Corporate action processing remains one of the key areas in the STP chain requiring a significant amount of manual intervention, with resulting implications for cost, staff training and an increase in risk resulting from human error.
EDI is an active participant in the Securities Market Practice Group (vendor working party) contributing to the standardisation of the ISO 15022 message types. EDI will be in the position to provide test data to clients by the end of Q1. In the first phase the data will cover messages featuring dividend information, including cash dividends, stock dividends, dividend options and dividend reinvestment plans.
In adopting the ISO 15022 standard, EDI is supporting the custodian message format. Adding corporate action data in a uniformed structure will give clients the ability to automate validation and processing of critical data items.
"Dividend information provides in excess of 50% of all corporate action event volumes," says Kevin Brady, director of EDI. "By taking this information in standard SWIFT/ISO 15022 format, clients will be able to see a rapid return on investment and derive maximum benefit from automation. Moreover, looked at from a global perspective dividend information tends to be highly seasonal, resulting in an increase in operational risk during peak periods. Automated processing substantially reduces risk and saves money."
The phased introduction is unique among data vendors and is intended to provide the maximum flexibility for clients integrating the data into their corporate action processing systems. "Every institution has different requirements for their corporate actions processing," says Brady. "By taking this phased approach and talking to our clients, we are able to provide the end user with a solution to the greater part of the problem very rapidly."
In subsequent phases, EDI will extend the standard to more corporate action messages dealing with capital changes including rights issues, stock splits and bonus issues.