infrastructure are driving banks to improve trade finance processing solutions for optimised customer service, and to reduce costs whilst minimising the risk in these complex trade processes. In response to a higher volume of finance requests, they must facilitate trade more efficiently and with greater connectivity to the broader trade finance ecosystem.

Athens-based Profile has thirty years’ experience working with clients around the world including many of Greece’s flagship financial institutions, supporting them through digital transformation projects in transaction banking, investment management, treasury and risk management. Surecomp will also represent Profile’s solutions for banking, risk management and investment management further enriching the offering to its own customers. The solutions - which can be deployed in the cloud or on premise - have been designed to enhance operational efficiency while adhering to regulatory frameworks and industry standards.

 

62% of firms expect to allow long term remote work

Twice as many financial firms will allow long-term remote work compared to just three months ago, according to a survey from FIS. The company surveyed 250 executives in June and again in September. They found companies' attitudes shifted markedly over the course of the pandemic. 

The researched delivered the following findings: 

  • Firms who expected to allow long-term remote work jumped from 35% in June to 62% in September.
  • 67% say they won't require employees to return as soon as it is safe to do so.
  • 68% of the largest companies - those with US$20bn or more in revenue - are planning to reduce their physical footprint.
  • Companies planning to expand geographically fell from 45% to 34% in September.
  • The most common reasons for allowing remote work: cost savings (47%), attracting employees (39%), productivity gains (37%).

Companies reported pressures on capital expenditure and low interest rates as the biggest threats to growth for the rest of the year. This means less money for investments, so firms are prioritising areas for development: 

  • 47% of buy-side respondents prioritising core operations upgrades/resilience measures. 
  • 52% of sell-side respondents prioritising cyber-security tools.
  • Artificial intelligence investments focus on those that will deliver quick return - client reporting (37%) and client onboarding (34%) - most popular.

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