18 March 2013

ISO Standards remain industry’s top choice for Funds Processing Automation

Brussels, 18 March 2013 - The European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA) today published in cooperation with SWIFT, a new report on the evolution of automation and standardisation rates of fund orders received by transfer agents (TAs) in the cross-border fund centres of Luxembourg and Ireland in 2012. This report confirms that the automation rate and the use of the ISO standards in the fund industry continued to increase in 2012.

This report is an ongoing campaign by EFAMA and SWIFT to highlight the advancement of automation and standardisation rates of orders of cross-border funds. 32 TAs in Ireland and Luxembourg, representing more than 80 percent of the total incoming third-party investment funds order volumes in both markets, participated in the survey.

The report highlights are as follows:

  • Total automation rates continued to climb throughout the year to reach 77.7% at the end of 2012. This trend was driven by a very strong increase of ISO adoption (+6.2%).
  • Manual processing and the use of proprietary File Transfer Protocol (FTP) formats continued to decline in 2012 (-1.7% for manual processing and -4.5% for proprietary FTP).
  • Luxembourg made significant progress towards standardisation in 2012. The ISO automation rate rose to 56.5% in 2012, and the total automation rate increased to 73.7% (+2.8% compared to Q4 2011).
  • Ireland's progress towards automation continued, with a total automation rate reaching 85.3% at the end 2012. The use of ISO messaging standards increased by 6.2%, reflecting a fall in the use of proprietary FTP usage (-5.9% over the same period).

Peter De Proft, EFAMA Director General, notes: "We welcome the progress achieved towards ISO standardization in processing cross-border fund orders.  It is important to continue moving in this direction to increase efficiency in the fund industry, reduce operational risk and improve the quality of its services."

Fabian Vandenreydt, Head of Securities Markets & Core Business Development, SWIFT, adds: "Despite declining orders volumes, it is very encouraging to notice that ISO remains the first choice among market participants; the 80 per cent threshold of total automation remains an important industry goal to strengthen efficiency, but an increase of more than 6% of ISO over the reporting period is yet another sign of the priority that the industry has set to itself".

* Please see the accompanying attachment for the joint EFAMA/SWIFT standardisation report for 2012 and the ‘Notes to editors' section for further information about EFAMA and SWIFT.

For more information, please contact:

Peter De Proft
Director General
EFAMA
Peter.Deproft@efama.org
Tel: +32-2-513 39 69
info@efama.org

Bernard Delbecque
Director of Economics and Research
EFAMA
Bernard.Delbecque@efama.org
Tel: +32-2-513 39 69
info@efama.org

Valérie Letellier
Senior Market Manager, Marketing 
SWIFT 
Valerie.letellier@swift.com
Tel: +32-2-655 3944
JoAnn.Healy@swift.com

Fund Processing Standardisation

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18 March 2013

Annual Report on automation and standardisation of cross-border funds orders in 2012

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Notes to editors:

About the European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA)
EFAMA is the representative association for the European investment management industry. EFAMA represents through its 27 member associations and 59 corporate members about EUR 14 trillion in assets under management of which EUR 8.9 trillion managed by 54,000 investment funds at end December 2012. Just over 35,000 of these funds were UCITS (Undertakings for Collective Investments in Transferable Securities) funds. For more information about EFAMA, please visit http://www.efama.org.

About SWIFT
SWIFT is a member-owned cooperative that provides the communications platform, products and services to connect over 10,000 banking organisations, securities institutions and corporate customers in 212 countries. SWIFT enables its users to exchange automated, standardised financial information securely and reliably, thereby lowering costs, reducing operational risk and eliminating operational inefficiencies. SWIFT also brings the financial community together to work collaboratively to shape market practice, define standards and debate issues of mutual interest. For more information about SWIFT, please visit http://www.swift.com.

The report can be downloaded on the websites of EFAMA and SWIFT.