Mike Bodson, President & CEO: 2020 will be a year dominated by the impact of geopolitical events, digitization and tokenized securities. On geopolitics, the execution of Brexit, ongoing trade tensions and the upcoming US elections will be closely watched by market participants around the world and could have consequences on market stability. At the same time, we expect the digital transformation of financial services to continue, with further adoption of new technologies, the emergence of digital platforms and the increased use of application programming interfaces (APIs). The move to digital platforms and the development of APIs will better enable data to flow seamlessly between systems and provide clients with the flexibility to conduct business tailored to their needs. One of the top issues the industry and regulators will need to address is developing rules for the post-trade processing of tokenized securities to protect market stability.
Susan Cosgrove, CFO: New technologies, such as distributed ledgers, artificial intelligence and robotics, will continue to be important themes in 2020. For market infrastructures, when new technologies are adopted in a thoughtful manner for the appropriate post-trade processes, there are multiple benefits, including increased operational efficiency, reduced risk and cost and increased client value. I believe that CFOs have an important strategic role to play when it comes to the adoption of new technologies because we have the skillset to strike the right balance between innovation and financially-sound decision-making. For innovative market infrastructures, I expect to see the role of CFO in the adoption of technology strategies to grow in the coming years as firms closely evaluate business cases and financial investments.
Tim Keady, managing director and head of DTCC Solutions: From both sell-side and buy-side firms, we are hearing that a continued priority in 2020 will be reducing costs while ensuring that requisite systems and processes are in place for firms to meet new regulations, including Securities Finance Transaction Regulation and the Settlement Discipline Regime. Currently, many clients are using these regulatory imperatives to revamp the patchwork of siloed platforms they use for their post-trade processing into fully-integrated and automated systems, which can deliver increased operational efficiencies, lower costs and assist with regulatory compliance. This operational investment is a theme we expect to continue well into the next decade.
Murray Pozmanter, managing director and head of Clearing Agency Services: While organizations continue to experiment and invest in emerging fintech, many firms have come to the conclusion that innovation is only beneficial when the end result equates to stronger and safer markets. A key theme for 2020 will be how the financial industry continues to progress with combining proven, stable infrastructures with new technologies, and how those projects scale for adoption in high-volume, highly-regulated markets. The optimal solution isn’t always the newest technology. In many cases, enhancing existing infrastructures delivers better results. For example, when accelerating settlement to T+2 in the US, the underlying infrastructure wasn’t changed; but processes were updated, which led to a highly successful outcome.
Andrew Gray, Group CRO: In 2020, we expect to see continued focus on risk reduction from policy makers and a heightened attention on operational and business resilience and the continuity of services in the event of a disruption. The Bank of England’s recent consultation paper on new requirements to strengthen operational resilience in the financial services sector reinforces how important this issue will be. This is supported by the results of our most recent Systemic Risk Barometer survey, where 75% of respondents indicated that their firms plan to increase investments to enhance resilience. Critical to achieving operational resilience is a holistic approach to risk management, built on the foundation of intelligent resilience, which means finding the optimal balance of technology, data analysis and human capabilities.