Interactive Data Offers New Evaluated Pricing Challenge Portal

New York and London - 12 October 2010

Easy-to-use online tool offers clients workflow efficiencies by capturing information and automating reports; helps to improve turnaround time

Interactive Data Corporation, a leading provider of financial market data, analytics and related solutions, today announced that it now offers an innovative client management and compliance oversight tool, which is designed to provide audit trails and compliance reports for a firm’s pricing challenge process. This new, easy-to-use web-based challenge portal can increase client workflow efficiency by centralizing information and generating management reports, as well as improving the turnaround time of challenges. The portal can also provide clients with additional transparency to the overall challenge process.

With increasing focus on the oversight of the valuation process and the need for rigorous reporting procedures, the new challenge portal enables Interactive Data’s clients to centralize their interactions with Interactive Data and other pricing vendors. Interactive Data has recently developed an API (application programming interface) that enables clients to further customize the portal for use with their internal systems, and supports the development of a centralized repository and functionality for all client challenges, including those directed to other third party vendors.

At any point in the day, clients have the ability to enter one or multiple evaluated pricing challenges directly through the portal, track existing challenges and monitor progress through the use of various report generation options, without having to contact Interactive Data’s client service team. Interactive Data’s innovative technology helps verify and validate information inputs, such as security identifiers, and functionality has been created to import and download information using Microsoft® Excel® spreadsheets, widely used in the financial services industry.

Client challenges are categorized into several levels based on the amount and type of information provided, and those challenges that include market information are prioritized for review. Clients receive instantaneous feedback on the challenge level and the expected turnaround times based on the amount of information provided. Email alerts are delivered upon the initiation and completion of a service request. The portal enables Interactive Data’s teams of evaluators to more quickly incorporate new and relevant market information to further enhance the evaluation process. The portal also helps to identify evaluation challenge trends and provides more transparency into the evaluation process.

“The increase in volatility and wider bid-ask spreads for certain asset classes post Lehman has led to an increase in price challenges,” said Liz Duggan, Interactive Data’s managing director, Global Evaluations. “Clients were overwhelmed by the volume of evaluation price challenges that they needed to process, track and resolve. We have created a tool to address the administrative pain that they were experiencing."

"The challenge portal will assist firms with a key part of the oversight function by providing them with a more efficient process of initiating and tracking evaluated pricing inquiries,” added Liz Duggan. “Through the challenge portal, clients can demonstrate to auditors and their compliance teams a centralized process, an audit trail and management reports.”

The challenge portal is supported by Interactive Data’s highly-rated client service organization and is offered at no extra cost to clients worldwide as part of the evaluated pricing service.

This new tool is one of several recent offerings and enhancements to Interactive Data’s evaluated pricing services. Other recent additions include extended coverage, the publication of a daily market commentary for U.S. securities, and new daily tolerance reports for U.S. municipal securities and international corporate and sovereign securities, that complement similar reports available for U.S. corporate and convertible bonds.

Interactive Data has decades of experience in providing independent fixed income evaluated pricing and is a recognized leader in the market. Interactive Data's teams of evaluators operate in three major time zones to evaluate approximately 2.8 million fixed income and international equity issues every day, covering a broad range of instruments that include global asset-backed securities (ABS), mortgage-backed securities (MBS) and collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs). Independent valuations for a broad range of alternative investments are also available. Over 5,000 financial institutions in over 50 countries, including central banks, investment banks, major mutual and investment fund companies, subscribe to Interactive Data's evaluated prices.

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