ICMA has updated both its Operations FinTech directory for repo and cash bonds (previously ‘FinTech mapping directory’) and Repo trading technology directory in the last quarter. In parallel with the review, ICMA is gathering the views of ICMA European Repo and Collateral Council (ERCC) members on current market trends and developments, challenges and opportunities for post-trade repo solutions – a link to access additional commentary will be available in the upcoming ICMA Quarterly Report.
- The post-trade environment has recently seen multiple mergers, acquisitions, and collaborative ventures.
- These developments appear to be driven by demand for cross-asset expansion, extending capabilities to buy-side participants, and leveraging data management and communication capabilities.
- Simplicity and ease of onboarding is a key consideration for selecting vendor firms. The level of connectivity between the vendor and the market ecosystem is of equal importance.
- The normalisation of internal and external data flows is a key challenge firms continue to focus on.
- It remains to be seen how many providers the market can maintain in a fragmented ecosystem.
Operations FinTech directory
The Operations Fintech directory now includes over 200 solutions, compared to 165 solutions from the June 2020 review and 87 solutions when first launched in November 2017. It is divided into 10 categories comprising collateral management, corporate actions, exposure agreement, intraday liquidity monitoring and reporting, matching, confirmation & allocation, reconciliations but also ancillary areas such as static data and SSI, workflow and communication and KYC onboarding.
The 47 new solutions listed since last publication correspond to offerings from 9 providers, including 7 newly listed vendors. The highest category increases, as seen from newly listed solutions, were for collateral lifecycle & margin management (10 additions, 50 in total), and intraday liquidity monitoring & reporting (8 additions, 24 in total). Solutions for exposure agreements (6 additions, 23 in total) and matching, confirmation & allocation (5 additions, 19 in total) saw moderate increases. The review also captured 6 additional workflow and communication offerings, bringing the total to 25 in this category.
Repo trading technology directory
The Repo trading technology directory now includes a total of 20 platforms, compared to 9 trading venues upon launch in April 2020. The scope was first revised in June 2020 to include other front-office trading tools and now includes details for 6 order and/or execution management systems (O/EMS) providing connectivity to multiple repo trading venues. The directory also provides details on market type (such as D2D, D2C), clearing and collateral management configurations, and other information such as regulatory status, MIC codes, and other services offered, among other items.
Given the importance of platform connectivity and interoperability with current financial market infrastructure, the updated technology directories include information on supported electronic communication protocols and standards. Unsurprisingly, the majority of trade platforms support FIX and API connectivity. Similarly, post-trade solutions mostly support FIX and API connectivity, in addition to Swift and additional protocols such as SFTP, Flat Files, with several providers supporting blockchain protocols.
The directories do not constitute an exhaustive list of providers in the market. Relevant providers that are not yet included and wish to join are very welcome to do so.