Your publisher and editor are honoured this issue to be carrying contributions from two of the leading lights of the reference data community.
In what will become a regular feature, Tony Kirby, founder of the Reference Data User Group (RDUG) brings us completely up to date with the workings of the various standards working groups. We’re thrilled to be able to bring you the inside line on the issues and challenges facing the industry’s standards protagonists. Reading between the lines, the message is clear: more participation, please. We hope that Kirby’s updates will encourage you to get more involved in the coming months.
We’re also thrilled to be carrying a look at outsourced reference data management by Tim Lind of TowerGroup. Lind has become one of our industry’s foremost commentators. He’s renowned for his appearances at trade events and conferences, where his irreverent style adds spark to the entire subject. His piece in this month’s issue of Reference Data Review couldn’t be more timely. It asks whether the concept of a central reference data utility really has legs. For Reference Data Review readers the question is particularly relevant. With recent acquisitions by SunGard (of Fame) and Capco (of Iverson Financial), and strategic alliances with platform providers by Accenture (with Asset Control) and IBM (ditto, sort of), the theory appears set to be turned into practice imminently.
Like Lind, we wait with bated breath. Despite the summer lull – and it’s only now turning into one – there’s activity on both the vendor and user sides of the fence. Our piece on Insight Asset Management’s initiative to clean up its data act is representative of projects that seem to be proceeding afoot in all areas of the financial services industry. Meanwhile, the London Stock Exchange and FT Interactive Data are rolling out important new products designed to take advantage of the ongoing opening up of the Swift network, this time in the area of corporate actions.
The two join Telekurs as vendors begin to offer their ISO 15022-based services through Swift, as part of a programme initiated last year. As things heat up in London, and cool off a bit in the marketplace, A-Team will endeavour to squeeze in a break, with a motorcycle trip to Germany, Belgium and maybe France. It’s hard to believe that in a month’s time, summer will be over and we’ll all be getting our heads down for the autumn/fall season, preparing for Sibos in Atlanta and dreading the onset of cooler temperatures. This year’s summer lull looks like being a short one. But it’s a problem we like to have.