Swift welcomes data vendors; looks to strengthen balance sheet

Swift welcomes data vendors; looks to strengthen balance sheet

At its annual general meeting in Brussels, interbank messaging network Swift has approved a new category of securities market data participants and voted through proposals for an increase in capital in an effort to strengthen its balance sheet.

Swift says that opening up the network to market data vendors represents a significant step forward for the use of ISO 15022 standards for corporate actions and reference data across the industry.

FT Interactive Data, Reuters, Telekurs Financial Information and WM Datenservice all participated in a pilot programme last year for sending corporate actions messages over SwiftNet.

Says Swift in a statement: "Their integration within the Swift community will provide significant potential for greater STP as well as risk and cost reduction."

The AGM also saw a 90% vote in favour of amending the by-laws permitting Swift to increase its capital "should the Board ever decide such an increase is in the best interest of the co-operative".

As Swift chairman Jaap Kamp noted at the user group chairperson's meeting last year: "Our volumes have grown four-fold in the last 10 years, but capital has only increased by 40%, so it may be time to look at our financial resilience."

The Swift executive has been asked to report back to the board in September with proposals to transform the existing advance charges, currently recorded as non-interest bearing deposits, into permanent shareholder equity.

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