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Fidessa Develops FIX-Based Affirmation Service for the Buy Side

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Fidessa is pushing further into the post-trade space with the addition of an affirmation management service (AMS) for the buy side. The service is due to be available in the fourth quarter of 2014 and follows the introduction of Fidessa’s FIX-based Post-trade Hub for the confirmation of trades between buy-side and sell-side firms in August 2013.

The AMS allows buy-side firms to interact directly over FIX with the global broker community, automating workflow for direct trade affirmation and delivering a faster, cheaper and more accurate alternative to manual processes and technologies using proprietary protocols.

David Pearson, strategic business architect at Fidessa and co-chair of the FIX Trading Community Post-trade Working Group, explains: “Asset managers want to use industry protocols in the post-trade space, but there is a lack of workflow technology for direct trade matching. There are firms with existing technologies and proprietary models, and firms with manual processes that want to use industry standards to improve efficiency and reduce costs. Then there is the issue of T+2 beginning in some European countries in October. This is shining a light on current practices, leading many firms to reassess how they manage post-trade operations.”

The Fidessa AMS service builds on the long-term acceptance of FIX in the front office and its widespread use across the buy side. As a hosted solution, AMS offers asset managers data integration with front-office order management systems using either FIX application programming interfaces or flat files. It then manages the affirmation workflow to the point where trades are enriched and affirmed with a broker, and then moved to the asset manager’s back office, custodian or third-party administrator. As well as extending the use of FIX into the post-trade affirmation process, the AMS workflow can support the persistence of information that is in the front office as it flows to the back office.

Fidessa is in the build stage of the AMS and is working with its sell-side brokers to extend their FIX capabilities to connect to and support the workflow. The service is expected to gain traction among both Fidessa users and users of other front-office systems, and could be a starting point for Fidessa to develop more post-trade services for the buy-side middle office, perhaps covering processes such as commission management and regulatory reporting.

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