Nice Actimize, a Nice Systems (NASDAQ:NICE) business and the largest and broadest provider of a single financial crime, risk and compliance software platform for the financial services industry, announced today the availability of the Actimize Benchmark Monitoring Solution, an integrated solution designed to assist in detecting and identifying rate-setting activities, processes and procedures within a single offering combining communications channel insight and incorporating alert, case management and reporting.
The solution enables firms to have a better understanding of what is being discussed and traded within its trading floors, thus enabling their internal compliance division the ability to respond rapidly to suspicious rate-rigging issues, thereby increasing its chances at lowering risk and speeding resolution.
With more than a decade of experience in developing compliance solutions, NICE Actimize created its Benchmark Monitoring Solution in response to customer demand and recent incidents affecting the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) and Singapore Interbank Offered Rate (SIBOR) reference rates. The solution monitors the rate-setting process, simultaneously with a communications monitoring process, with analytics modules to capture and analyze rate submission and communications data. Moreover, it detects keywords and phrases that would imply an attempt to influence key interest rates across rate submission by monitoring voice and messaging channels.
"The Libor scandal struck at the integral heart of financial services. Products which deliver clarity and insight to uncover possible manipulation will be welcomed by regulators and market participants alike. With the regulators renewed focus on personal accountability, now is the time for firms, and those individuals responsible, to take the necessary action," according to Rebecca Healey, Senior Analyst, TABB Group.
Utilizing surveillance models to review communication activities regarding rate-setting, offers the ability to change the way financial institutions monitor and review such activities. This approach, when used in conjunction with rate monitoring, provides advanced abilities to detect, understand, and react to such rate rigging activity.
Working with a leading financial institution in EMEA, NICE Actimize demonstrated the solution's potential effectiveness, in a trial solution comparison, by taking an existing benchmark investigation process used at the institution and comparing its results against those obtained by using the Actimize Benchmark Monitoring Solution. The Actimize Benchmark Monitoring Solution identified the relevant voice recordings in minutes, highlighting the most relevant conversations first.
In this specific trial instance, the Actimize Benchmark Monitoring Solution was able to discover connected conversations in about 30 minutes and complete the necessary evaluation in three days, where before, using other technology and manual methods utilized at the bank, this same process had taken more than four months and 480 man hours to achieve.
"Financial institutions are under focused scrutiny by regulators due to recent rate setting scandals, which has created immediate need for an integrated oversight approach to ensure compliance," said Amir Orad, President and CEO NICE Actimize. "Proactive monitoring of both rate-setting transactions and related communications, coupled with dedicated analytics to detect suspicious trader behaviors is an important step towards enabling financial services firms to demonstrate integrity and to regain public confidence."
Over the past year, many countries launched their investigations into benchmark rates manipulation. Singapore's local financial regulator, Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) discovered, for example, 133 rogue traders at twenty banking giants involved in the attempted SIBOR manipulation. To prevent a recurrence of a similar scandal, MAS has proposed changes to the regulatory framework to make rates-rigging a criminal offense and will be reviewing the current rate-setting system.
As a capital markets compliance market leader, NICE Actimize continues to innovate and keep pace with the highly dynamic global regulatory environment and the constantly changing requirements of its capital markets client base. While continuing to enhance its legacy solutions, over the last year NICE Actimize has made a significant investment in new solutions and implementation methods. Following the October 2012 acquisition of Redkite Financial Markets, NICE Actimize now provides three deployment options: on-premise, cloud, or a hybrid of the two.