Data, data everywhere

Making sense of the vast streams of differently formatted data produced by the financial services industry every day is a recurring nightmare for risk managers and regulators. Efforts are now under way to standardise data formats, with Malaysia setting an example. Clive Davidson reports


One theme that has run consistently through post mortems of the financial crisis is the inadequacy of the data that investors, banks and market supervisors had at their disposal. In some cases, it was because the data was never gathered in the first place, or the data was there but it was ignored in a blind scramble for profit. But in many instances, the problem was not so much a lack of data or a wilful overlooking of it, but an inability to make sense of it because it came in so many

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