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Blog

What is this SaaS thing?

We were recently surprised when a customer asked us

‘What is this SaaS thing you keep referring to in meetings, in your online help and on your social media sites’.

So, we have decided to share our view of SaaS and why, in our view, it is great that aqmetrics is a SaaS company.

What is SaaS?

SaaS

Before we jump into the definition of SaaS, let’s deal with some basic jargon first. There is the ‘cloud’. In short, we connect with hosted online services to store and manage data. These hosted online services are our ‘cloud’.

Our applications are stored online in the cloud. Our customer’s data is stored online in the cloud. Our analytics and workflow are managed in the cloud. We list our solutions online and our customers ‘rent’ our software from our cloud location. This renting of aqmetrics software from the cloud is what we refer to as our Software as a Service (SaaS) offering.

Why is being a SaaS company great for aqmetrics customers?

Renting takes one form at aqmetrics – usage based subscription. Business pay a fee for the aqmetrics service based on their service usage. We offer plans with several tiers for ultimate flexibility. We also offer a fixed price for anything that goes above our top tier level. Our customers tell us that they gain considerable economies from our usage based subscriptions.

As our customers rent our software, the upkeep of the technology, maintenance, repairs, and upgrades all falls under aqmetrics remit and saves our customers time and money. Renting software eliminates the need for large technology teams.

Furthermore, because we offer regulatory technology (RegTech) our customers don’t have to employ large teams of lawyers to interpret rules and regulations. That heavy lifting is done by aqmetrics legal counsel. Our legal counsel reviews existing and emerging regulations alongside our technologists. Together the blended aqmetrics team build scalable software for existing, new and emerging regulations. The cost of regulatory change has significantly reduced in our customer’s organisations thanks to aqmetrics unique approach to blending legal and technical analysts to build the best products.

Our customers can access the software they rent from anywhere in the world and log their workflow progress as if using software installed in the office. Before cloud computing, typically only “lite” versions of office resources could be accessed remotely. Now, all heavy lifting happens through aqmetrics infrastructure, delivering an ‘in work’ like experience point-to-point.

Then there is the Business Continuity that is guaranteed through renting software as a service. An IT crisis in the office cannot affect aqmetrics cloud technology. If software services crash on one host, the aqmetrics service continues to run. Only the device impacted by the crash disconnect. This makes failover to another backup software service seamless and easy, whilst invisible to the end users of aqmetrics services.


Blog

Farewell Black Swans

Know Your Exposure. Be Prepared.

Do you know where your firm’s risk is concentrated? In this blog we examine how can you better make your risk culture understood from the top down and reported accurately from the bottom up.

Firstly, at an operational level, do all of your business units have a consistent view of the combined risks concentrated in their area? Do operational teams provide the input in to the Risk Register in a simple to use business application? Does your risk assessment tool allow for expert judgement to be captured for the qualitative risk assessment? Is each business unit a key participant in the risk management workflow?

Secondly, at a supervisory level, is there a holistic view across business units? How does the risk heat map look for the business? When should capacity and resources be assigned to risk control? What should be reported up to board level for escalation? Do you have a configurable tool that matches your firm’s business operating model?

And ultimately, at a board level, is the board aware of the risk concentrations that may impact the firm’s business reputation and core strategy? Are capital expenditure, mitigation, effectiveness and continuity plans acceptable? Does the board have assurance that risk is managed beyond superficial reporting? Is adequate information available to the board to facilitate knowledgeable discussions and highlight the top three ‘big bets’ and ‘key exposures’?

At aqmetrics we’ve a five step best practice approach to risk aggregation:

1. Consistency: At present, you may have one team capturing risk one way, and another team doing it another way. That won’t work. How can you aggregate risk at a firm level if there is no consistency in the risk capture at the business unit level?

You need to capture and assess all risks in a consistent manner. Disparate risk systems lead to data inconsistency that impacts your overall organisations risk assessments.

2. Concentration: Pooling risk assessment and creating a heat map gives you a full picture of where your vulnerabilities lie. There is a trend among risk professionals, regulators and compliance staff alike to assess risk concentration in line with current and emerging regulations.

3. Accountability: The solution involves integrating your company’s mitigation and action plans using a workflow model aligned to your business. Each business unit should be accountable for risk management in a non-superficial way.

Individual risks may not escalate to board level. However, when risks are pooled and organisational impact as a whole is assessed and managed via an auditable workflow, we move from passive risk management to active risk control. Board communications then become streamlined, simplified and above all accurate.

4. Appropriateness: Risk tools should support qualitative analysis in a predictable manner, while also providing quantitative analysis where required. They should be proficient in using statistical analysis to support both capital and strategic expenditure decision making. Qualitative analysis should be clear, understood and transparent, but quantitative should be used with caution and only for specific subset of risks.

5. Assurance: Any solution should have the capability to call, recreate and produce a full audit trail in the event of an internal or regulatory inspection. This is a necessity.

There is no escaping the fact that regulation and compliance touches every part of your firm. Yet regulations can be increasingly complex and overlapping. Consequently, asset managers having a growing need for a systematic approach to aggregate risk within evolving regulations (EU AML Directive V, MiFID II) and emerging regulations (Cybersecurity, GDPR, IT resilience).

The combined business impact of these regulations must be measured and managed in a consistent, transparent manner with accurate and timely reporting at an operational, supervisory and board level.

After-the-fact ‘black-swan’ assessments will no longer be acceptable.


Buzz

WomenInFunds first network event a huge success

#WomenInFundsOn 7th June, as part of FundForum International, AQMetrics launched the #WomenInFunds network. This year over 1,400 investment managers, intermediary investors and innovators attended Fund Forum International of which just 15% (approx 200) were women.

A recent Wall Street Journal article stated that only 9% of fund managers are women. And so, to help support and boost that figure, #WomenInFunds was born. The first event was held in the Waldorf Astoria hotel in Berlin on Tuesday 7th June 2016.

The cocktail reception was a huge success with 60 women from across the funds industry represented. They included global business heads, company founders, chief risk officers, portfolio managers, legal and compliance experts as well as industry consultants.

Geraldine Gibson, our CEO, introduced the event and Jenny Adam, Editor-in-chief of FundForum also said a few words. Claire Savage, our COO also attended.

New #WomenInFunds initiatives

FundForum and the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association (CAIA) each announced an initiative to support and help women succeed in fund management.

  • FundForum #WomenInFunds Rising Star Fellowship

FundForum is kindly offering ten free places to FundForum 2017 to women under 30 showing original thinking about the future of fund management in any aspect of the business.

  • CAIA #WomenInFunds scholarship

CAIA’s scholarship includes a waiver of the enrollment and registration fees for its Level I exams (worth USD $1,650) and will be offered to a woman professional in the asset management space. To apply contact Laura Merlini via email at lmerlini@caia.org.

Do you want to help with the next #WomenInFunds event?

womeninfunds 1

Claire Savage, AQMetrics COO on left with Geraldine Gibson, CEO, on Claire’s right

We want to ensure that #WomenInFunds meetings are held at future related events.

If you would like to be involved in the next network event which we aim to have at the US Funds Forum – Strategies for Asset Managers to respond successfully to disruption – from 25-27 October in Boston, please email info@aqmetrics.com

We welcome all input from our #WomenInFunds colleagues. Please email info@aqmetrics.com

More information

#WomenInFunds Berlin Photos

#womeninfundswomeninfunds 2 womeninfunds 3

#womeninfunds


Press

AQMetrics gears up for expansion

Claire Savage COO & Geraldine Gibson CEO. Pic. Bryan Meade 2/6/2016

Claire Savage COO & Geraldine Gibson CEO

 

The Sunday Business Post published an article on aqmetrics expansion plans on the 5 June 2016, noting:

Maynooth-based company plans to double its staff numbers to 30

AQMetrics, the risk management and compliance software company which raised $3.25 million recently, has hired four new executives as it gears up to expand internationally.

Founded by Geraldine Gibson in 2012, the Maynooth-based company plans to double its staff numbers to 30 within 12 months.

See Tom Lyon’s article on aqmetrics expansion plans in the Sunday Business Post on 5 June 2016 here.


Buzz

AQMetrics expands into North America

Delighted to announce the official opening of our first U.S. Office.

US Office


Blog, UCITS

New UCITS risk reporting requirements from the CSSF

On 22 April 2016, the CSSF released instructions on the new reporting template related to the risk and risk management of UCITS funds. The first report must be filed by 16 May 2016.

The reporting applies to those UCITS that either have more than €500 million total net assets (TNA), or that use the VaR method for calculating global exposure and have an average leverage greater than or equal to 250% of the UCITS’ total net assets.

The following is a list of the main information to be submitted:

  • leverage per risk factor (sum of notional amounts; optionally: commitment)
  • sum of notional amounts per derivative category
  • % liquidity per time bucket
  • % shareholdings of the UCITS per sector classification
  • debt portfolios only: % TNA per rating class (1, 2, 3, …10)
  • debt portfolios only: % TNA per credit spread bucket
  • % TNA per type of credit-linked instruments
  • minimum/maximum/arithmetic average use of EPM techniques
  • collateral from EPM derivatives
  • details of the largest counterparty exposures
  • collateral from OTC derivatives
  • new stress tests / sensitivities

This information has to be continually submitted to the CSSF, so efficiency and a systematic approach to the reporting is key.

For more information on the reporting requirements see https://www.cssf.lu/en/supervision/ivm/ucits/legal-reporting/

 


Buzz, Form PF

AQMetrics is ready for PFRD Release 2016.04

AQMetrics Form PF reporting application is now updated to comply with recent Form PF changes (PFRD Release 2016.04) which consist of more onerous granular reporting requirements and a new version of the Form PF xml schema. These Form PF changes (officially  “PFRD Release 2016.04”) include rearranged question numbers, an update to data types, a removed sub-asset class, and a new checkbox to indicate CFTC compliance.

Specifically:

    • Question 5 has a new tag “NFAFundCFTCComplianceFlag”
    • Data types were updated for Questions 20, 25, 28, 32, 40, 46 and 50
    • A sub-asset class was removed from Question 35
    • Questions 56 and 57 were removed
    • Questions 58 – 64 were renumbered to 56 – 62
    • Questions 63 and 64 were added

The changes are effective from the 16 April 2016.


Press

AQMetrics to expand into US

sundaytimes

The Sunday Times published an article on aqmetrics 2016 funding round on the 21 February 2016, noting:

AQMETRICS, a software company that helps investment managers meet Central Bank reporting guidelines, has raised $3.25m (€2.9m) from Frontline Ventures, Bluff Point Associates, and Enterprise Ireland.

The company, which was founded by Geraldine Gibson three years ago, is planning to hire 30 new staff and open an office in New York, where demand for its software has been growing rapidly.

“The product we have delivered into Europe is suitable for the US marketplace and is a solution that has been proven to work,” said Gibson. US funds using the software in Europe encouraged Gibson to bring the software across the Atlantic.

“The reason for taking the funding is so we can achieve scale in the US,” she said.

Gibson established her company after a career working in the financial and technology sectors.

See Vincent Ryan’s article on aqmetrics funding round in the Sunday Times on 21 February 2016 here.


Press

AQMetrics raises $3.25m from International Investors to Build Team & Expand to US

DUBLIN, February 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ 

AQMetrics, an integrated risk management, regulatory compliance and surveillance software provider, today announced that it has closed its first external funding round. The $3.25million round consists of investors Frontline Ventures, Bluff Point Associates, and Enterprise Ireland.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160216/333606)

AQMetrics was founded by Geraldine Gibson in 2012 when she noted that Investment Managers were finding themselves in an era of great change, making risk management and compliance exceptionally complicated. AQMetrics offers a simple, innovative and effective way to address regulatory risk and compliance. The firm delivers an ultra-fast, high quality cloud based platform that saves its clients time and money.

AQMetrics’ current team of 12 has been dedicated to building AQMetrics’ platform for the last three years. As a result, AQMetrics software as a service has been used by both EU and Non-EU Investment Firms to submit regulatory filings to regulators in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, the UK, Germany and Ireland. With a fast-growing client demand, the team is capitalising on the momentum: AQ Metrics will be hiring 30 roles in Ireland within the next 12 months and establishing a New York office in the next six months.

“At AQMetrics we saw that a very clear gap existed for a technologically advanced cloud based platform to simplify regulatory complexity in real time. We believe that AQMetrics will play a transformative role in the way Investment Managers meet their global regulatory obligations. The addition of Frontline Ventures and Bluff Point Associates as investors will help drive AQMetrics’ ambition to build on its existing success as a leader in the European RegTech space by establishing a US presence,” said Geraldine Gibson, CEO of AQMetrics.

Tom McInerney, CEO of Bluff Point Associates said, “We are very excited to partner with Geraldine and the team at AQMetrics to expand its growth opportunities here in the US. We see tremendous upside for Fintech firms in the ever increasing world of regulation, risk management and compliance reporting. This will be Bluff Point’s first investment in Ireland, where we have strong personal links and are delighted to have them join our growing portfolio of financial and healthcare technology companies.”

Frontline Ventures partner Shay Garvey said, “We are really excited to back such an ambitious founder – Geraldine had her eye set on international markets from the start. Her dedicated team is testament to the innovative RegTech product that AQMetrics has built.”

About AQMetrics
The AQMetrics platform integrates pricing, risk and regulatory solutions into a single offering. AQMetrics helps its clients stay compliant while eliminating errors, reducing downtime, avoiding risks and minimizing regulatory breaches. AQMetrics provides clients with end to end data management solutions, from data preparation through to reporting to comply with existing and future financial services regulations. AQMetrics delivers turnkey Pre and Post Trade Monitoring, UCITS Rules Monitoring, AIFMD Risk Management and Annex IV Reporting, AML/KYC and UBO monitoring, EMIR Reporting and OPERA Reports. Using AQMetrics firms can: track investor activity, orders, executions and holdings from pre to post trade; receive risk alerts and notification of compliance breaches; and gain access to a dedicated team of industry specialists who assist in the simplification of regulatory risk and compliance.

About Bluff Point Associates
Bluff Point Associates is a private equity firm based in Westport, Connecticut. Bluff Point actively invests in the healthcare information services sector as well as information services companies supporting the banking, trust, securities, retirement and wealth management sectors of the financial services industry. Bluff Point’s team collectively has decades of experience in recognizing a company’s growth potential and working with its management to reach that potential. For more information regarding Bluff Point, visithttp://www.bluffpt.com.

About Frontline Ventures
Frontline Ventures is an early-stage venture capital fund based in London and Dublin, with a focus on European enterprise SaaS startups. Frontline is focused on the needs of the new wave of technology entrepreneurs – investing in the best teams that build capital-efficient businesses in high-growth markets. For more information, visit http://www.frontline.vc

–        Ends –

Photo:
http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160216/333606

Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160216/333606
http://photoarchive.ap.org/
Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160216/333606
http://photoarchive.ap.org/
AQ Metrics

CONTACT: For media inquiries, an interview, or extra images, please contact Suzanne McGann. E-mail: suzanne.mcgann@aqmetrics.com, Tel: +353-(1)-6292607


Press

AQMetrics connects to DTCC trade repository

DUBLIN, February 11, 2016

AQMetrics, a leading provider of integrated risk and compliance software for the investment management industry, announced today a new connection to The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation’s (DTCC) Global Trade Repository (DTCC GTR), the leading provider of trade reporting services in Europe.

“AQMetrics (AQM) provides clients with end to end data management solutions, from data preparation through to reporting to comply with existing and future regulation. AQM’s working relationship with DTCC’s GTR will help bring efficiencies to mutual clients with reporting obligations under European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) and in the future, Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR)” said Geraldine Gibson, CEO, from AQMetrics.

AQMetrics delivers turnkey Pre and Post Trade Monitoring for Reg NMS, OATS and OTS reporting, UCITS Rules Monitoring, AIFMD Risk Management and Annex IV Reporting, AML/KYC and UBO monitoring, EMIR Reporting and OPERA Reports. Using AQMetrics firms can: track investor activity, orders, executions and holdings from pre to post trade; receive risk alerts and notification of compliance breaches; and gain access to a dedicated team of industry specialists who assist in the simplification of regulatory risk and compliance for Investment Managers.

DTCC’s GTR is dedicated to bringing greater transparency, risk mitigation and cost efficiency to the global OTC derivatives market. Clients with EMIR reporting requirements can achieve efficient and cost-effective compliance with these evolving regulations leveraging the GTR service.

“We are delighted to be working with DTCC GTR,” said Geraldine Gibson, CEO at AQMetrics. “Recently we have seen increased client demand for automated end to end EMIR reporting; and as a result we recognise the need to provide our clients with even more choice from our ‘One Stop’ shop.

– Ends –


Blog, Market Data

The latest methodology for the valuation of derivative liabilities

Today the European Banking Authority (EBA) published the final draft Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) on the methodology for the valuation of derivative liabilities for the purpose of bail-in in resolution. These draft RTS have been developed according to paragraph 5 of Article 49 of Directive 2014/59/EU (BRRD). These standards provide EU resolution authorities with a methodology for the valuation of derivative liabilities of credit institutions placed under resolution and ensure that the discipline brought in by the new bail-in tool can effectively be extended to these liabilities too.

Derivative counterparties will be given the opportunity to provide evidence of commercially reasonable replacement trades within a certain deadline; if they do not exercise this option, then resolution authorities will apply a statutory methodology supported by observable market data or other relevant information.

Resolution authorities may establish the value of derivative liabilities as on the close-out date or as on the date when a price is available in the market. For centrally cleared derivatives, the final draft RTS provides for a process that relies in principle on the Central Counterparty (CCP) default and takes into account the applicable regulatory framework under the EU Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR)

You can find the RTS on valuation of derivatives here


AML, Blog

Report on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Financial Sanctions Compliance in the Irish Funds Sector

On 18th November 2015, the Central Bank of Ireland (“CBI”) issued a report entitled: Report on Anti-Money Laundering/Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Financial Sanctions Compliance in the Irish Funds Sector(the “Report”). The report is based on site inspections carried out by the CBI over the course of 2014.

All Funds and Fund Service Providers should carefully consider the issues raised in the report, and to use the report to inform the development of their AML/CFT and FS frameworks.

What are the main issues raised in the report?

The Report identifies that more work is required by firms in Ireland to effectively manage money laundering/terrorist financing risks.

The Report found insufficient evidence of adequate and timely risk assessments . The CBI expects that risk assessments be conducted and reviewed at least annually, and that these assessments include all risk categories. The risk assessment should document controls in place to mitigate risks with action plans to address any gaps. Policies and procedures should be kept up to date and reflect any changes in the risk assessment.

The Report highlights that, while Funds may delegate many of their AML/CFT functions, they remain responsible for
ensuring compliance and oversight of these outsourced activities. The CBI expects that such oversight includes a review of the Administrator’s policies and procedures along with assurance testing of AML/CFT processes, for example, through sample testing of investor files.

The Report identifies a number of issues in relation to investors including:

  • Inappropriate application of SCDD, and application of SCDD without supporting evidence justifying the approach;
  • Deficiencies around beneficial owner information and verification;
  • Failures in the management of PEPs;
  • Failures of Fund Boards to retain adequate control over sign off of relationships;
  • Failure to document source of funds and source of wealth;

With regards to Customer Due Diligence (“CDD”), the CBI found that arrangements with third parties to conduct elements of CDD were lacking required conditions. The CBI expects that policies and procedures set out circumstances under which a Fund would cease to provide services or discontinue a relationship due to an investor’s failure to provide CDD documentation. The Report is clear that the blocking of additional subscriptions to a Fund does not constitute the discontinuation of a business relationship.

The Report noted that not all Board members engaged in on-going AML/CFT training and outlines the CBI’s expectation that all persons involved in the conduct of the business (including staff at outsourced service providers) are provided with AML training, and that adequate training records for all staff are retained.

How can AQMetrics Help?

AQMetrics software is used by Fund Managers to spot check their outsourced AML/CFT and FS functions. AQMetrics training is delivered over the web to ensure that all Board members receive on-going AML/CFT training.

If you would like to discuss AQMetrics AML/CFT and FS services or have any queries related to AQMetrics in general, please contact Lorna Devlin +353 1 6292607


AIFMD, Blog

Important Update: AIFMD Annex IV reporting for Q4 2015

The Irish regulator, the Central Bank of Ireland (CBI), has changed its policy and will require US and other non-EU alternative investment fund managers (non-EU AIFMs) to make “Annex IV” reports in respect of master funds if one or more of that master fund’s feeder funds are marketed in Ireland.  Such reporting will become mandatory from the reporting period beginning on 01 January 2016. For quarterly reporting AIFMs, the report will be due to be submitted by 30 April 2016. Non-EU AIFMS are, however, encouraged by the CBI to include available information in respect of non-EU master AIFs in their reports for the reporting period ending on 31 December 2015 (which, must be submitted by 31 January 2016).

Who does this change affect?

US and other non-European AIFMs of alternative investment funds (AIFs) who market a non-European feeder AIF into Ireland under the national private placement regime (NPPR) established under Article 42 of AIFMD but do not market the corresponding master are impacted.

What is the change?

Annex IV reports to the CBI have needed to be in respect of the feeder AIF only. With effect from the end of this month, the CBI will require Annex IV reports to be made in respect of the master fund.

What should managers do now?

Non-EU AIFMs impacted by these changes will have to put in place systems and procedures to complete the Annex IV reports in respect of master AIF-level data and report the same by the end of January 2016. Because the obligation to make an Annex IV report is triggered by marketing, non-EU AIFMs which have not attracted investment should consider whether or not they wish to retain the ability to market the relevant feeder AIFs in Ireland under that country’s NPPR or whether they should retract their registration(s).

How can AQMetrics Help?

The good news is that AQMetrics has a turnkey solution for Annex IV reporting, which is used by many EU alternative investment fund managers to comply with AIFMD regulations. AQMetrics makes it simple for the US and non-EU managers to comply with the regulations in accordance with the Q1 2016 deadline

 


AIFMD, Blog

The latest version of the AIF Rulebook is published on 04 December 2015

On 4 November 2015, the Central Bank of Ireland published the latest version of the AIF Rulebook. The AIF Rulebook is the Central Bank  of Ireland’s rulebook in relation to AIFs which contains chapters concerning Retail Investor AIF, Qualifying Investor AIF, AIF Management Companies, Fund Administrators, Alternative Investment Fund Managers and AIF Depositaries.

The latest Rulebook can be found here.


Press

aqmetrics CEO on being part of the FinTech Revolution

Read AQMetrics CEO, Geraldine Gibson, on being part of the Fintech revolution Here


Best Execution, Blog, MAD II

ESMA Publishes MAD/MAR Q&A

The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA) has published a Q&A document regarding the implementation of the Market Abuse Regulation.

The purpose of the document is to promote convergent implementation and application of the market abuse regime. The document is aimed at national competent authorities, investors and market participants to ensure supervisory convergence by providing clarity on existing market abuse requirements, rather than creating an extra layer of requirements.

The Q&A currently covers the following issues:

  1. Disclosure of inside information related to dividend policy; and
  2. Disclosure of inside information related to Pillar II requirements.

View ESMA’S MAD / MAR Q&A here


Best Execution, Blog, MiFID II

What MiFID II means for Investment Firms

On 3 January 2017, the new MiFID II regime will come into force. This wide-ranging piece of legislation covers retail and wholesale investment firms and trading venues and may affect a significant number of the business activities of investment firms within its scope.

 

This article is the first in a series where we example ‘What MiFID II means for Investment Firms’.

 

Revamped Liquidity Assessment

To provide greater transparency in the non-equities markets so investors are adequately informed about the real level of trading opportunities, ESMA has introduced a revamped liquidity assessment. Homogeneous classes of instruments are created by dividing them into asset classes, sub-asset classes and, in most cases, sub-classes. Criteria specifying the basis for segmenting are listed under the most granular level. For most classes, liquidity is calculated annually, using the average daily notional amount and the average daily number of trades, and measured against set thresholds.

Liquidity Assessment for Derivatives

To maintain current market practice a different approach is proposed for equity derivatives which classifies the majority of equity derivatives as liquid.

Furthermore, ESMA proposes all foreign exchange derivatives are deemed illiquid initially and reviewed when more reliable data is available.

Liquidity Assessment for Bonds

Bond liquidity will be calibrated on an instrument by instrument basis (known as IBIA) using three cumulative criteria:

  1. The average daily notional amount;
  2. The average daily number of trades,
  3. And the minimum number of days on which the bond traded over a set period.

A bond’s liquidity will be re-assessed at the end of every quarter, based on the last 3-month’s activity, and newly issued instruments will be deemed to be liquid or illiquid according to their issuance size for the first quarter.

The treatment of packaged transactions

Packaged transactions comprise of several contingent components. Where at least one component of the package is above the LIS or SSTI thresholds, or deemed illiquid, a deferral from post-trade transparency requirements may be granted. There is not a corresponding waiver from pretrade transparency.

Transaction reporting

MiFID II upgrades the transaction reporting regime. ESMA specified that transactions and instrument reference data should be reported in accordance with ISO 20022 for consistency and introduced new rules to govern how EEA branches of non-EEA firms should transaction report.

Best execution

To improve investor protection by increasing transparency on where investment firms execute client orders and on the execution quality achieved, firms must publish annual details of the top five execution venues for each class of financial instrument and the quality of execution obtained

Timeline for implementation

Timeline


Blog, UCITS

The Central Bank UCITS Regulations will come into effect on 1 November 2015

The Central Bank has today, 5 October 2015, published the Central Bank UCITS Regulations and feedback statements on CP77 – Consultation on publication of UCITS Rulebook and CP84 – Consultation on adoption of ESMA’s revised guidelines on ETFs and other UCITS issues.

The Central Bank UCITS Regulations consolidate into one location all of the requirements which the Central Bank imposes on UCITS, UCITS management companies and depositaries of UCITS.  They supplement existing legislative requirements, in particular the European Communities (Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities) Regulations 2011.  The Central Bank UCITS Regulations will come into effect on 1 November 2015.


Press

AQMetrics announces agreement with Exchange Data International

Thursday, October 01, 2015

Dublin, Ireland, October 01, 2015 –(PR.com)– AQMetrics, a leading provider of integrated risk and compliance software for the investment management industry, announced today an agreement with Exchange Data International (EDI), a well-established provider of reference and corporate actions data. EDI will provide Market and Corporate Actions data to AQMetrics clients through AQMetrics cloud based risk and compliance software.

AQMetrics delivers turnkey Pre and Post Trade Monitoring for Reg NMS, OATS and OTS reporting, UCITS Rules Monitoring, AIFMD Risk Management and Annex IV Reporting, AML/KYC and UBO monitoring, EMIR Reporting and OPERA Reports. Using AQMetrics firms can: track investor activity, orders, executions and holdings from pre to post trade; receive risk alerts and notification of compliance breaches; and gain access to a dedicated team of industry specialists who assist in the simplification of regulatory risk and compliance for Investment Managers.

In addition to EDI Market Data, AQMetrics further added EDI’s Corporate Actions Data to its software. With data sourced directly from all of the world’s major stock exchanges, the Worldwide Corporate Actions service provides up-to-date and accurate equity-based corporate actions information, and provides coverage on over 150 International Exchanges, with detailed announcements on 54 corporate actions event types. EDI’s Fixed Income Corporate Actions Service follows corporate actions events on nearly 400,000 bonds from 100 countries and Supranationals. In addition to interest payments (both fixed and floating), the fixed income service covers another 40 event types. The data is sourced from stock exchanges, central banks, ministries of finance, paying and transfer agents.

“We are very excited about our new relationship with AQMetrics, as it brings EDI’s data to a new audience,” said Kevin Brady, Executive Director for Exchange Data International. “This relationship demonstrates EDI’s commitment to building strong relationships to provide the industry with high standard services.”

“We are delighted to be working with EDI in order to expand the market and corporate actions data available to our clients through AQMetrics software,” said Geraldine Gibson, CEO at AQMetrics. “Recently we have seen increased client demand for consolidated market and corporate actions data from multiple market data sources; and as a result we recognise the need provide our clients with even more choice from our ‘One Stop’ shop.

For more information on the services provided by both companies contact either Kevin Brady (k.brady@exchange-data.com) at Exchange Data International or AQMetrics at info@aqmetrics.com

About AQMetrics
AQMetrics delivers integrated compliance and risk management software, and value added services. AQMetrics cloud software provides financial services firms with solutions to systematically meet their AIFMD, UCITS, MiFID and EMIR challenges. For media inquiries please contact Lorna Devlin at +353 1 6292607.

About Exchange Data International
Exchange Data International (EDI) helps the global financial and investment community make informed decisions through the provision of fast, accurate timely and affordable data reference services.

EDI’s extensive content database includes worldwide equity and fixed income corporate actions, dividends, static reference data, closing prices and shares outstanding, delivered via data feeds and the Internet.

The firm covers all major markets with special emphasis on emerging and frontier markets that are Africa, Asia, Far East, Latin America and Middle East.

EDI is based in London, with offices in New York and India and Morocco.

For more information about EDI visit www.exchange-data.com

Contact Information:
Exchange Data International
Anais Bresle
+44 207 324 0050
Contact via Email
http://www.exchange-data.com

Read the full story here: http://www.pr.com/press-release/639567


Blog, Cyber Security

The management of Cyber Security Risks within the Investment Firm and Fund Services Industry

Under investment in Technology over the past seven years has left Investment Firms fearful that they are vulnerable to some form of cyber attack, but does the Board and C suite know what they really need to do, how much is really enough and who they can trust to help them get it right? Let’s face it, all financial services firms irrespective of size are exposed to cyber risk, however acting under fear is not the answer. A well thought out cyber security strategy will help firms remain attractive to investors and robust in protecting their reputation, a knee jerk reaction to the fear of a cyber security threat could do just the opposite.

Summary observations from the U.S. Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) examinations of registered broker-dealers and investment advisers, conducted under the Cybersecurity Examination Initiative, announced April 15, 2014 clearly shows that OCIE is investing time and resources on analyzing the cyber security risk area among Investment Management firms. The recently published Thematic Review of the Management of Operational Risk around Cyber-Security within the Investment Firm and Fund Services Industry by the Central Bank of Ireland further shows that regulators are focused on Cyber-Security.

So where do you start with defining your firms Cyber Security Policy? A good place to begin is the U.K. Governments Cyber Essentials Scheme. Review your cyber security policies under three main headings –  people, processes and technology to ensure that your firms approach to cyber security is systematic and robust.