Introduction

The complexity of modern Treasury Management Systems is increasing as Treasuries are becoming increasingly controlled, regulated and monitored. There is a need for Treasurers to develop a consolidated view of positions, risk metrics and risk numbers to improve the performance of Treasury systems. Globally it has been observed that Tier I banks are trending from managing risk to leveraging risk data for improving business performance.

In the initial days Treasury systems predominantly focused on increasing efficiency through Straight-Through-Processing (STP) mechanism and improving linkages to various upstream and downstream systems as well as various settlement agencies, liquidity providers and service providers. As the emphasis of Treasurers shifted towards risk decision making, a need emerged for Central Enterprise-level Treasury Systems that can help them make insightful decisions.

Some metrics such as ‘Evaluation Adjusted for CVA’ and ‘Potential Future Exposure (PFE)’ provide guidance to Treasurers in terms of managing deals, understanding the risk associated with deals and their compliance costs. This type of risk information can radically improve business performance and decision making. Apart from integrated risk numbers, margin management has also emerged as an area of focus and to enable this better collateral management capabilities are also required.

Challenges Faced by Treasurers

In today's complex treasury environment, Treasurers face challenges along the three dimensions of Business, Operations and Technology.

Business Front

  • Need for a single cross-asset solution which can provide an intuitive view of risk numbers, P&L numbers and trade positions.
  • Liquidity Management has become an important area of concern with the emergence of norms like Basel III.
  • Treasurers require a real-time accurate view of global cash positions from an optimization perspective.
  • Treasury management systems should have the ability to launch new and complex products in a short time-frame to deal with increased competitive pressures.
  • With the increasing complexity of global operations companies are placing greater focus on integrated systems that can talk to each other and eliminate data silos.
  • Requirement for intuitive dashboards which can help make risk data more 'noticeable' enabling better risk decision making.

Operational Front

  • Ability to cater to the total life cycle of the trade right from front office deal booking to back office deal settlement.
  • Increased System Productivity by incorporating workflows and business processes which can be customized based on location or region.
  • Systems should have the capacity to accommodate new policies or controls which can emerge in the future based on the decisions taken by management committees.

Technology Front

  • Requirement for high Latency Treasury systems which enable faster deal booking and rapid retrieval of position and risk information.
  • Systems should have the ability to scale-up and handle growing transactional volumes.
  • With changing business requirements more services need to be added in the future and this could lead to higher cost pressures and scalability issues.
  • Ability to integrate with various external and internal systems via ready hooks like APIs.

Intellect iRTM Solution

It can be summarized that there is a need for a single risk and execution system that can report margin requirements across asset classes for any particular portfolio. This is the idea of OneTREASURY or Integrated Risk and Treasury Management System that comprises of eight major solutions:.

Treasury CBX: It is a portal solution which empowers Treasury clients of a bank to do self-trading and information retrieval. The self-servicing functionality powers business growth and this solution can be used to cross-sell products to customers.

Zf Risk Visualisation: This solution focuses primarily on dynamic real time risk reporting which enables traders and risk officers to spot areas which require attention using the real-time risk information.

Cross Assets Solution: Integrated Front-Mid-Back Office Treasury system which provides support for multiple asset classes and brings in cost efficiencies.

Collateral Management Solution: Centralised Collateral Management module provides Treasurers with a complete view of counterparty wise exposures and available collateral. It enables them to make accurate decisions on margin requirements based on revaluation and total exposure.

Liquidity Risk Management: Provides visibility of cash flows across asset classes and various banking businesses to enable traders to make accurate fund management decisions and better monitor and manage bank-wide liquidity risk.

Intra-Day Liquidity Management: It is a specialized NOSTRO / Cash Management Solution which provides global visibility of cash-flows for effective intra-day liquidity management. It enables decision makers to better understand Fund Flows, Payment Patterns and Settlements.

Market Risk Management: Basel III and Dodd-Frank regulations require banks to do Stressed Var on a regular basis and monitor Risk Management Var and Regulatory Var. This solution provides dashboards for monitoring various types of Var thereby providing an integrated view of risk across banking and trading books.

Confirmation Management: This solution ensures proper reconciliation of outstanding transactions and ensures mitigation of pre-settlement and settlement risk.

The overall focus of the iRTM solution is to better use risk data to improve the quality of portfolios and make superior position management decisions which translate into higher levels of business performance. It gives the reassurance, Treasurers need to step-up to critical Treasury management challenges across business, operational and technology fronts.

A Case in Point…

Intellect partners with over 40 international banks and financial institutions to across 90 countries in helping them to meet their challenging business needs. Here is a brief case study of how Intellect helped one of the world's largest treasuries to reinvent itself.

The client is one of the largest Treasuries in the world. In order to retain global competitiveness, the client needed to replace its existing treasury system, which had multiple instances across multiple locations, making it cost-intensive and difficult to maintain. Apart from this the client needed to replace ICS legacy systems that were being used in the United States and Canada.

The client needed a centralized treasury environment with multi-branch, multi-region and multi-desk capabilities. The existing system also presented regulatory challenges as the disparate instances were making it difficult to perform Liquidity Stress Testing and historical analysis of cash flows. The new system should have the capability to streamline treasury operations and provide a single instance across the globe.

Intellect deployed its Risk Treasury solution providing a single treasury and risk management instance across the globe. The solution was deployed using its trademark Accelerated Implementation Methodology (AIM) in which Intellect components were used to accelerate implementation and enhance the solution.

The implementation drastically reduced position consolidation time across asset classes exponentially from 8 hours to 15 minutes and position transfer across regions can be done instantaneously. This led to increased operational efficiency and profitability. The single Treasury and risk management instance made it possible for trading and analytics to be performed online and real-time on a single platform eliminating human errors, which often led to sub-optimal decision making. The system supports 15,000 transactions/day, worth USD 80 trillion in value!

Conclusion

The Treasury Management industry is constantly evolving with the emergence of regulations such as Basel III and Dodd-Frank. There is a growing trend towards leveraging risk data for better business decision making capabilities. IRTM is an integrated Treasury and Risk Management solution that is built keeping the needs of traders in mind and is designed to keep pace with the latest market trends.

The solution provides visibility of cash flows at a global level and enables liquidity decision support for formulating better funding strategies. New and complex products can be launched using the SOA framework and the solution is integrated with Numerix for leveraging industry-wide best practices in the area of risk management. Dynamic real-time risk reporting capabilities increase the visibility and notice-ability of risk data making it easier to act upon. The solution adheres to Treasury trading policies and controls both at a global and local level ensuring regulatory compliance.

About the Author

Venkatesh Srinivasan

CEO - Risk, Treasury and Markets

Venkatesh has over 20 years of experience in the IT industry, 15 years of which he had in banking technology, spanning Tata Consultancy Services, Citigroup and Intellect. Before moving to his current role 5 years ago, Venkatesh worked as Head of Technology for Citigroup India, Corporate Banking covering Application Development and Maintenance.

Venkatesh is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and has done a Computer Management program. He is also a member of Global Association of Risk Practitioners (GARP).

About Intellect Design Arena Limited

Intellect Design Arena Ltd, is the brand progressive financial institutions rely on for Digital Transformation initiatives. A uniquely focused Products business, the $100 million Intellect Design Arena has the soul of an agile start up, with the maturity of an established specialist in designing advanced technology products for global financial platforms. Intellect provides full spectrum, fully integrated products that run in over 200 financial institutions, across 30 countries.

Intellect is the chosen partner for 9 of the top 10 global banks and 7 of the top 10 global insurance companies. The company has a global presence through its 40 relationship offices across 30 countries, 6 international development centers and 8 fully owned Business Solution centers.

For more information, please visit www.intellectdesign.com