About a-team Marketing Services
The leading knowledge platform for the financial technology industry
The leading knowledge platform for the financial technology industry

A-Team Insight Blogs

Swift Enhances SwiftRef Reference Data Utility and Plans Managed Services

Subscribe to our newsletter

Swift is building on last year’s introduction of SwiftRef, its payments reference data utility, with plans to extend web and cloud data services and develop managed services around the data it collects, cleanses, consolidates and publishes. SwiftRef went live in January 2012 and is delivering 194 data files every day to about 1,000 subscribers worldwide.

The SwiftRef business unit and utility were developed after Swift set out a strategy running from 2010 to 2015 that separated its products and messaging services with a view to offering Swift community members and those outside the community additional value propositions. The utility is designed to support payments and treasury transactions, with 80% of its users being financial institutions and 20% corporates. It was also designed to include legal entity identifiers (LEIs) that form part of the global LEI system mandated by the G20.

Patrik Neutjens, head of reference data at Swift, says the utility is gathering, cross-referencing to other entity identifiers and publishing the first pre-LEIs from the first pre-Local Operating Unit, CFTC Interim Compliant Identifiers, or CICIs, from the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission. It will then add LEIs issued by other LOUs as they emerge within the global system.

While SwiftRef can gather and cross-reference LEIs from many sources, Neutjens notes that it is not yet clear how they will be consolidated for consumption. He explains: “It could be that LEIs will be consolidated by one party for the benefit of all, or we may have to consolidate them. The Central Operating Unit of the global LEI system could consolidate LEIs or mandate other organisations to do the task so that consumers can have a consolidated list of LEIs.” Having lost out on an early proposal in the global LEI system development to work with DTCC to set up a single LEI utility for the global LEI system, Neutjens suggests SwiftRef could be one such consolidator.

Neutjens says interest in SwiftRef is usually triggered by regulation, with the Single Euro Payments Area being a key driver, but he also notes that the need to meet regulatory requirements is leading many banks to re-engineer back-office data infrastructure with a view to developing an holistic environment that can support multiple regulations and generate additional revenue streams. “The pressure on the industry to have accurate reference data has grown over the past couple of years as a result of compliance and risk management requirements and costs related to payments. We are now in a phase where accuracy and completeness of data are very important and this is where we can differentiate against competition,” he says.

SwiftRef responded to demand for increased frequency of reference data distribution with a move to daily file updates in April 2013. It is also considering data consumption options through cloud and web service pilot projects that support real-time application programme interface (API) calls to data and proactive alerts for user specified data. While SwiftRef has some web services, such as API calls to validate or get an identity code, it wants to extend web services over the next six to eight months to deliver services including streaming data. Neutjens explains: “This means users with limited needs for reference data could pay only for the data they need and high level users could consume streaming data automatically and improve straight through processing.”

The next step is provision of managed services, including maintaining and managing reference data on behalf of customers. Neutjens says: “We are discussing with large banks how we could build out managed services. The more accurate and trusted our reference data, the more we can do around it, providing cost savings for the industry.” As SwiftRef finesses its first reference data utility, it is also looking at other product possibilities with a view to capitalising on its clients’ reference data requirements.

Subscribe to our newsletter

Related content

WEBINAR

Upcoming Webinar: Data standards and global identifiers update

Date: 21 June 2022 Time: 10:00am ET / 3:00pm London / 4:00pm CET Duration: 50 minutes Data standards and global identifiers are the international language of capital markets – but how widely have they been adopted, how useful are they in practice, and can they stand the test of sustaining stable markets? This webinar will...

BLOG

ESMA Proposes Amendments to MiFIR Transparency Requirements

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has proposed targeted amendments to some of its Regulatory Technical Standards, essentially RTS 1 and RTS 2, which specify Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR) transparency requirements for equity and non-equity. The amendments aim to clarify, improve and simplify the transparency regime for equity and non-equity instruments. The...

EVENT

Virtual Briefing: ESG Data Management – A Strategic Imperative (Redirected)

This briefing will explore challenges around assembling and evaluating ESG data for reporting and the impact of regulatory measures and industry collaboration on transparency and standardisation efforts. Expert speakers will address how the evolving market infrastructure is developing and the role of new technologies and alternative data in improving insight and filling data gaps.

GUIDE

Regulatory Data Handbook 2021/2022 – Ninth Edition

Welcome to the ninth edition of A-Team Group’s Regulatory Data Handbook, a publication dedicated to helping you gain a full understanding of regulations related to your organisation from the details of requirements to best practice implementation. This edition of the handbook includes a focus on regulations being rolled out to bring order and standardisation to...