Focus shifting away from SWIFT Phase 2 to more pressing regulatory changes

9 October 2006

Misys Banking Systems survey finds that almost half of banks have not started on a SEPA project yet

Misys Banking Systems, a global leader in banking software and solutions, announces today the results of its latest survey of plans and attitudes within banks around financial messaging and payments.

The main findings include:

· Nearly half (46%) saw barriers to using SWIFTSolutions in the future including other priorities, such as STEP2, Target2 and other regulations. (A third of respondents are currently focusing on Target2)
· Two-thirds (66%) would not consider outsourcing payments processing
· 82% are planning to invest further in messaging infrastructure to improve STP
· 54% of the respondents have a SEPA project in place
· The majority (92%) of the banks surveyed expected their SWIFT usage to increase in the future

The survey, which follows on from a similar one in August 2005, reveals a decrease in the take-up of SWIFTSolutions. When asked for the obstructions to adapting new SWIFTSolutions, 46% of respondents admitted that regulatory pressures, such as STEP2 and Target2 have shifted their focus. This coincides with the increase in awareness of SEPA and the regulatory changes in the payments world.

More banks this year identified SEPA as a catalyst for transforming their internal infrastructure for messaging processing to cope with SWIFTNet services and standards. Additionally, the survey found that almost two-thirds of respondents stated that they would not consider outsourcing payments processing, while a greater number of them have plans to invest in their messaging infrastructure.

Barry Kislingbury, global product manager, financial messaging, Misys Banking Systems comments, “While the respondents understand the critical role that messaging infrastructure has within their business, the majority of them are not fully aware of how they can leverage it to realise the full potential of SEPA. A large number of banks are putting off planning their activities around SEPA until they understand the implications better. We have found that while banks are aware that SEPA will affect them, the detail required to implement the requirements does not yet exist, so plans cannot be finalised. The first deadline of January 2008 is getting nearer and banks need to have their payments infrastructure ready in time.”

The survey, which canvassed opinions from 136 banks across the world, was conducted in August 2006 by Misys Banking Systems in the fifth successive year of achieving SWIFTReady Gold accreditation.

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