Part 2: The Problems with Trade Processing Infrastructure

Martin Walker

Almost everyone agrees there is a problem with the highly complex and expensive trade processing of investment banks and the markets divisions of general banks. Regulators, central banks, politicians, bank managements, management consultants, software vendors, the fintech world and the internal IT departments themselves all seem to be in agreement. The succession of large-scale programmes to “transform” infrastructure indicate there must be some major problems because managements spent so much time and money trying to fix them.

The “problems with problems” come when they are not really defined, when they are only a problem for some parties but not for others, when a problem is created simply because someone wants to gain money or power by purporting to fix it, or where the problem is actually just an aspiration for something that is probably unachievable.

Figure P2

Rolling out a new system without having defined the problem can make achieving success difficult. Setting out on a transformation project without an objective baseline to measure success against, not even knowing whether the project has succeeded or failed, can lead to an even worse situation. This is a surprisingly common

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