Tag Archives: capital markets
The business of financial services is transforming before our eyes. Traditional banking and insurance products have become commoditized. As each day passes, consumers demand increasingly personalized products and services. Social and mobile channels continue to overthrow traditional communication methods. To survive and grow in this complex environment, financial institutions must do three things:
- Attract and retain the best customers
- Grow wallet share
- Deliver top-notch customer experience across all channels and touch points
The finance industry is traditionally either product centric or account centric. However, to succeed in the future, financial institutions must become customer centric. Becoming customer-centric requires changes to your people, process, technology, and culture. You must offer the right product or service to the right customer, at the right time, via the right channel. To achive this, you must ensure alignment between business and technology leaders. It will require targeted investments to grow the business, particularly the need to modernize legacy systems.
To become customer-centric, business executives are investing in Big Data and in legacy modernization initiatives. These investments are helping Marketing, Sales and Support organizations to:
- Improve conversion rates on new marketing campaigns on cross-sell and up-sell activities
- Measure customer sentiment on particular marketing and sales promotions or on the financial institution as a whole
- Improve sales productivity ratios by targeting the right customers with the right product at the right time
- Identify key indicators that determine and predict profitable and unprofitable customers
- Deliver an omni-channel experience across all lines of business, devices, and locations
At Informatica, we want to help you succeed. We want you to maximize the value in these investments. For this reason, we’ve written a new eBook titled: “Potential Unlocked – Improving revenue and customer experience in financial services”. In the eBook, you will learn:
- The role customer information plays in taking customer experience to the next level
- Best practices for shifting account-centric operations to customer-centric operations
- Common barriers and pitfalls to avoid
- Key considerations and best practices for success
- Strategies and experiences from best-in-class companies
Take a giant step toward Customer-Centricity: Download the eBook now.
Printed words are good, but pictures and sound are better. Watch the video below for a quick summation of how Informatica Ultra Messaging can help your business:
- Increase application performance and throughput
- Reduce fixed and operational costs
- Increase capacity
- Reduce single points of failure
- Increase scalability, reliability, and availability
For more information, have a look at: Ultra Messaging, Better Value with Better Technology.
Pete Benesh discusses some of the major business challenges driving IT investment in capital markets today. He also highlights how Informatica Ultra Messaging can help organizations tackle these challenges.
There are lots of ways to run a trading firm.
Some firms use a strategy centered around high frequency or algorithmic trading, which are similar in that having the best technology and writing the fastest trading applications is essential.
At the other end of the spectrum, some firms employ only human traders, using a traditional buy-and-hold strategy, expecting to hold the security for months or even years before moving it.
But in between these two ends of the spectrum, there exists a hybrid that uses electronic trading with a bit of buy-and-hold added in. Some call this blend “trade smarter, not harder”.
Instead of competing with other traders to get the absolute lowest price, this strategy prioritizes on making better decisions by doing “pre-trade analytics” on historical and financial data.
More and more business applications are moving from the desktop to the cloud, and electronic trading applications are no different.
Over the last five or ten years, application vendors have established several advantages of running major applications, even mission-critical applications like salesforce.com, over the cloud.
These advantages include:
- Easier and smoother upgrades, which provides much better adaptability and agility in the face of changing market and business conditions, plus a better user experience,
- Better scalability, with newer technology advances, and
- Better portability across a wide array of device types, including smartphones and tablets (especially in the last 2-3 years).
Recent improvements in Web technology, such as HTML5 WebSockets, are helping to speed this transition along by providing several throughput and latency advantages over earlier iterations of Web technology, and even over native Windows applications. Now, application architects can freely choose the technology that provides a better path for growth, agility, and scalability, which is often a Cloud-based solution.
As I write this, a few of our customers who provide electronic trading solutions to their clients are making the strategic move to develop a next generation application based in the Cloud. The main driver for one customer was to be able to take on more clients more quickly and therefore grow the business faster by increasing marginal revenue and profitability. They found that the list of challenges with a thick desktop client to be just too big for growing the business as quickly as they wanted to — or needed to.
Messaging middleware, especially peer-to-peer solutions such as Informatica Ultra Messaging, can be a very important piece of a Cloud-based application. The peer-to-peer “nothing in the middle” model provides applications not just ultra-high performance (whether for high throughput or low latency), but also near-linear scalability, true 24×7 reliability and availability, and business and IT agility. These qualities tie directly to the advantages listed above.
Cloud-based applications, of course, must also contend with the Internet and all that comes with that: support for various browsers and platforms (and versions of each), scalability and bandwidth issues, and mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. New web technologies like HTML5 WebSockets from Kaazing are best positioned to take care of the path from server to the smartphone or tablet, and with JMS connectivity to Ultra Messaging on the back end, can provide a Cloud-based application with a lean, scalable and agile infrastructure, usually with less hardware.
For more, please see our 2011 Efficiency series (#1, #2, #3) on our Perspectives blog, or whitepapers such as Modern Messaging Middleware for Big Data in Motion or Enterprise Messaging Data for the Web.
Evaluating a price in the Equities or Foreign Exchange (“FX”) markets does not require much calculation, and so one of the prime limiting factors on winning those trades has been the speed of data movement, from one application to another, either within the same host or across the network. But the world of Fixed Income, commonly known as “bonds”, is different. (more…)
In a recent post: Remove the Restrictor Plate with High Performance Load Balancing, my colleague Jeff Brokaw compared the high performance architecture of Informatica Ultra Messaging to the removal of the carburetor restrictor plate on a NASCAR racing engine to increase airflow and speed. Ultra Messaging has removed the “restrictor plate” in that it provides direct peer-to-peer communication between applications with no intermediary brokers – thereby delivering extremely high and sustained throughput rates at low latencies. (more…)
In a recent post: Informatica Ultra Messaging Software Supports Capital Markets Reforms, I discussed the technology implications of the OTC derivatives (swaps) market moving to electronic trading as mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act (DFA) in the US and the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) in Europe. One area where new technology infrastructure will be especially critical is in the creation and operation of “exchanges” for electronic swaps trading, similar to what is used for equities and other asset classes. In the language of the DFA, such exchange venues are called Swap Execution Facilities (SEFs) and are defined as “a facility, trading system or platform in which multiple participants have the ability to execute or trade swaps by accepting bids and offers made by other participants that are open to multiple participants in the facility or system, through any means of interstate commerce.” This of course includes capturing orders electronically, matching bids and offers, executing the trades, and providing connections to central clearing houses. And perhaps nowhere else in the new ecosystem is the expected growth in message volumes and associated need for new messaging middleware technology more evident than here. (more…)
In the past, the term latency has been largely ignored in the IT world, with the exception of network engineers and algorithmic trading experts. But today, there is compelling evidence that latency is an important metric for every business that runs a website, or that deploys Rich Internet Applications (RIAs), because even small delays in presenting data show a clear pattern of pushing customers and readers away.
Interesting data, replicated by multiple sources (including Bing, Google, and Amazon) show that slow-loading pages can cause the viewer to lose focus and potentially even click on something else, possibly never to return.
For instance, on search results, a delay of just .5 second chases away up to 20% of the traffic and revenue. As it says at this O’Reilly Radar post, “delays under half a second impact business metrics”.
Our first post in this series on Efficiency covered the high-level performance benefits of super-efficient messaging software, whether you measure for latency or throughput, since efficiency is the property of software that provides performance. “Ultra-low latency” is just another term for extremely fast, lean, efficient execution. For more, see the post: Ultra Messaging is Also High-Throughput, High-Availability, Lower-TCO Messaging.
Our next post covered 24×7 availability, reliability and lower TCO from this efficiency. Less hardware and fewer software processes to touch the data in transit between applications provides these benefits. For more, see the post Ultra Messaging: For 24×7 High Availability, Lower TCO, and Robust Reliability.
This post discusses how the same Ultra Messaging efficiency that provides performance, reliability, and lower TCO also provides great agility and near-linear scalability. And with today’s Big Data challenges, especially in the capital markets, efficiency is more prized than ever.