Saturday 23rd June 2018
Mobile operator EE has said it will activate the UK’s first live 5G trial network in London’s Tech City in October –The UK government says organisations that are aiming to establish themselves or expand as Public Service Mutuals can now apply for a share of £1 million in funding -- India’s central bank raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time since 2014 to curb rising price pressures and calm financial markets as policy tightening in the US rattles emerging markets – A new report from South Africa's Reserve Bank (SARB) contains exception results for a trial of its blockchain-based system for interbank clearance and settlement. According to a release yesterday SARB says it has completed a 14-week "realistic" proof-of-concept that managed to settle the country's typical 70,000 daily payment transactions within two hours, taking an average of 1–2 seconds for each transaction while preserving full anonymity. Absa, Capitec, Discovery Bank, FirstRand, Investec, Nedbank and Standard Bank are among a slew of banks that participated in the exercise. Even so, despite the success claims, SARB says its proof-of-concept doesn't mean it plans to replace the existing real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system with a live blockchain implementation, yet – According to Mickhail Shlemov, VTB’s Capital’s head of research today, “With the demerger of Bank of Georgia Group’s investment business to Georgia Capital PLC, we have revised our forecasts for Bank of Georgia Group so that they now include only the banking business. We expect the bank to benefit from this demerger amid an acceleration in corporate loan growth (although retail lending is likely to decelerate), with the total loan book expanding at a CAGR of 11% in 2017-21F. However, NIM performance headwinds are likely to stay intact. Management has reiterated its strategic targets, and we also expect the bank to show ROE of more than 20% in the next three years, with a 40% dividend payout ratio. As a result, our new 12-month Target Price is GBp 2,300/share. This implies an ETR of only 14% (the stock is up 10% since demerger day).” On May 29th, Bank of Georgia Group (BOGG) announced the completion of the demerger of the Group’s investment business to Georgia Capital PLC. As a part of the process, the bank has issued 9.8mn shares (up to 19.9% of the total share count) to Georgia Capital. Yet the capital will also be diminished by a special dividend payment of some GEL 120mn (GEL 3.10/share), similar to the proposed BGEO Group payment – Reuters reports that European parliament member Danuta Huebner says that London’s call for EU access after Brexit under mutual recognition will not work. Equivalence would let the EU set the rules – Scott Eaton, the former chief operating chief for Europe at MarketAxess has been appointed CEO of Algomi following the departure of co-founder Stu Taylor earlier this year. Eaton has taken over the role with immediate effect and will focus on developing Algomi’s fixed income services, including data aggregation and the Algomi ALFA market surveillance tool – The FCPA Blog notes today that banking giant Credit Suisse Group has agreed to pay a $47m penalty to the US Justice Department to end an FCPA investigation into hiring practices in Asia -- The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) voted Tuesday to approve a proposal to modify the Volcker rule, the last of the five agencies responsible for the rule to do so. The proposal is now open to a 60-day public comment period. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin called the move "an important first step" and noted Treasury's support for "better tailoring the application of the rule, preserving liquidity during periods of stress, decreasing unintended compliance burdens and encouraging capital formation." --

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Steve Young

Steve Young

Managing Partner, Citisoft PLC

Steve brings with him over 30 years of experience in the investment management industry. He provides a blend of business understanding, extensive knowledge of the technology and software landscape and in depth understanding of the services sector. Prior to joining Citisoft Steve was one of the team that created Rhyme Systems following a management buy-out from Misys PLC, successfully restructuring the business into a leading software and services company. Prior to Rhyme, Steve held senior positions at Thomson Reuters, Extel Financial and Datastream.

Disruption is inevitable, whether it comes from within or outside the industry.

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Thursday, 07 June 2018 11:43

AI: where and when?

There are certainly areas of investment management where AI can be very powerful, but at the moment it is hard to see it being used in nearly as many ways as some commentators are suggesting.

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The worst possible outcome for the financial services industry would be if the TSB fiasco were to dissuade other firms from migrating away from their legacy systems.

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Thursday, 17 May 2018 14:11

The Innovation Capacity Scale

The speed of change in the asset management industry is unsustainably slow and unless firms become more adept at accelerating their evolution, they will suffer badly once disruption occurs.

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Friday, 20 April 2018 09:45

Innovation Labs: do they work?

If an asset manager truly desires to be a technology-led company then there needs to be root and branch change.

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For many software vendors, service provision is an attractive business model - but there is more to this transition than meets the eye.

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As a result of the prevailing risk averse culture, it is very difficult for investment management firms to initiate and manage change.

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Friday, 23 February 2018 15:47

Facing the project truth

Many large technology projects in the asset management industry are, at best, a limited success.

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  • Thursday, 07 June 2018 11:43 AI: where and when?
    There are certainly areas of investment management where AI can be very powerful, but at the moment it is hard to see it being used…

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