With the Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) already an integrated part of the asset managers’ daily trading routine, surveillance has become an increasingly demanding and competitive field for data vendors. In the last couple of years, the market has changed and the buy side needs to adapt to surveillance operations, similar to what their sell-side counterparts have been doing for years. In this category, first introduced in the 2016 Buy-Side Technology Awards, which marked the aforementioned shift, Moody’s Analytics has shown its strength and overturned last year’s winner, Nasdaq.
The Moody’s Analytics Structured Finance Portal was released in 2014 and over the last three years has attracted more than 120 financial services firms, mostly from the buy side. While it started off as a tool used primarily to increase transparency in the collateralized loan obligation (CLO) market, it soon expanded to all asset classes. The Portal aggregates data from a number of sources, including third-party data, the firm’s own proprietary data, trustee reports, and other deal documentation. It also features monitoring and cash-flow modules that can be used to set up custom portfolios. Users can view their bonds or holdings and associated key statistics via the Portal’s interface, highlighting their individual exposures.
Luis Amador, managing director, structured products and advisory services at Moody’s Analytics, says the Portal’s progressive comparative analytics feature sets the solution apart from the rest of the available offerings on the market. “This feature gives clients the option to compare deals, managers and issuers to help [them] understand how they drive the performance of an investor’s exposures,” he says. “Users are able to dive deeper into a portfolio and also view a manager’s loss mitigation, trade behavior, concentration choices, and market perception.”
Over the last year, Moody’s Analytics has been focusing on advancing its technology infrastructure to support and enhance the Portal’s services. Amador says the firm’s work on upgrading its technology stack has resulted in features like analytics, aggregations, and reports, running a lot faster. “We have also enhanced our functionality across structured asset classes, such as commercial mortgage-backed securities, residential mortgage-backed securities and consumer asset-backed securities, as well as extending it to the EMEA and APAC regions,” he adds.
The firm is looking to put more control in users’ hands, as it plans to release major enhancements within the next year, whereby users will be able to create custom metrics, aggregations and reports. Also, users will see an improved version of the Portal’s functionality, specifically in the cashflow analytics, bid wanted in competition (BWIC) integration, and comparables areas.
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