11.25.2011
By Terry Flanagan

Back to the Front

Investment systems are delivering integrated front-, middle- and back-office components.

Front-, middle-, and back-office components of investment management systems are being integrated to manage the complex workflow associated with order generation, execution, allocation, risk, and settlement.

A single vendor, integrated solution is thought to help manage such complexities and reduce the associated operational risk, experts say.

An example is SunGard’s recently-launched Asset Arena Manager, which comprises portfolio management, investment compliance, and order management. Additional modules include market risk management and, instrument valuation/pricing, investment accounting and performance attribution.

“Competition is getting ever tougher in this climate,” Vincent Burzynski, chief operating officer, SunGard Asset Arena Manager, told Markets Media. “Investors are more demanding and putting more pressure on asset managers to deliver good value,” he said. “This drives the need for increased efficiency in the front and middle office, which Asset Arena Manager delivers.”

Asset Arena is SunGard’s global suite of products and services for asset managers, institutional investors, and traditional and alternative fund administrators.

Another example is SS&C Technologies’ Global Markets Risk, which simulates investment returns for all asset classes, and calculates risk measures that can be viewed at the aggregate portfolio level. As an integrated system, Global Markets Risk allows firms to aggregate risk across the enterprise, drawing data directly from the financial reporting platform and delivering position-based risk analysis to traders, portfolio managers and risk officers, according to SS&C.

SunGard’s customers demanded a flexible solution for their investment management process that could be combined with any order management system (OMS), back office system, third party administrator or peripheral business specific application, the company said.

“It enables investment managers to view portfolios in one screen, and to integrate other applications, reducing the number of systems used, thereby reducing operational risk,” said Burzynski.

Users can onboard new instruments, such as OTC derivatives, that traders and portfolio managers want to invest in more easily. As a result, the time to market for new products is reduced. “New instruments can easily be added into the existing workflow,” said Burzynski. “No manual, spreadsheet-based processes are needed; everything can be handled in Asset Arena Manager.”

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