Citi to develop AI-based trade finance compliance platform

Citi to develop AI-based trade finance compliance platform

Citi is working with EY and SAS to on the development of an AI-based risk analytics scoring engine to provide more context and usable data to aid decision makers in reviewing trade transactions.

The 'NextGen' project was created to help streamline the time-consuming, highly manual processes associated with reviewing high volumes of global trade transactions while ensuring regulatory compliance.

John Ahearn, global head of trade for Citi Treasury and Trade Solutions, says: "We process 9 million transactions annually, and the NextGen project will help us optimise our processes from the back office to the front, by expanding the use of digitisation, automation and advanced analytics.”

Valeria Sica, global head of trade services for Citi, adds that the real-time system will help the bank to more efficiently detect transactions with potential compliance concerns up front: “This solution assists in managing and comparing a large number of data points across current and prior transactions, which will provide more context and usable data to aid the decision maker in reviewing global trade transactions, which has traditionally been a very manual process across the industry.”

Citi already digitises over 25MM trade-related pages annually with optical character recognition (OCR). NextGen will deploy advanced analytics and natural language processing to sift through this trove of data to better understand networks of related parties, unstructured data and customer activity over time.

Stu Bradley, VP of fraud and security intelligence at SAS, says banks face almost overwhelming scale and complexity in the trade-finance sector and in compliance activities.

“SAS’ sophisticated analytics platform will help Citi drive more effective and efficient monitoring of trade transactions," he says. "The resulting performance and enhanced risk insights should lead to a better risk posture, improved response times for monitoring, and reduced operational costs.”

Finextra’s NextGen Banking London 2019 conference on 16 May will bring together practitioners from across the financial services industry to explore what the AI revolution means for banks - and what financial institutions need to do in the short, medium and longer terms to benefit from AI, and ensure their customers do so as well.
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